There are many different metals in the world and unsurprisingly, they all come with their differences in how they should be cleaned. each has unique uses, properties, and behaviours. Cast iron is porous and hates soap and water. Copper develops protective tarnish that may make it more valuable. Stainless steel can get stained. Chrome is usually electroplated over other metals. Gold will get you mugged. All these metals have their quirks, but they also have something in common. Each of these metals can be cleaned at home. Each metal can be cleaned cheaply. Each metal can be cleaned using methods that are safe for you and the environment.
It’s important to understand that you have certain high level metals in industries like aerospace and medicine that aren’t the same as our standard household metals so they require a metal pretreatment cleaning to weave their magic and the solvents that are used take a lot more than just a squirt on the oven and a brush over with a sponge. For your household metals, you should look further afield! Cleaning aluminium takes more than a thorough scrubbing and sometimes can take a bit of highly intense cleaning products but avoid those harsher abrasives. Aluminium (aluminium) is the number one most abundant metal found in the Earth’s crust. With that being said, it’s no wonder that with our propensity for exploiting everything we can get our hands on, you will find something made from this metal in pretty much every home you see. Aluminium is cheap, it’s lightweight, and when it’s clean, it’s pretty nice to look at. You know, all shiny and silvery and stuff. Aluminium by itself isn’t all that useful. It’s too soft.
Under most circumstances it is mixed with other metals like copper, zinc, magnesium, or manganese to create an alloy with greater strength and durability. Even with other metals thrown in there, aluminium alloys are still quite malleable and can be used for an absolutely ridiculous number of things. You will find aluminium used for cans (of course), pots and pans, utensils, siding, boats, machinery, wheels, motors, gutters, blinds, electrical work, paints, and the list goes on and on and on. It makes good sense, along with being cheap, abundant, and easy to work with, the stuff is also very resistant to corrosion. This is due to aluminium’s affinity for oxygen. You know that dull grey that’s been taking over your nice new aluminium pot? That’s what I’m talking about. That’s aluminium oxide, and that’s what we’re here to get rid of today. Yes, it protects your aluminium from corrosion. But as soon as you clean it off, it starts coming back again.
Your aluminium is still protected, and now, because that layer of aluminium oxide isn’t nearly as thick as it was, your pan still looks nice. The method for cleaning aluminium found in this article is intended for unfinished aluminium like (but not limited to) that found in aluminium pots, pans, plates, cups, and utensils.