Taking Care of Stainless Steel Cutlery
We pride ourselves on designing and manufacturing products to the highest possible standard, so that they can be enjoyed day after day. However, even the best products sometimes need a little love and attention, so please take a few minutes to read this information on how best to care for your cutlery.
What is stainless steel?
Robert Welch cutlery is made from the finest quality stainless steel. Spoons and forks are made from 18/10 stainless steel. Knives are made from stainless steel and are then hardened so the blades retain a good cutting edge. "Stainless" actually means "stain resistant" so there are a few things you need to do to protect your cutlery.
Washing by hand - recommended!
- Rinse cutlery to remove all traces of food as soon as possible after use.
- Wash gently in warm soapy water with a soft cloth.
- Do not soak your cutlery.
- Dry thoroughly immediately after washing.
If not washing by hand, we advise using 'all-in-one dishwasher tablets' and 'microfibre cloths' for drying and polishing cutlery.
Occasional application of mineral oil to the black handles will maintain their colour. Remove any excess oil before use.
In the dishwasher:
- Ensure that your dishwasher settings are set as per the manufacturers' instructions for water hardness in your area.
- Maintain the correct salt and rinse aid levels in your dishwasher.
- Rinse cutlery to remove all traces of food as soon as possible after use and before placing in the dishwasher.
- Load cutlery basket loosely for good water circulation between the cutlery.
- Do not wash stainless steel cutlery with other metals, as this can cause marks to migrate onto the stainless steel.
- Avoid dishwasher detergent with any citrus additives as these can damage the surface if the stainless steel.
- Avoid using short and low heat cycles when selecting your dishwasher programme.
- Avoid using the rinse and hold cycle.
- For best results remove cutlery as soon as the programme is complete and dry by hand if necessary. This is especially important for knives as they are more prone to discolouration if regularly left in a moist atmosphere.
Understanding persistent marks:
Rainbow/Blue-ing: There are numerous causes for these temporary surface blemishes, including detergents not being washed off correctly and contact with very hot fat or foods that are high in acidity.
Pitting: This particularly affects knife blades as they are made from a specifically hardened steel. Natural salts and acids present in food can cause pit marks if left on for a long period, or pitting can also be caused by the salts used in the dishwashing process.
Rust marks: Stainless steel can't rust, but it can receive marks of rust or black from other items in your sink and dishwasher such as cast-iron, silver, silver-plate, steel wool or non-stainless steel implements.
Chalking: Chalky streaks may appear if un-softened water is left to dry on your cutlery.
How to remove unwanted marks
By following the steps listed, you shouldn't experience any stubborn marks. However, if for any reason you do:
- After hand-washing, clean with a branded non-abrasive stainless steel cream using a soft cloth.
- Avoid scouring with pads or abrasive cleaners as they will scratch your cutlery.
Care of Silver Cutlery:
To avoid tarnish:
- Tarnish can be caused by contact with certain foods, being exposed to certain temperatures and excessively high humidity conditions.
- Gently wash your silver cutlery after use, drying items individually with a soft dishcloth. Lining the sink with a towel, will protect the surface of your cutlery from any scratches.
- Wash silver cutlery separately to other metals, such as stainless steel, to keep surfaces in optimum condition.
- The best detergents for silver cutlery are free of citrus and phosphate additives.
To clean silver cutlery:
- A silver cleaner or 'dip' can restore tarnished silver cutlery to its optimum condition.
- Ensure silver cutlery is only dipped momentarily and wash off the solution thoroughly with warm water.
- * A phosphate free detergent and non-abrasive cloth are recommended.