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Kitchen sinks come in many shapes and sizes.  Enameled cast iron remains a popular choice, but stainless steel, copper and other solid surface materials are also frequently purchased.

No matter what type of sink you have, you’ll want to preserve it as long as possible.  That means proper maintenance.  Here are a few tips:

  • For cast iron sinks, clean the bowl as soon as you are done using it, using a non-abrasive cleaner (abrasive cleaners will wear the finish down, making the finish porous and susceptible to staining).
  • Be especially diligent with fruit and vegetable juices and cleaning acids.  An acid resistant sink will safely resist these things but only if the acid is removed within a few hours.
  • Clean enameled surfaces with hot water and soap.  If you do use a cleaner, make sure it is non-abrasive.  Tea and coffee grounds will stain enameled surfaces if not cleaned quickly.
  • For stainless steel sinks, use a cleanser made specifically for metal.  Apply cleanser to a damp, soft cloth and rub the stainless steel with the grain.  For deeper scratches, you can use a 220-grit wet/dry sandpaper.  Pour vegetable oil onto the sandpaper, and rub it with the grain.  Finally, after polishing the sink, you can apply a coat of automotive wax, which will both make it shine and protect against future scratching.
  • For copper sinks, you should only really need a mild soap.  Also, run the water continuously when working with acidic foods, as they can wear the finish.  If your copper sink has a finish, never use brass polish.  If it does not have a finish, you can use a brass polish.

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