Why You Should Be Using Bar Keepers Friend To Clean Tarnished Cabinetry Hardware

As high-touch surfaces, cabinet handles quickly show signs of wear and tear. If your cabinetry hardware has lost its luster over the years, Bar Keepers Friend has a classic solution to this perennial problem. Their multi-purpose cleanser has been busting rust and restoring shine for over 140 years. It works well on many materials, including copper, stainless steel, and brass — what most cabinetry hardware is made of. The formula has stayed the same since 1882 thanks to its powerful, not-so-secret ingredient, oxalic acid. This naturally occurring compound is found in fruits and vegetables and is miraculously effective at dissolving rust and tarnish. It doesn't just reduce rust's surface appearance; it tackles the molecules holding these stains together and breaks them apart. As the cleanser removes tarnish from hardware, it preserves the aged look that gives brass knobs their vintage charm.

So, if you have a kitchen cabinet hardware rust problem, this cleanser is a good place to start. Before you begin cleaning, you should know what material your hardware is made of, as this will determine the best approach. You can also take preventative measures to keep your handles in good shape for much longer.

How to clean your cabinetry hardware with Bar Keepers Friend

Once you've established their material, remove the knobs and handles by hand. This cleanser is powerful and could damage your cabinets if you scrub the hardware pieces without removing them. It's also important to wear safety glasses, gloves, and a mask when cleaning with Bar Keepers Friend.

Soak the handles in lukewarm water with mild dish soap for a few minutes and remove them without drying. Add a small amount of Powdered Cleanser or Soft Liquid Cleanser to a non-abrasive cloth and clean the handles while wet. Use a toothbrush, Magic Eraser, or another scrubbing tool without metal for the hard-to-reach places. After one minute, rinse the hardware with water and repeat if necessary. Removing the tarnish and getting your hardware shining again may take a few rounds. Wearing gloves, buff the handles with a soft, damp cloth and allow them to dry before re-installing.

As for preventative care, materials that aren't stainless steel can be cleaned regularly with a damp cloth. Avoid using cleaning products, as they may do more harm than good. To renew rusted stainless steel, apply a cleanser made specifically for this material onto a cloth, and use this to clean the handles. The Bar Keepers Friend Stainless Steel Cleanser & Polish is a great choice. Combined with the occasional deep clean, rust and tarnish won't stand a chance.