Metals will get stained and discolored but don’t even think about discarding them. You have products in your kitchen cabinet that will do a bang up job of cleaning your metal and make it sparkle like new. Sure, you can buy expensive cleaners to do the job, but why would you? Save your money and use these simple inexpensive products to do the job.
How to Clean and Polish Metals
You will find many commercial products for cleaning and polishing metals, but why waste your money when you have perfectly good products in your cabinet that will do the same job? In any care, check the product you intend to use and opt for the one that is environmentally safe. Once the metal is clean, rinse it in warm water and dry it with a soft cloth. Don’t try to polish lacquered metals. You will take the lacquer off.
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1. Baking soda does a good job as an all purpose metal cleaner. It has scouring power but is gentle enough not to harm metal. Try it before using harsher treatments.
2. Household ammonia works well on brass. Just rub it on and dry with a clean soft cloth. A piece of lemon dipped in salt will also do the job of scouring tarnished areas.
3. Anything acidic will clean copper. Lemon juice, vinegar and tomato juice will do the job. Rub any of these on and wipe it off. Let the liquid set on the metal awhile if it doesn’t work immediately. Or add some flour to make a paste, spread it on the area, let it set for awhile, and rub it off. Add some salt to the paste if you need extra scouring power. Or coat a lemon wedge with salt and rub until the metal is clean.
4. Pewter is not supposed to shine as brightly as silver,so don’t try to polish it too hard. A traditional treatment is to rub pewter with a cabbage leaf, or use wood ashes moistened with water. If that doesn’t work use extra fine steel wool dipped in vegetable oil.
5. Ammonia works wonderfully on silver. Or try toothpaste, non-gel works best. Be very careful not to harm the finish with harsh cleaners. You can use aluminum and baking soda. First heat water in a pan until it simmers. Remove from heat and put some crumbled up foil in the bottom of the pot. Add a couple tablespoons of baking soda to the water and the silver you want to clean. The baking soda will foam up and react to the silver. The foil will attract the tarnish. You can add more soda if needed but try not to add too much to fine plated pieces, because it removes some of the silver. Be sure to rinse the metal and wipe completely dry.
6. For stainless steel, ammonia works great. rub it on with a clean cloth and dry the metal completely. Toothpaste also works for quick cleanups.
7. To remove rust from metals, make a paste of hydrogen peroxide and cream of tartar, rub it on the rust stains in sinks and appliances. Or soak corroded pieces in vinegar until rust begins to dissolve. this works effectively on shower heads and tools.
Published in: Do-It-Yourself