How to Clean Copper

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If you have copper pots and pans, jewellery, or decorative ornaments around your home that are discoloured, chances are they require cleaning with a copper cleaning product that will remove the tarnishes from them. The only issue, like John Anderson, an author at hubpages.com, points out, is that store-bought copper cleaning products are usually filled with harmful chemicals, like formaldehyde, which you don’t want to come into contact with, especially if you want to clean a copper saucepan. You want a food safe cleaning product for that. Luckily, John has several tips for removing unsightly tarnishes from all your copperware which will leave your materials looking like new while keeping you safe. His tips will also work well for cleaning silver, gold, or brass, so these home cleaning remedies are multipurpose as well.

As with silverware, copper tarnishes through oxidization and looks unappealing after a while. While on silver, the tarnish will look black, however, on copper, it results in a bluish-green colour that is much more noticeable. If you are looking for a cleaner for copper, John Anderson’s cleaning methods extend from using salt and vinegar to ketchup, and each copper cleaner works well for a particular level of tarnish. If you have an item that doesn’t have a lot of tarnishing, cleaning it with a mixture of vinegar and salt should be enough to remove the discolouring. The vinegar's acidic nature helps to break down the tarnish while the salt is an abrasive material that contributes to removing it. A mixture of baking soda and vinegar or lemon juice and baking soda is also a reasonable way of cleaning copper, because of the foaming chemical reaction between the acid and baking soda. The foam helps wipe away the tarnished appearance, making cleaning copper and your other metallic materials an easy and natural process. The fact that you are using natural cleaning products means that they can be used on metal items that you would cook or eat with, and they are also very affordable. You will undoubtedly have the components for cleaning copper in your pantry already.

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