How to Clean Brass With Lemon Juice, Vinegar & Salt

Written by mel frank
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How to Clean Brass With Lemon Juice, Vinegar & Salt
Clean brass with a homemade cleaning solution. (brass padlock image by Scrivener from

Brass is a durable metal that holds its appearance with little maintenance required on your part. To keep the brass clean and looking its best, you could either purchase expensive retail brass cleaning products from the grocery store, or you could find an inexpensive, non-toxic, homemade alternative.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Lemon, lemon juice or vinegar
  • Salt
  • Bowl
  • Spoon
  • Cleaning cloths
  • Knife (optional)

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  1. 1

    Pour enough salt into a dish to cover the entire piece of brass you wish to clean.

  2. 2

    Stir in either lemon juice or vinegar slowly, until you are left with a thick, consistent paste.

  3. 3

    Dip a cleaning rag into the paste, and wipe it onto the brass surface. Apply a thin layer of the paste to the brass, and let sit for one hour.

  4. 4

    Rinse a clean cloth with warm water, and wring out.

  5. 5

    Wipe the paste off of the brass with the damp cloth.

  6. 6

    Buff the brass with a clean, dry cloth to restore shine to the brass.

Tips and warnings

  • Alternatively, cut a lemon in half, sprinkle one half with a thick coating of salt, and rub directly onto the brass surface. Let sit for one hour, then wipe with a damp cloth and buff with a dry cloth.

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