Brass is an alloy of zinc and copper and tends to oxidize very quickly. Unpolished brass looks dull and shabby and does not bring out its real beauty. Cleaning brass can also be problematic as it requires a lot of elbow grease. Today, there are many commercial brass cleaning solution products available in the market but if you are looking for some home remedies and easy ways to clean brass without Brasso, then do check out the options given below.
1. Hot soapy water
The easiest way to clean brass is with hot soapy water. Soak the object in warm soapy water and scrub gently using a sponge. This method will easily take care of lightly soiled brass items. Never use harsh steel wool scrubs on delicate brass items as it will remove the brass layer.
In order to clean brass with vinegar, use the following homemade brass cleaner dip recipe:
- 1 tbsp salt plus 1 tbsp flour
- Stir in 1 tbsp of white vinegar into the above and mix well.
Apply the brass cleaner dip all over the brass object and rub gently. Wipe or rinse it clean. Repeat every few weeks to keep your brass objects sparkling. You can also soak the brass items in a bath made using one part vinegar to two parts hot water.
3. Ketchup or Tabasco sauce
This is an effective homemade brass cleaning polish. Slather on the ketchup or Tabasco sauce all over the brass object and let it sit overnight. Rinse it clean the next morning and wipe dry completely.
4. Clean brass with baking soda
A great household recipe for cleaning brass is using a mixture of 4 parts of baking soda and one quart hot water. Submerge the brass items completely in this bath for a few hours. Rinse clean and wipe dry for an amazing shine!
Ammonia is also a good cleaning solution for brass. However, make sure you treat a small area of the brass item first to ensure that it is not damaged or corroded by the ammonia. Mix one part of ammonia with 2 parts hot water and completely submerge the item in the solution. After a few hours, or overnight, rinse it clean and wipe the object dry completely.
6. Lemon juice
Rub a cut up lemon on the brass items and let the juice work its magic for a few hours. Then rinse the object with a weak solution of ammonia to shine it. You can also make a paste with lemon juice and baking soda and apply it all over the item you wish to polish. Rinse clean and wipe dry after a few hours.
7. How to clean brass with Coke
Coca Cola and Pepsi etc contain acid that can remove tarnish and oxide layers from brass and copper objects. Submerge the brass plate completely in the coke and let it remain for a few hours. Rinse off with warm water and wipe it dry. This is an easy way to clean copper and brass items.
For the last few dark spots left on brass objects after cleaning, use some toothpaste all over the spots. Rub the paste gently and wipe the object clean. The spots will lighten considerably.
9. Isopropyl/rubbing alcohol
Apply some rubbing alcohol all over the tarnished items. Gently rub the object clean. Use a sponge to remove the darker stains. Finally, rinse clean with water and dry the plate/object completely.
10. Olive oil
Apply a thin layer of olive oil all over the brass plate after cleaning and wipe it off with a rag. This will make the object shine and keep it clean longer between polishing. You can also use linseed oil in place of olive oil.
11. Brass cleaning products
Brasso and Noxon are popular commercial metal cleaners available in the market and they all do a fine job of cleaning brass items. However, some of them tend to leave a fine residue on the items. You can alternatively go in for NeverDull brass cleaning polish that will not leave any residue.
As you can see, there are many ways to clean brass. Try these 11 methods to keep your brass objects sparkling.