For a fixture whose function is to clean the dishes off which we eat, the kitchen sink can be remarkably filthy. Without regular cleaning, the kitchen sink will quickly become a cesspool of bacteria, mildew, and unwanted odors.
Fortunately, we are expert home cleaners with a wealth of experience cleaning kitchen sinks and a dedication to making lives better one clean home at a time. Today, allow me to offer some helpful tips for how to clean the sink in your kitchen!
How to Clean Your Kitchen Sink: What you’ll need.
What you’ll need to clean your kitchen sink will depend on two factors: (1) What is your sink made of, and (2) how dirty is your sink?
The material making up your sink is critically important information to consider before you begin cleaning. Porcelain is sensitive to different chemical agents than is stainless steel. I’ll do my best in writing this to cover a wide variety of needs, but I recommend consulting the manual for your sink. Most brands keep a free PDF online!
Below is a list of cleaning supplies that will work well for most sinks. Depending on the state of your sink, you may not need every item listed. Nevertheless, having them handy will ensure you can tackle even the toughest job.
Items you’ll need:
- Dish soap. We love Dawn Platinum!
- Baking Soda.
- Fresh Lemons.
- White Vinegar.
- Access to water
- A spray bottle
- A palm brush dedicated to cleaning the sink, bathtub, etc. Don’t use the same brush you use for washing dishes!
- One or two no-scratch sponges. Again, don’t use the same sponge with which you wash dishes!
- One or two small Ziploc or similar bag
- A couple of sturdy rubber bands.
Items that help:
- Soft scrub
- Sturdy rubber cleaning gloves
- A small bucket
- A toothbrush or similar stiff-bristled utility brush.
How to Clean Your Kitchen Sink
Step 1: Make it fun!
This is the first step on every guide of every chore I write about, and with good reason. The first step to having a clean, life-giving home is to make the chores that lead there as approachable as possible.
Linking things you love to the chores you do is an excellent way to reduce fatigue while associating future tasks with activities that excite you. So listen to your favorite music or podcast. Put on a funny sitcom in the background. Whatever works well for you!
Step 2: How to clean a kitchen sink basin
As I’ve mentioned, sinks come in many different materials. How you clean yours will depend on that material. I will dive into cleaning unique materials like copper, concrete, and natural stone in a future post. Today, I will focus on two of the most common materials for sinks: Stainless steel and porcelain.
Step 3: How to clean a stainless steel sink
We’ll be doing a deep dive into cleaning stainless steel features in the future. Stainless steel is as resilient as it is sleek, and except for a few corrosive chemicals, most cleaning agents will be safe to use.
If your stainless steel sink only needs a little bit of upkeep, evenly spray a mixture of equal parts water and peroxide or water and white vinegar. Dust a barely damp sponge with baking soda and scrub the sink. Begin at the top ledge and moving down the sides, pushing any grime towards the drain. Finish by rinsing the sink with warm water.
Step 4: How to clean a porcelain sink
If you aren’t careful with what chemicals you use and the abrasiveness of your brushes or sponges, porcelain sinks will quickly begin to wear down and take on a dull, scuffed, even pock-marked appearance.
Don’t take risks here. Combine warm water with dish soap and use the soft side of a sponge to carefully clean from the top of the sink down towards the drain.
If you have trouble with a stubborn mess, gently use the abrasive side of a non-scratch sponge or a soft-bristled toothbrush. Do your best!
If your porcelain sink is white and has lost some of its brightness, mix a cup of water with a tablespoon of liquid bleach. Put on some protective gloves and spray your already-damp sink with the mixture, applying evenly to your sink’s surface with a clean sponge. Rinse with warm water.
Step 5: How to clean the faucets and other hardware
Cleaning your faucet is an important step. Not only is it the most visible component of your sink from a distance, but it is also the place on the sink where water leaks, pools up, deposits lime and other minerals, and even collects gunk and mildew.
Step 6: Clean your faucet’s aerator.
Your sink probably has an aerator on the faucet. An aerator is a small device that helps regulate the stream of water as it comes out, allowing for a smooth, clean-flowing stream of water.
Because water passes through the aerator on its way out of the spout, it is an often overlooked feature that can build up with minerals, affecting water pressure and purity, before eventually wearing out.
To easily clean your sink’s aerator without removing it, fill a sandwich-sized Ziploc bag halfway with white vinegar. Submerge the spout of your sink’s faucet into the white vinegar, and hold it in place with one or two rubber bands. Leave the bag there for up to an hour. You should notice the vinegar begin to brown. After an hour has passed, remove the bag and run the faucet.
BONUS TIP: Think about changing your sink’s aerator altogether. It has probably been a long time since anybody replaced it, and conventional wisdom says to replace the aerator once per year! Replacing this will require a wrench, needle-nose pliers, and a replacement aerator (which means knowing what kind to get for your faucet), and we will cover this task in greater detail in a future blog.
Step 7: Clean the outside of your faucet!
Dip the head of a toothbrush in white vinegar and brush at the seams where water may leak. This could be at the base of the spout or on the lever that controls water flow. Brush thoroughly at any hard water spots or mineral deposits.
Next, pray the faucet with a 1:1 water/peroxide or water/white vinegar mixture and wipe down with a damp rag.
Step 8: How to clean your garbage disposal
Garbage disposals are an incredible tool for keeping your sink from clogging up, but without routine maintenance, they may begin to collect bits of old food and cause an odor.
For a quick, easy way to refresh your garbage disposal, begin cleaning by pouring into it a bit of baking soda, followed by a small amount of white vinegar or your vinegar & water mixture. Allow a few minutes to pass until the mixture stops bubbling up.
Next, cut up a lemon into small chunks or wedges and drop them into your garbage disposal, rinds, and all. Run some water and activate your garbage disposal until the water drains smoothly!
BONUS TIP: Drop a handful or two of ice into the garbage disposal with the lemons. This will sharpen the blades a bit, but more importantly, it will help collect any hard-to-reach gunk as the ice breaks down into small chips.
Step 9: Clean your tools!
A clean sink will hardly matter if the tools you use to wash your dishes are filthy. Don’t sleep on replacing your sponges regularly, cleaning your brushes by soaking the brush-head in white vinegar, and washing dish-rags with the laundry.
Step 10: Maintain!
The chore of cleaning your sink will be so much easier if you are consistent with maintenance! When you finish washing your dishes, spray down the sink with your peroxide or white vinegar solution and wipe it down! Clean and replace your aerator in regular intervals! Keeping up with these tasks will keep your sink sparkling and keep you from huge, frustrating chores.
We at Master Clean USA believe that a clean, organized home can be life-changing. We exist to improve the lives of those we serve, one clean home at a time. Keeping your sink clean can make a tremendous difference, and we hope this guide helped you!
Are you interested in more helpful advice for maintaining a clean home? Keep an eye on our blog for more awesome tips!