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How to Clean Silver With Household Items

Silver decor can be easily cleaned and maintained with household items.
silver menorah image by Paul Moore from Fotolia.com

Things You'll Need:

  • Feather duster
  • Soft cleaning cloths
  • Baking soda
  • Bowl
  • Mild dishwashing detergent
  • 1 cup distilled water
  • White vinegar


Store unused, clean silver in plastic freezer bags to protect them from tarnish.

Clean your silver regularly, even if its not being used, to keep it in tip-top shape and prevent tarnish from developing.


  • Never use abrasive cleansers or scrubbers to remove tarnish. They will scratch the surface of your silver.

Silver decor, such as candlestick holders and picture frames, add shine and classic appeal to your home. Discoloration and tarnish develop as silver is exposed to natural oils from the skin -- and even air itself. When left unattended, these things can build up on your silver and create a larger job for you to tackle. Rather than spending money on commercial silver cleaners, you can effectively clean your silver using household items and supplies found readily in the home.

Remove dirt from silver with a soft feather duster.
duster image by Elena kouptsova-vasic from Fotolia.com

Dust the surface of your silver with a feather duster. Removing surface dirt and debris allows you to focus on stains and tarnish.

Sprinkle some baking soda over a damp wash cloth. Scrub the stained and tarnished silver. Baking soda is a very mild abrasive that helps remove tarnish and stains without scratching your silver.

If the tarnish remains, soak it in a cup of distilled water with a few drops of mild dish detergent. Remove your silver from the dish detergent. Rinse the silver by wiping it with a damp cloth.

If the item is too big to soak, soak a clean cloth in the solution. Lay it over the tarnish for 10 minutes before scrubbing off the grime.

Pour white vinegar onto another clean cloth; and rub the vinegar into your silver. Buff the surface with a dry cloth to work the vinegar into the silver until it shines.

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