Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Cleaning Silverware with Foil

 Wait!  If you need to clean your silver and you are getting ready to rub and buff with a cream or polish, you might want to try this first.  I have been using this simple process for over 30 years and it has not failed me yet.

Cleaning your holiday silverware with aluminum foil and a few ingredients.

Call me lazy, but for years I have been cleaning my silver flatware with this easy cleaning process versus using store-bought silver polish. Not only is it easy, but it works wonders on pieces with intricate detail.  

Aluminum foil
Glass baking dish, disposable aluminum foil pan, sink, or basin
2 cups boiling hot water (or more to make sure items are fully submerged)
2 Tbsp baking soda
2 Tbsp salt
1/4 cup vinegar or lemon juice (optional, but this does speed up the process)

Line the bottom of your selected container with aluminum foil.
Mix salt and baking soda together and shake on top of the foil
Slowly add the vinegar or lemon juice (this will bubble once it hits the baking soda and salt)
Slowly pour in the boiling water
Add the flatware to the water making sure it is lying flat against the aluminum foil and fully submerged. 

After a minute or two turn over your silver pieces with the tongs.

The cleaning process should only take a few minutes, but could take longer depending upon the amount of tarnish you are dealing with. Sometimes you will see the tarnish lessen before your eyes.

Remove the silver from the hot water, rinse with warm water, and dry off with a soft cloth or paper towel rubbing lightly to remove the tarnish that was not transferred to the aluminum foil.  You might want to wear gloves, to keep our hands from getting black, since the tarnish is easily transferable at this stage.

Be careful while drying, your silver pieces might still be very hot.

Use tongs at all times to prevent yourself from being scalded by the boiling water and hot metal.


You may want to do this well before guests arrive since the chemical reaction causes a slight boiled egg scent in the air.

Do not use this process on items with jewels or pearls as it may lead to damage or color changes.
This process great for cleaning silver chains and tarnished silver jewelry too. 

This batch is just chillaxing in the solution and waiting for me to give them a quick rinse and light buffing with a soft towel.