We installed new stainless steel appliances last year, and now I'm sort of regretting it! They look nice, but they are a pain to keep clean. I've been wiping down the fronts of the refrigerator, stove, etc. with soap and water. It gets them "clean" but doesn't really remove the fingerprints. I'm ok with that.
The range hood, on the other hand, collects dust as well as cooking grease and who knows what else. (It's a chimney style hood, so there's lots of exposed grime to be seen.) I've tried to clean it with hot water and soap, but I can't get through the coating of grease! I know there are "de-greasers," etc. out there, but we are of course looking for something non-toxic (and easy).
Ideas or suggestions? Thanks!
I use vinegar, straight or diluted. If there is a really gross section, I'll make up a paste of baking soda and water, smear the paste on and rub it off. Wipe with a damp cloth to make sure you get all the baking soda off, then wipe with vinegar to get rid of any streaking. These things work well for me, and are actually pretty quick. Not a lot of scrubbing needed.
I use bar keepers friend mixed with a little water to clean my stainless stove. It's awesome for getting rid of that grime/oil layer you're describing. It's a bit more $ than other cleansers, but it lasts and you don't need that much to do the job.
I used to wash with soap and water then followup with a little olive oil to remove smudges. But, I started using something I found in our garage and it works better than anything I've used in the past...Bi-O-Kleen's Soy Lube. It cleans and shines the stainless. I purchased several bottles years ago but I believe they still make it.
I also use barkeepers friend - they have a "stove top" cleaner that is wonderful. To get it to shine you can buy the stainless steel cleaner - really any brand - but you must buff it after with a dry cloth going with the grain.
Make sure you aren't using anything abrasive (including scrubby pads) because you don't want to scratch it.