• DIY Stainless Steel Appliance Cleaner

    by Rachel on October 18, 2012

    With six little grimmy hands running around my house, our stainless steel refrigerator and dishwasher get embarrassingly nasty. Fingerprints are everywhere! Want to see?

    DIY Stainless Steel Cleaner

    DIY Stainless Steel Cleaner

    DIY Stainless Steel Cleaner

    DIY Stainless Steel Cleaner

    And these pictures don’t even show the half of it! It looks much worse in person.

    I’ve never known what to do about cleaning my stainless steel appliances because a) I didn’t want to use any toxic cleaner on it, and b) I didn’t want to spend any money for a cleaner. So for months I’ve been attempting to fight back the fingerprints with soap and water or all-purpose spray. Unfortunately, neither repels future prints, and they both leave a film that isn’t all that much better than the fingerprints themselves.

    Low and behold, my handy-house-flipping friend, Kristin, was over one day (she is a different friend than the one who told me about the DIY Fruit Fly Trap idea). She mentioned that using olive oil might work to clean my stainless steel naturally.

    I took her advice and check out THE RESULTS.

    DIY Stainless Steel Cleaner

    DIY Stainless Steel Cleaner

    Want to give it a try? Here’s how to clean your stainless steel appliances naturally using olive oil:

    1. Wipe off any major caked on grime using a rag.
    2. Pour about a tablespoon or so of olive oil on a folded paper towel. You don’t want too much oil or you’ll leave streaks of oil on the fridge, but you want enough that it does the job. You may have to experiment a bit.
    3. Wipe the fridge or appliance “with the grain” of the steel. By that I mean, look for what direction the metal seems to naturally go. For my fridge, I started at the top and pulled all the way to the bottom and did this all the way across the fridge. This stroking method worked better than using a circular motion, which left some streaks. For my dishwasher, I went side to side.
    4. You may have to reload your paper towel once or twice with more oil to cover the whole surface.
    5. Wipe off any excess oil using a dry paper towel.

    I was amazed at how the oil cleaned off every bit of print, left my stainless steel appliance shiny, and has even repelled fingerprints more easily. I’m guessing a cheaper oil like canola would work, too, but I haven’t tried it yet.

    Three cheers for Kristin and this all-natural DIY stainless steel appliance cleaner!

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