Many metals are affected by a type of corrosion known as tarnish; some homeowners like the antique look that this gives their items, whereas others find it unattractive. If you fall into the latter category, you may be looking for ways that you can remove this tarnish without damaging the metal underneath. The only way to do this is with some specialty polishing products and these simple steps:
Step 1: Put on a pair of vinyl or nitrile gloves. These will protect your hands from the harmful chemicals that you may be working with, as well as protect the metal from the dirt and oils on your skin.
Step 2: Take the metal item and lay it onto a foam pad or a bundle of folded towels to protect it from scratches as you clean it. You can then use a soft cloth to remove any loose dust from the item’s surface. For more caked on dirt, dampen a cloth, apply a twenty-cent piece sized drop of mild soap onto it and wipe the metal clean. Rinse the item thoroughly and dry before continuing.
Step 3: Take a microfiber polishing cloth that you have applied a little of the polish to and use it to gently rub at the item. Whenever you notice the cloth discolouring from the tarnish, switch to a clean area. Once all of the tarnish has been removed, you can buff the metal with a clean polishing cloth.
It is always recommended that you use a polish that has been specifically manufactured for the type of metal that you are hoping to clean. If you do not know what type of metal it is, however, a general all-purpose polish should be fine. If you cannot find a microfiber cloth, an old t-shirt should do the trick.