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How do I clean my stainless steel kettles inside and out?
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Unhookthestars
Senior Member


Joined: 8 Jul 2012
Posts: 25
Location: San Francisco, CA
Expertise: I love coffee

Posted Wed Jun 5, 2013, 7:17pm
Subject: How do I clean my stainless steel kettles inside and out?
 

Hello everyone,

I have both a Bonavita Variable Temperature Electric Kettle and a manual kettle with a wood handle, both stainless steel.  The former is several months old and I've started noticing some brown oil-like stains around the brim where it meets the lid; the latter is over a year old and is showing some water stains and what look like lime deposits.  I have to admit that I'm not the most meticulous person when it comes to regular maintenance, but I'm trying to be a better coffee man.  Question:  What is the best way to clean both the inside and outside of a stainless steel electric and manual kettle?  I can't find specific instructions for these specific kettles (I either threw away the manuals that came with my purchase or there were none to begin with).  On a related note, how often should I be giving these kettles a good cleaning?

Thank you in advance for any advice you can pass on!
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NobbyR
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NobbyR
Joined: 10 Jul 2011
Posts: 2,056
Location: Germany
Expertise: I love coffee

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Posted Wed Jun 5, 2013, 11:08pm
Subject: Re: How do I clean my stainless steel kettles inside and out?
 

Denture cleaner tablets work miriacles on the insides of stainless steel kettles. You just have to rinse it thoroughly afterwards in order to get rid of the aftertaste.

 
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"This drink of the Satan is so delicious that it would be a shame to leave it to the infidels." (Pope Clement VIII on coffee, when he was urged to ban the beverage)
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Buckley
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Joined: 25 Jan 2011
Posts: 423
Location: Internet
Expertise: I love coffee

Posted Thu Jun 6, 2013, 2:26am
Subject: Re: How do I clean my stainless steel kettles inside and out?
 

Bar Keepers Friend is a scouring powder specifically made for tarnished metal.  I use it and it has never scratched any brushed SS surfaces such as the Bonavita and it chemically releases the stains and tarnish nicely.  For sure, I would try it on the outsides of both kettles, where you cannot soak the denture tablets.  I have never used Nobbys suggestion, but I would try that first on the inside just to see if it is as easy as he says.  If you are not satisfied with that, you can use Bar Keepers Friend on the inside, as well, but it always requires some scrubbing and you will likely need a specialty brush or deformable sponge to work it into the angle between the kettle bottom and the inside walls.  It, too, will require thorough rinsing and wiping to remove all residue, maybe also a boil-and-dump rinse or two.  We remove lime scale with citric acid, easily available online or in wine and beer making supply stores.  My own preferred answer to your question is to never clean them unless the scale is interfering with heating or brewing.  To prevent lime build up without spending a lot on softeners, see http://coffeegeek.com/forums/coffee/machines/608970.

Buckley
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ronburleson
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Joined: 3 May 2012
Posts: 19
Location: Corona, Ca.
Expertise: Just starting

Posted Thu Jun 6, 2013, 5:48am
Subject: Re: How do I clean my stainless steel kettles inside and out?
 

I have a stainless steel thermos I use daily at work. It gets very dark and oily in a hurry. I use my espresso machine cleaning powder (like Puly Caff or Joglo). I run it through my coffee maker then pour it into the thermos and let is sit. The carafe from the coffee maker and the thermos both come out sparkling clean. The thermos looks brand new when I am done.

Ron
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Unhookthestars
Senior Member


Joined: 8 Jul 2012
Posts: 25
Location: San Francisco, CA
Expertise: I love coffee

Posted Thu Jun 6, 2013, 5:32pm
Subject: Re: How do I clean my stainless steel kettles inside and out?
 

Thank you Nobby, Buckley, and Ron for your helpful replies!

Nobby -- I never thought of denture tablets but I just might give them a try.

Buckley -- I appreciate the detailed response and the great link on water softening and scaling.   BTW, as I said in my original post, I tend NOT to be meticulous about coffee equipment maintenance, so your inclination toward refraining from cleaning unless absolutely necessary appeals to me. ;)  That said, I already have both Bon Ami and Barkeeper's Friend handy, so I might as well try one of those on the exterior of the kettle.  As for the interior, aside from Barkeeper's and denture tablets, ehow.com suggests using distilled white vinegar.  As with the two previous options, it looks like several rinses might be necessary to get the smell of vinegar out.  See the link below.

Click Here (www.ehow.com)

Ron -- I don't have an espresso machine, but I'm guessing this is the only option that won't require more than a couple of rinses to get rid of any unpleasant odors.  Thanks for the tip!
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