Antique brass objects and hardware are very desirable to decorate the house. But over time they may collect so much dirt and tarnish that they might no longer be recognizable as brass. Thus, it is important to restore and clean such antiquities very carefully.
Usually, the brass gets tarnished mainly due to oxidization of the metal because of being exposed to air for elongated periods of time. The grease on the surface of brass can also accumulate because of constant use. One should not use abrasive chemicals and acids or any harsh materials to clean such brass metals. Ammonia-based substances should be avoided when it comes to cleaning such brass and care should be taken that the brass is not soaked in any kind of caustic solution. Harmful chemicals or caustic solutions can destroy the engraving works and you should not use such chemicals on the brass metals. In this case, you can some solutions which will remove stains and moisture from your brass antique pieces and you can also hire professionals to restore them successfully.
There Are Many Different Substances One Can Use To Clean Antique Brass:
#1. Water and soap: This is naturally the most common pairing to clean almost any substance. Though in this case, it is compulsory that the water must be pretty hot, so one must be careful and wear gloves. A soft cloth should be used to clean. No steel wool or hard substances should be used for cleaning, they will damage the brass.
#2. Ketchup: The ingredients of ketchup consist of vinegar and slightly acidic tomato puree which will clean the dirt and stains from brass antique. One should cover their desired object in ketchup and let it soak in the dirt, and they might even want to rub the ketchup in parts of extreme dirt collection. The ketchup then should be removed using warm water and a soft cloth.
#3. Yogurt: This is an excellent cleaning agent and an expert when it comes to removing grease from any substance. One just needs to coat the object in yogurt and wait for a while for it to do its magic. Then warm water and wool should be used to remove the yogurt off from the object.
#4. Lemon juice: The acidic nature because of the low pH of Lemon juice makes it a good cleaning agent. The object with antique brass can be rubbed softly with lemon juice and a soft cloth to remove the dirt and grease. But one should take care that the juice is rinsed off with warm water as soon as the cleaning is over because lemon juice can corrode and damage the brass.
Tips To Maintain The Antique Brass Pieces:
Maintaining the antique brass after cleaning is very important. One must make sure that they don’t keep cleaning the object continuously. This might lead to the copper to leach out and forming green copper oxide when in contact with the air. This is an absolutely undesirable outcome, and you must clean such antique brass occasionally. To avoid grease and dirt, one might choose to lacquer it, but this might damage the look of the antique brass. So, a very slight amount of lacquer should be applied. One might even choose to cover the object with a thin layer of wax, and they can remove the wax layers after few days. But the cleaning and maintaining the antique brass is a scientific process and you need to use proper solutions to maintain such antique pieces. In this regard, it is better to rely on trained professionals.
One last thing to keep in mind is that, if the object with antique brass is kept as a collectible for the purpose of selling it, then one must be careful of not removing the brass finish. If the finish is removed, the object becomes undesirable to collectors.