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Can anything "seal" stainless steel appliances?

Posted by jaxo (My Page) on
Sun, Feb 17, 13 at 13:51

I have a stainless steel refrigerator with ice and water in the door.
Water dribbles in dispenser housing and people don't notice or bother to wipe it up, so it leaves near permanent water stains.
I got 95% of it off with a lot of effort, baking soda and Barkeepers Friend. I can see dark grey residue on the cleaning cloth when I use BKF, so it looks like it is scraping off some of the stainless steel each time I use it. So, I don't think this is a long term solution since it will cause damage over time.
It seems like it would have been smarter if the fridge manufacturers would either made the housing plastic or else put a clear plastic or even glass liner in that area to keep the water dispenser housing from being stained with water marks.
Is there anything that can be used as a sealer on stainless steel that will keep water marks from sticking to and penetrating the stainless steel so water drip marks can be just wiped off instead of needing scrubbing?


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Can anything "seal" stainless steel appliances?

I'm not a chemist but I think hard ward stains might be best removed with some kind of acid like vinegar. You'd probably have to do a fair amount of rubbing with cleanser to remove a significant amount of the stainless but you could change the sheen over time.

I don't believe there is a stainless steel "sealer".


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RE: Can anything "seal" stainless steel appliances?

Have you tried one of the oil or wax based cleaners? If I were you, I would try either Rain-X or Glass Wax in a small area to see what it looks like and if it doesn't change the appearance, you might try applying it to the problem area. I haven't tried this myself, but I have used both products for preventing nose prints on glass doors and windows. The Rain-X works best for my problem.


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RE: Can anything "seal" stainless steel appliances?

Water dribbles in dispenser housing and people don't notice or bother to wipe it up, so it leaves near permanent water stains.
What about just leaving a folded dishcloth laying in the tray to catch any 'dribbles'? You could check it or change it out as needed, maybe hanging it up to dry at night or something.

I would find it a pain in the you know what to have to wipe the tray after each and every time getting water or ice.


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RE: Can anything "seal" stainless steel appliances?

Actually, there would be no need to wipe after using the water dispenser if the people using it would wait a second before snatching their glass away so they can allow the water to stop running.. There should be no need for any rags or wiping if that was done since there would be no drips in the first place.
I know how to clean the stains with Bar Keepers Friend, but I'm looking for a solution to make the water marks not stick so they will easily wipe off with plan water or soapy water.
I don't think BKF will be good to use long term. I have a feeling that even though it is not leaving any scratches, it will eventually polish away the grain in the stainless steel and leave a noticeable shiny spot from repeatedly buffing away mineral deposits.
I'm looking for something that will put a seal on the surface, What about these options"
Car wax?
RainX?
Granite sealer?
Olive oil?
Some kind of specialized stainless steel sealer?

Has anyone ever used anything that has successfully sealed and protected a stainless steel surface?


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RE: Can anything "seal" stainless steel appliances?

Once you have cleaned off the water marks, or the entire fridge with your favorite method,
(i use BonAmi) you could rub in a bit of mineral oil or baby oil to protect a specific area.
I use mineral oil on my cutting boards, pour a few tblsp rubbing it lightly all over to soak in...
At the same time i put a bit on the fridge edge where the handle is and along the top of the bottom freezer door. Not a permanent sealer, but it is a barrier against trouble areas.
Just re-apply after a cleaning. It should prevent the daily annoyance.
-My husband for some reason ALWAYS places his hands on the edges. He uses the handle to open the fridge, then immediately grabs the edge and fronts when removing something.
Some stainless cleaners use silicones that will protect a bit but they also attract dust and air particles...and most of them are very toxic. AND the next time you clean it is that much harder because you have the added step of removing that oil slick.
Olive oil would do the same but my dogs would lick it and make a bigger mess. Even veg oil, so i use mineral oil. It is neutral and much cleaner so it will never develop a rancid odor. IF you try a thin oil layer, it will appear a different sheen at first, (just rub on a little bit)...then come back in a few minutes and buff it out. I know some just rub down the entire appliance.
The BKF just might show a rub-down spot over time. More a concern is, in that moment of frustration, giving it that quick clean, you may pick up the wrong cloth. One that is not perfectly clean, and cause scratches. I use 80%vinegar/20%rub alcohol and BonAmi...for everything. Have BKF for stubborn stuff. Maybe just vinegar as your 'quick clean' .
You'll have to experiment a better system but do try an oil.
Never tried the rain-x type of thing.


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RE: Can anything "seal" stainless steel appliances?

The people who sell stuff for automobiles probably have some fine waxes.


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RE: Can anything "seal" stainless steel appliances?

On your behalf i dripped some water on my door area that i wipe with mineral oil.
It left a water mark but quickly buffed out without any cleaner. Still does not solve the daily visual staining. It is one of the biggest complaints i read about. Keeping kitchen stainless looking good.


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RE: Can anything "seal" stainless steel appliances?

I don't care that much about "daily visual staining." The only reason I care about it at all on a daily basis is that the minerals in the water stick to the stainless so stubbornly that the brute force it takes to remove it will wear down the a spot on the stainless steel. The longer it is allowed to sit, the harder it is to remove the water marks,
If it wiped off easily without any risk of etching into the steel, then it could wait until a weekend kitchen cleaning to take care of.
I may try mineral oil.


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RE: Can anything "seal" stainless steel appliances?

You're right. Bar Keepers Friend is not a long-term solution. Its' main ingredient is oxalic acid, which of course damages the metal. I suggest a good cleaning, then rub on some mineral oil. I find this in drug stores, it has its medicinal uses, but it's a "food-grade' oil and can be used on wooden butcher block, so it might work on stainless steel. Don't need a lot.It has no odor. Buff with a soft cloth. Good luck.


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RE: Can anything "seal" stainless steel appliances?

My question 2 U is, why would U purchase SS in the first place? I had SS 35 years ago and it was top end. The husband was a chef. 1 could clean it in a heartbeat with things that would destroy the so called SS today. I hated it and when I purchased my second home and it was full of brand new SS and hardwood. The SS was given away and the floors were carpeted.

The only person that gives great advice on this site is greywings. She must B around my age. I will B 60, this coming June. If she comments, listen 2 her as she knows what she is talking about.


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RE: Can anything "seal" stainless steel appliances?

ed - [deleted]

This post was edited by albert_135 on Sat, May 18, 13 at 15:52


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RE: Can anything "seal" stainless steel appliances?

There is a paint/sealer called Sharkhide. It is used on aluminum boats to keep them from oxidizing when in salt water. It is applied to our boat and it does work. It does state you can use it on stainless steel. But it is expensive and you need to be knowledgeable in how to apply coatings. You would also need to be sure it is stainless steel and not some kind of fake material.

This is probably something you would want to pay to have professionally sprayed. It does put more of a satin finish on the highly polished aluminum, so that might not be what you envision on your SS. Also the cost would probably be prohibitive. The last time I purchased a quart it was a little over $75. You can google and check out their product.


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RE: Can anything "seal" stainless steel appliances?

There is a paint/sealer called Sharkhide. It is used on aluminum boats to keep them from oxidizing when in salt water. It is applied to our boat and it does work. It does state you can use it on stainless steel. But it is expensive and you need to be knowledgeable in how to apply coatings. You would also need to be sure it is stainless steel and not some kind of fake material.

This is probably something you would want to pay to have professionally sprayed. It does put more of a satin finish on the highly polished aluminum, so that might not be what you envision on your SS. Also the cost would probably be prohibitive. The last time I purchased a quart it was a little over $75. You can google and check out their product.


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RE: Can anything "seal" stainless steel appliances?

Eteinne - thanks for your kind words. I have lots of opinions, that's for sure. Don't know a thing about stainless steel.


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