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The Best DIY Cleaners for Your Kitchen Appliance Finishes

by Waverly Wilde

Make your kitchen gleam with the help of these 4 DIY cleaners—customized for your appliances’ finishes.

Stainless Steel

The most popular kitchen appliance finish is commonly partitioned into two camps: traditional stainless steel and black stainless steel—with the latter having a more high-gloss finish than the former (and thereby being better able to hide fingerprint smudges). 

Luckily, a clean microfiber cloth and some warm water take care of most smudges on all stainless steel appliances and fixtures, but if you’re looking for something more heavy-duty to deodorize your appliance, look no further than your kitchen pantry to concoct a baking-soda-based cleaner. In a small bowl, mix 4 tablespoons of baking soda with 1 quart of water to make a paste. Dampen a clean rag with distilled white vinegar, and swab your stainless steel surface with it. Next, smear the baking soda paste over your appliance, letting the solution rest for a couple of minutes. Once it’s brittle, rub off the paste with a dry towel. Douse another cleaning rag with lemon juice to disinfect your appliance, and wipe away any residue with some warm water.


Low-gloss, matte appliance finishes are relatively fingerprint-resistant, making cleaning a breeze! Whether your GE appliance is in a standard slate or black slate finish, the following cleaning regimen is bound to leave your kitchen looking sleek and welcoming for years to come.

First, mix a few drops of mild detergent soap with a couple of cups of water. Then, soak a soft cleaning rag in the solution to rub the grime off of your appliance. Once the surface is dry, apply a layer of teak oil with another cloth. Often used as a finishing product for wood, teak oil can be purchased from a vendor or be made in the comfort of your home! To whip up your own makeshift version, mix paint thinner with an equal portion of one of the following oils: linseed, tung or mineral. 

As an added tip, for more stubborn stains, mix together peroxide and baking soda into a paste, and apply it to the stain so that it sets for a couple of minutes. Finally, wipe your slate clean (literally) with a damp cloth!


Cast Iron

Now available in several Maytag appliances including dishwashers and microwaves, this scratch-resistant finish can be cleared of grime with just some water and a splash of apple cider vinegar.

Stir together a 4-to-1 ratio of water and apple cider vinegar to make your cleaning solution. To apply on smooth surfaces (like a dishwasher door), simply spread this cleaner with a soft rag. To scrub cast-iron stovetop grates, first, use a steel-bristled brush to get the cleaner into hard-to-reach crevices, and then wipe off your grates with a dry cloth. To help prevent rust from building up on your grates, apply a light coating of cooking oil over your grates to create a tough coating.

Not all cleaning regimens work for every appliance and appliance finish, but we can helpvisit us at Spencer’s today to find the perfect appliances that work for you!