Many people believe “stainless” steel is just that – steel that will not stain. But in a moment of marketing genius a person named it that. In reality it is high quality steel treated so it ability to stain, rust, etc. is “less likely” that the same steel left untreated.
In daily life the enemy of is the environment. The very air we breathe can cause irreparable damage to regular steel or iron. All the metal bridges in the world are constantly scraped and repainted, once finished the crews just started at the other side again. A stainless steel construction would certainly hamper this corrosion; but the cost to the municipalities’ budget would be prohibitive. You may remember the DeLoren automobile from the 1970’s; its shell was constructed from stainless steel; but many owners had paint applied over the steel to get a shine unavailable with stainless steel.
One of the complaints often expressed about these cars was that sweaty, oily hands left a stain on the surface of the car. This could and can be solved using fingerprint resistant coating on the stainless steel. Applying this microscopically thin clear coat layer the surface is not only resistant to fingerprints, but a multitude of other common stains. The specialized coating is applied to the steel in a thickness of 3-5 µm – that is one-thousandth of a millimeter. This coating also adds abrasion and scratch resistance to the steel’s surface. There is also another type of coating that will improve the usability in corrosive uses such as boats subject to salt water; a third is made specifically for food service uses.
Applying the “fingerprint resistant” coating to the stainless steel increases not only fingerprint and stain resistance, but also the ability to fight scratching and excessive wear to the surface. A further benefit is the ease the surface is kept clean and glossing after applying the coating.
Using this type of coated steel on your kitchen cabinets will enable the cabinets to not only last for decades but will keep them beautiful for their entire lifespan. Be sure your cabinet manufacturer takes the time to explain your options when ordering or buying stainless steel cabinets. Many of the large home improvement chains import their cabinets from China and often these cabinets are lower quality steel and not fingerprint resistant. After a few months in your kitchen the stains from your hand will become apparent.