Best way to Remove "Oil Stains" from Stainless Steel

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Forum topic by wilschroter posted 09-22-2020 10:35 AM 354 views 0 times favorited 3 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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158 posts in 1408 days

09-22-2020 10:35 AM

Following up on my table refinishing project, the existing frame of the table which is stainless steel has some stains around it from the last time I added penetrating oil to the Ipe planks.

Any tricks for removing these stains? They have been on there for years, but now that the planks are taken off, I’d love to do a deep clean on the frame.

3 replies so far

View John Smith's profile

John Smith

2726 posts in 1046 days

#1 posted 09-22-2020 12:00 PM

my experience with weathered stainless is a buffer and automotive cutting compound.
then move up the ladder to polishing compounds until you are satisfied with the luster.
stainless can be buffed up to a shine just like brass and copper – and lasts longer.
elbow grease – lots and lots of elbow grease.


-- there is no educational alternative to having a front row seat in the School of Hard Knocks. --

View Foghorn's profile


571 posts in 270 days

#2 posted 09-22-2020 03:42 PM

If it’s an outdoor table, you may want to passivate it after polishing using an oxalic based cleaner.

-- Darrel

View Woodknack's profile


13503 posts in 3263 days

#3 posted 09-23-2020 04:27 AM

Alkaline cleaners are usually used on oils (Mr Clean, 409, Windex, Zep, Simple Green, etc.)
Acid is used to clean stainless – vinegar or lemon juice (citric acid), start gentle and work up.
You might need a 2 prong approach. Try acid, if that doesn’t work try degreaser, if that stains use acid to remove it.

-- Rick M,

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