How To Clean Silver
When learning how to clean silver, you don’t need expensive commercial silver cleaning products to remove tarnish from silver. Silver must be properly stored in acid-free paper or plastic because exposure to the air causes silver to tarnish. Tarnish that is not removed can pit and damage your silver, but can be removed from silver using common household items from your pantry.
To clean silver, you will need:
- Baking soda
- A soft toothbrush
- Aluminum foil
- A pan
- A soft, clean cloth
- Mild detergent
Make a paste with baking soda and water. Gently rub the silver surface with the paste using a damp soft cloth or your fingers. Rinse with clear water and dry the item.
Rub the silver surface with toothpaste using a damp cloth or your fingers. Drip a little water on the toothpaste and work it into a foamy lather to remove tarnish. Use a soft toothbrush to clean deep crevices. Rinse off the toothpaste and wash the silver with a mild detergent and water. Rinse in clear water and dry thoroughly. Toothpaste is ideal for cleaning silver jewelry with gem stones because it leaves the stones shiny and sparkling.
Place a sheet of aluminum foil in the bottom of a pan. Fill the pan with 3 inches of water. Add 1 tsp. of salt and 1 tsp. of baking soda and bring the mixture to a boil. Place the silver item in the pan, making sure it is completely covered by the mixture, and boil it for 2 to 3 minutes. Remove the item and let it cool until you can safely handle it. Rinse the item with clear water and buff it with a soft clean cloth.
Tips & Warnings:
- Use toothpaste that does not have baking soda included as an ingredient to avoid scratching the silver finish.
- Baking soda paste is abrasive and can scratch certain types of silver finishes. Use caution when cleaning your silver with baking soda.
- Do not boil delicate silver pieces with mounted gem stones.