The Pros and Cons of Stainless Steel Appliances

Considering a new fridge, oven or dishwasher? Here's what you should know before investing in stainless steel appliances.

stainless steel appliances and fridgekaramysh/Shutterstock

A buyer’s guide to stainless steel appliances

When your fridge dies, your range operates only on high, or your dishwasher starts leaking, it’s time to go appliance shopping. While the task of replacing or updating can be fun for the opinionated, it’s a headache for the indecisive. Without fail, you’ll walk by a row of beautiful stainless steel appliances and think: is this right for me? Should I go stainless this time around? Before you decide, peruse these pros and cons of this popular kitchen appliance finish.

The Pros of Stainless Steel Appliances

  • It looks pretty spectacular. Stainless steel is the go-to option if you want your kitchen to look modern, sleek and trendy. There’s a reason it’s still the top choice of many kitchen designers. (Want to keep it sparkling? Check out these pro tips for cleaning your oven, stovetop and microwave.)
  • It’s resistant to the bad stuff. Because of its elemental makeup, stainless steel is incredibly durable. It fights off rust, fire and heat which makes it top-choice for those who want an appliance that will last and not show wear and tear.
  • It lasts. If your goal is to have an appliance that lasts as long as possible on the inside and out, then choose stainless.

The Cons of Stainless Steel Appliances

  • It shows all the smudges. It’s well-known that stainless steel appliances leave fingerprint evidence like they’re preparing to prove a case. On top of that, they show every bit of smudge and grime. If you have children, you’ll need to clean many times a day… and many times more if you’re what some call an “inventive chef” (a.k.a. a hot mess in the kitchen). (Psst—here are 13 kitchen appliance mistakes everyone makes.)
  • It’s not cheap. Plan to stretch the pocketbook if you’re going against white or black appliances. Stainless is often the most expensive option.
  • (Sometimes) It’s non-magnetized. Some stainless appliances aren’t magnetic which can be a pain if you like to post art projects, lists, or awkward holiday family photos on the fridge.

Considering a full remodel? Don’t swing a sledgehammer until you’ve consulted Bryan Baeumler’s kitchen reno tips.

The Family Handyman
Originally Published on The Family Handyman