Sink stains are as varied as the sinks available on the market.  I am sometimes contacted for advice on the issue and preceding articles cover part of my response based on questioner not providing a complete picture of what we are dealing with.

7.  What do I recommend for an action plan?

A1.  Assuming the preceding observations are correct, I recommend you develop a scheduled de-staining process that requires training as to the safe use of some of the products (generic brands) that should NOT be mixed together due to possible injury or further damage.  I cannot take any responsibility for misapplication of the following recommendations:

A2.  Note that your vendor should have their own brand of the products I am recommending and they can substitute as appropriate.

A3.  ONLY test one sink at a time and document the various tests so that you can determine the most appropriate and safest process to use for final steps.  After each test inspect closely for damage and stop immediately if there is observable damage.

A4.  As a precaution, use plenty of ventilation and appropriate PPE (personal protective equipment).

A5.  Mix a poultice of Comet with bleach (or similar product) with water and scrub into the stained area with a blue or green scrubby pad.  (an alternate product is Bar Keepers Friend which is similar).

A6.  Allow this mix to stay for 5 to 10 minutes, then rinse while scrubbing with a small stiff brush if the sink is very porous.  If you note lightening of the stains, repeat once or twice more as it may take repetition to soak into the enamel.

A7.  DO NOT mix the poultice with acids or other cleaning products, including bleach, pine scent, etc. Consult with your vendor.

A8.  If this works then you have a process for lightening the stains which can be repeated as necessary to keep it looking cleaner.  The key is to determine how often it will be necessary to repeat the de-staining process.  This could be weekly or even monthly based on use.

A9.  On a daily basis use a mild disinfectant detergent will sanitize/disinfect but not deal with the stains very well.

A10. Under no circumstances should you use a pumice stone or harsh abrasives since you are dealing with a painted surface that is beginning to age.

A11. You may still have to use a de-scaling process (phosphoric acid/vinegar) for mineral deposits but they should not be used at the same time as the bleach products.  

A12. Your local vendor is crucial in finding a safe, effective solution to this problem.  All I can do is make general observations based on information available at this time.  

A13. Ask your vendor if they carry any products for re-glazing or brightening sinks.  

The type sink (enamel, Corian, stainless steel or ????) will determine the best and safest approach.

Your comments and questions are always welcome. I hope to hear from you soon. Until then, keep it clean...


Mickey Crowe has been involved in the industry for over 35 years. He is a trainer, speaker and consultant. You can reach Mickey at 678.314.2171 or