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Question DetailsAsked on 12/7/2015

Who would I hire to refinish a stainless steel dining room table?

There's apparently rust and some marks...I'm not sure who to hire to help.

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Right people would be a commercial kitchen equipment and appliance comapny in most cases. Or a commercial cleaner specializing in commercial (restaurant/hotel/etc) kitchens. Some Appliance Repair - Large contractors also do this (mostly on stainless ranges and reefers and such), as do some Countertop installers (those who do stainless countertops and cutting blocks) - that last one or appliance repair would probably be the best category in Search the List for you to call and ask several if they do it. Stainless tables are so rare in homes that I doubt a furniture Repair place would know how to do it.

There are basically 3 types of stainless finishes for tables/countertops - firstly, ,polished and sealed (meaning it has been polished, then a clear sealer put over it) so to clean it beyond soap and water means taking the sealer off, removing the rust and such, then resealing it.

Secondly, bare stainless generally comes in two forms - polished (very smooth and mirror-like) and brushed - with highly visible scratches or grooves in either straight parallel lines or random orbits. The first type you use a very fine non-abrasive cleaner on (like a non-abrasive tub and tile cleaner), or if scratched lightly or rusted then a very fine grit stainless polishing compound or Bar Keepers Friend, using a random broad circular wiping motion.

The brushed type, with clearly visible grooved pattern, you use a coarser "brushed finish" polish on, following the pattern - random circles for the circular pattern, perfectly straight following the lines if the straight pattern.

A pro would do any largish area with a buffing bonnet on a drill or more likely a polisher, for minor areas or light polishing you can do it yourself by hand.

Polish available online and in box and appliance stores and from appliance manufacturers, many of which have videos on how to do it too. 409, 3M, Weiman (sp ?), Zep, Autosol and other companies make it. Some have 2 compositions for the two different surface textures, some one polish and you use soft buffing rag with one, nylon scrubbing pad or fine steel wool with the other - see instructions.

If more of a rough and tumble family table or work table, then scratch-free (safe for ceramic and tubs and stainless) version of tub and tile cleaner like scrubbing bubbles or Comet for smooth finish, or the abrasive Comet works well for the brushed finish.

If the rust is actually the table rusting (rather than rust from something metallic and wet sitting on it like a brillo pad or such), then clearly it is not the best stainless - and you might have to use a fine steel wool or abrasive pad or in extreme cases even emory cloth (fine carbide snadpaper) to buff out the rust, woking the buffed area out into the surrounding area to blend it. Lots of manufacturer videos on hjow to do this - not tough, just don't get too aggressive at first till you see how it goes, and remember any abrasive scrubbing that is done more in one place than the others WILL show as a different gloss on the surface when done.

Once the table is polished to remove the rust and marks (and cleaned off afterwards with Dawn or equal), you will need to rub some fine machine oil (gun oil, sewing machine, oil, or equal into it to stop the rusting, then wipe off with dry cloth (paper towel does not get into gooves well enough) - or if a food prep surface use olive oil or vegetable oil or whatever oilyou use on your meat chopping block and let soak for a few minutes, then dry-scrub clean with a paper towel to remove excess.

Answered 3 years ago by LCD

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