Silver plating involves coating another metal, such as copper, with a thin layer of silver. This gives the illusion that the item is solid silver. Cleaning any silver plated item, no matter what metal is beneath the silver, requires a gentler touch than cleaning a solid piece of silver. In some cases, the plating may be rubbed off if you scrub it too hard. This will expose the metal underneath and diminish the value and beauty of the silver plated item.
- Skill level:
Things you need
- Dishwashing liquid
- Denatured alcohol
- Rubber gloves
Fill your kitchen sink with hot water and add dishwashing liquid. Place the silver plated copper items in the sink and wash them. If an item won't fit, use a sponge dipped in the soapy water to clean it.
Rinse off the silver plated copper items in warm water and place them on a towel.
Mix 3 tbsp whiting with 1 tbsp denatured alcohol in a bowl, as suggested by the University of Georgia Extension. Put on rubber gloves to protect your hands.
Dampen a soft cloth in the cleaning mixture. Rub it over the silver plated copper item, using straight up-and-down strokes.
Immerse the item again in the soapy water to remove the cleaning solution. Rinse the silver plated copper with warm water and dry immediately with a clean cloth or towel.
Tips and warnings
- Whiting powder and denatured alcohol can be found at some home improvement stores.
- Denatured alcohol is flammable. Do not use this around any flame source.
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