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Stainless steel, as the name implies, is a type of metal that is highly resistant to corrosion and stain. It’s mixed in with chromium giving that shiny finish and resistant properties which can be found mostly on the surface. It’s perfect for ovens and other commercial kitchen equipment because of the amount of use they go through in their lifetime.
Stainless steel may be the way to go in terms of kitchen equipment but there are times where the wear and tear of the metal can make this metal susceptible to rust and tarnish. When this happens, you have a number of genius ways on how to deal with the situation - be it utensils or kitchen equipmentlike a counter top, microwave oven, electric oven, gas oven, convection oven and the like. Here’s how to remove rust from your stainless steel things:
1. Baking Soda
In a bowl, mix a tablespoon of baking soda and 2 cups water or enough baking soda to create a pliable paste. Next, with an old toothbrush or sponge, apply and rub the past onto the stain and rust spots and rub along the grain. If you go against the grain, this might rub off the chromium layer which is what we’re trying to preserve.
Then, wet a damp cloth, wipe off the excess and rinse away. This should do the trick especially with ovens and stove tops.
2. Baking Soda + Lemon Juice
For tougher stains, you need the help of some acids - not the corrosive ones though. Lemon juice creates a reaction with baking soda that helps lift up tough rust spots and stains, like the ones you find inside convection ovens and old utensils.
Just combine equal parts lemon juice and baking soda to create a paste to rub on the surface using a toothbrush or a soft scrubbing pad. Avoid using abrasive materials like steel wool as this can hurt your commercial kitchen equipment and utensils and score them.
3. Cream of Tartar
This is the same reaction with the baking soda and lemon juice mix but it’s a bit softer compared to it. This is great for removing tarnish from utensils that need extra care.
4. The Chemical Method Route
If all else fails and the stains and rust spots just won’t go away, it’s time to pull out the heavy artillery. Choose a cleaner that has oxalic acid, which is a common ingredient in most laundry and commercial kitchen equipment cleaners. The way it works is that the acid converts insoluble iron compounds into soluble ions.
It may sound too geeky for some but it works! Just apply a generous amount on it while following the packaging’s directions and let it sit for a bit. Then scrub away. The job should be done in a couple of scrubs.
Also, avoid using cleaners that contain chlorides. The solution is too abrasive on stainless steel and will lead to a thinner chromium protective layer.
There you have it! Four genius ways of removing rust from your precious stainless steel. All it takes is a little chemistry experiment and elbow grease and you’re good to go!
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