Upgrading to a white porcelain sink can add a finishing touch to any kitchen. Unfortunately, maintaining one can sometimes be a burden. An overzealous cleaning method with the wrong products not only creates extra work, but also removes the shine by eroding the glazed enamel surface. This eventually results in an off-white, stained enamel sink. On the other hand, by using eco-friendly cleaning aids and sensible methods, your sink will remain stain-free and retain its sparkle for decades.
Wash your sink daily with a soft cloth and dish-washing liquid. Wipe dry after rinsing.
Remove grey surface scratches with oven cleaner: Apply oven cleaner and let stand for 15 minutes. Use the pot scrubbing side of a sponge and vigorously scrub the area of the scratches. Rinse well.
Eliminate rust stains by gently rubbing the stains with a mixture of baking soda and non-gel toothpaste.
Use pure white vinegar to clean the sink once a week. Apply directly from a spray bottle. Soak the surface and faucets. Leave for five minutes, scrub and rinse thoroughly. This will shine up the sink and disinfect the surface.
Get rid of stubborn stains with environmentally friendly oxygen bleach instead of using harsh surface-eroding chlorine bleach. Oxygen bleach powder is readily available and contains sodium percarbonate--a biodegradable non-toxic ingredient. Follow the directions on the package and mix up a bowl of cleaning solution. Saturate six kitchen towels and drape them over the sides and across the bottom of the sink. Leave for 15 minutes. Lift the towels and scour the sink with a plastic bristle scrubbing brush. Focus on stains if there are any left; the brush will lift them right off. Rinse well and leave to air dry. Repeat once a month or when stains appear.
Eradicate hard-water deposits every 2 to 3 months if necessary. Fill the sink to the brim with hot water and stir in three cups of white vinegar. Do this before retiring for the night and leave till morning. Drain, scrub and rinse.
Use a rubber sink mat or liner to avoid scratches caused by pots and cutlery. Remove after use and rinse the sink. Leaving the mat in place for extended periods will cause stains. Faint surface scratches can be removed by rubbing with baking soda. Liquid oxygen bleach should be avoided---it contains hydrogen peroxide instead of sodium percarbonate and is not as effective as the homemade variety.
Oxygen cleaner mixed with vinegar causes a harmful chemical reaction. Don't use them both on the same day. Open the windows and wear rubber gloves when working with oven cleaner, bleach and vinegar.