If you are restoring your home and it has exposed stainless steel tubes for gas pipework or any other function, you may be wondering how to make those tubes look like new again. Luckily, stainless steel is a sturdy alloy that lasts longer than many other types of metal tubing, and that means that in most cases, you can restore old tubing without replacing it. Here are some ideas to help you:
1. Start With a Rinse
In many cases, stainless steel is easier to clean that it looks. Before bringing out the serious cleaners, try just rinsing the stainless steel tubing with a bit of water. Simply dampen a cloth and wipe down the tube. That can remove a lot of built up dirt.
2. Cut the Grease
If the stainless steel tubing is running through your kitchen or garage — for example, you may have this issue with gas pipelines as well as skylights in that area of your home — it may be coated in a layer of grease. To cut through the grease, consider putting just a bit of dish soap onto your rag. That can safely clean the stainless steel with damaging it.
3. Reach for the Vinegar and Soda Bicarbonate
To address stubborn stains, try the old mixture of vinegar and soda bicarbonate. These ingredients are readily available around most homes, and you can make a quick cleaner easily. Just mix white vinegar in with the soda bicarbonate until it forms a paste.
Then, apply the paste to your stainless steel pipes. You can use a toothbrush to scrub the cleaner in. Then, wipe with a wet cloth.
4. Add Some Oil
After you've spent some time removing dirt and grease, you're actually going to add a little oil back into the mix. This may sound counterproductive, but it's a quite effective way to get your stainless steel tubing to shine. Put a bit of olive oil on a rag, and use that to polish your newly clean tubes.
If the stainless steel tube is positioned so that one side is against a wall, feed one end of the rag behind the tube, and then pull that side out the other end. At that point the rag should be wrapped around the back of the tube, and you can pull it back and forth to polish the back of the tube.
5. Consider Replacements
In some cases, with renovations, you can't get everything back to the condition that you like. As a result, you may need to consider replacing your stainless steel tubes. Talk to a restoration expert to help you.