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Types Of Abrasive Cleaner & When To Use Which! [Explained]

This article is for informational purposes. Always seek the advice of qualified professionals.

Need an extra bit of muscle to deep clean your house? Well, then it’s a lucky day for you! Because you can use your handy abrasives for the job.

What type of abrasive cleaner to use for your purpose?

Abrasive cleaners are basically used to clean heavy-duty build-ups. These come in three forms- powder, liquid, solid, and disinfectant. Moreover, there are tools you can combine with it. You’ll find more categories within each type. As you follow through, you’ll know exactly the type of abrasive you’ll need. 

This was basically just the tip of the iceberg. To know more about these abrasives and their uses, dive into our in-depth segment!

Different Types Of Abrasive Cleaner

Abrasives are basically materials that wear off dirt by rubbing. They might be whiting, pumice, rottenstones, volcanic ash, marble, quartz, silica, felspar, etc.

The main purpose of abrasive cleaner is to remove the rigid dirt from small areas. These cleaners come in many forms. We’ll get to that in a bit. 

Before you use any of the products, check the label. As these are very tough, they can ruin your surface!

Let’s figure out what type of cleaner to use and when!

Powdered Or Dry Abrasives

This type of abrasive has been around for a while. And they’re mostly used for household cleaning.

These powdered abrasives have cleaning and polishing elements in them. Some of which are known as feldspar, calcite, silica, and quartz. 

They also have a little addition of surfactants in them. Which further helps to remove the excess oil. Especially from the sink after washing dishes.

Some even contain bleaches in them. These help to remove stains from beverages, mold, or food. While there are others that contain oxalic acid, also known as sodium hydrosulfite. These work on removing rust, stain off of a surface.

You can even use this between your countertop and dishwasher. This will make the gap all clean and gunk-free!

Liquid Or Wet Abrasives

These liquid abrasives are made of a suspension of solid abrasive products. It’s basically a mixture of solid particles with the liquid one. But the solid particles aren’t actually dissolved in it. Therefore making the mixture thicker.

Due to this suspension, they contain more surfactants and gentler abrasives. Especially when compared to powdered abrasives.

This abrasive allows a gentler clean on your surface. But this one will have a stronger effect comparatively!

If you have a stubborn greasy mess in your kitchen. This will be your answer!

Disinfecting Abrasives

There are abrasives that are used for disinfecting surfaces. They have antimicrobial chemicals in them. This helps reduce the growth of bacteria on solid surfaces

The antimicrobial chemicals might include quaternary ammonium compounds or sodium hypochlorite. The latter is also known as household bleach. Moreover, some even contain pine oils. But these aren’t the only ingredients, there can be many more!

Before using these, make sure to read the product label. And use the product as directed in the package. They usually come with a cleaning and disinfecting step to better guide you!

Now you know which type you need to use for what purposes! 

To make this a little easier we’ve suggested using the best products! Here are some of our most recommended abrasives for you:

Product 1
Product 2

Check these out and trust me, these will blow your mind!

Tools To Use With Abrasive  Cleaner

For more precise cleaning, you’ll need something to complement the abrasive. 

We can divide the tools into three parts: mild, moderate, and strong abrasive tools. And the powdered, liquid, or disinfectant one can be used with each of these. 

Choose your abrasive according to your stain. Then match the tool according to the stain’s intensity.

Mild Abrasive Tool

You can use this to scrub your daily pots and pans. You can also scour your oven interior. Because you don’t want your oven to have that dead mouse smell.

These include your usual plastic mesh pads and nylon-coated sponges. Also, the fine brass wool, whiting, and rottenstone fall under this category.

With this, you can even clean your furniture and countertops. 

Caution: Make sure to scrub gently. Because if you rub too hard, you might scratch your surface.

Moderate Abrasive Tool

These are used to remove burnt food off of a pan. Or even to remove the crusty grease and leftover on the pan. This abrasive is not for everyday use. Use this only when the milder cleaner won’t budge the dirty spot!

This category includes fine steel wool and fine pumice. Steel wool is available in different grades. There are options from 0000-superfine to 3-coarse. 

Usually, the grade 00-very fine and finer are the recommended ones. Suppose your pressure cooker’s water dried up, your food inside will burn. Here you can use a 00-very fine one for scrubbing.

Strong Abrasive Tool

These are basically used on barbeque grills and untreated ovens. That stubborn build-up has no strength when this kind of abrasive tool is used.

We have medium and coarse steel wool, to begin with. These also include metal mesh cloths, metal brushes, and balls.  Moreover, you can use coarse pumice, sand, and silica.

Caution: If you see your cleaner and the mild and moderate tool not working. Then opt for these. They are very strong, so improper use can damage your surface!

Well, these are basically the types of abrasives to choose from. You’ll have to find one which serves your purpose and its complementary tool.


Question: Is baking soda an abrasive cleaner?
Answer: Yes, most definitely. Baking soda is a mild abrasive cleaner. It is sodium bicarbonate. This is a natural element that maintains the pH level. Therefore, it is great for removing stains from the countertop, sink, and fine china.

Question: How do I make an abrasive cleaner?
Answer: For this, you need to pour 2 tablespoons of bicarbonate soda into a bowl. Then add 1 tablespoon of castile soap. Then mix it together well. After that, add a bit of cold water, until it mashes into a paste.

Question: Why should you be concerned with the overuse of abrasives?
Answer: Although abrasive cleaners are meant to deep clean grease and stuff. They can over time take some of the coat and shine from the surface. Hence, read the instructions thoroughly when using a product.


With this, we’ll be parting ways. We hope you now have more info about abrasive cleaner. Well then, what’s stopping you from making your home squeaky clean!

Do remember to read the instructions on the packaging before you start.

Have a great time cleaning and good luck!