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Remove Scratches From Stainless Steel With Vinegar and Olive Oil

Stainless steel appliances look amazing — for the first 10 seconds, that is. If you’re a mom, then you know exactly what we’re talking about. In a house full of kids (husband included), a pristine stainless steel fridge or dishwasher can go from fab to drab — think water stains and sticky fingerprints — in a matter of minutes. But help is on the way! We’ve figured out the quickest and easiest way to make your flat and dirty stainless steel appliances appear shiny and new. And you’ll only need two things: Vinegar and olive oil.

This may sound like the beginning of a tasty sub sandwich or salad dressing, but hear us out. This method really works! Here’s how to get your stainless steel appliances shining again.


  • Vinegar (works best in a spray bottle)

  • Paper towels (optional)

  • Soft microfiber cloth

  • Olive oil (though any oil, even baby oil, will do the trick)


1. Get your supplies together. Make sure you’ve got everything you need before you start.

2. Decide on the direction of the grain. The term “grain” is usually used for wood, but stainless steel has a grain, too! But, you’ll have to look closely. The grain will either be running horizontally or vertically. To clean your stainless steel appliance, just rub in the direction of the grain.

3. Do a pre-clean. Before you really get into it, spray your fridge or dishwasher with a generous amount of vinegar.

4. Wipe it down! Using a soft cloth, wipe the vinegar off in the direction of the grain. This will give your appliance a nice initial shine.

5. Put your cloth into a bit of oil. You won’t need a lot. Just dip the tip of the cloth; you can always get more if you need it.

6. Polish. Use your now-oiled cloth to polish off your appliance. Remember to go with the grain. And ta-da! You’ve got yourself a shiny new appliance.

See the Sears Home Services video below for step-by-step instructions on how to properly clean stainless steel:

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