how to clean brass and shine like new with simple household products

    Brass is a classic metal that gives any home a timeless, elegant look. Over time, however, brass can become dull, tarnished, and discolored. But the great news is there are various affordable and uncomplicated methods to effectively restore the appearance of brass and prevent tarnishing and oxidation. This article will delve into the most effective approaches to cleaning brass. So without further ado, let’s begin.

    What is Brass?

    what is brass and how is it utilized
    Brass may also contain trace amounts of other elements such as lead, iron, aluminum, silicon, and manganese.

    A combination of copper and zinc creates brass, which is a metal alloy. It has a warm, golden color and is often used to make decorative items such as lamps, doorknobs, and hardware for furniture. Brass is also famous for musical instruments, jewelry, and coins.

    People have been using brass in homes and businesses for ages because it is both beautiful and tough. Unfortunately, due to exposure to oxygen and moisture, brass can quickly tarnish and oxidize over time. That can make brass look dull and discolored and cause pitting and corrosion.

    Tips for Cleaning and Polishing Brass

    tips for cleaning and polishing brass
    Polishing makes a product shine while cleaning removes debris.

    Before you clean brass, you need to know a few tips and tricks to ensure you get the best results. Here are some pointers to remember when cleaning and polishing brass:

    • Always use a soft, non-abrasive cloth when cleaning brass.
    • Never use harsh chemicals or abrasive materials like steel wool to clean brass.
    • To clean the brass, create a gentle cleaning solution by blending warm water and mild soap.
    • Polish brass with a soft cloth, buffing in small circles to remove tarnish.
    • After cleaning and polishing, apply a sealant, such as a brass polish or lacquer.
    • Avoid using ammonia or other harsh chemicals to clean brass.

    The Best Way to Clean and Shine Brass

    the best way to clean and shine brass
    At times, the charm of an antique brass item lies in its tarnished appearance.

    A mild soap and warm water solution is the best way to clean and shine brass. That will help remove dirt and grime from the brass surface, leaving it shiny and new. If the tarnish is on the brass, use a soft cloth to buff it away.

    Once you’ve cleaned the brass surface, you can apply a sealant to help protect it from tarnish and oxidation. An excellent adhesive to use is a brass polish or lacquer, which will help prevent tarnish from developing in the future.

    Home Remedies for Cleaning Brass

    what are home remedies for cleaning brass
    Note that how you clean your brass depends on whether it is lacquered or not.

    In addition to mild soap and warm water solution, you can use some home remedies to clean brass. Here are some of the most popular home remedies for cleaning brass:


    A tomato-based product can clean brass because tomatoes contain an acid that removes tarnish.

    1. Apply a small layer to the brass objects and leave them alone for an hour or two.
    2. Use warm water to remove the film, then look at the beauty.

    Lemon and salt polish

    The citric acid in lemon juice reacts with the tarnish to lift it away from the surface.

    1. Cut a lemon in half and put a teaspoon of salt on the cut side.
    2. Rub the lemon over the tarnished item, squeezing it as you go to release the lemon juice.
    3. Dry after rinsing with warm water.

    Olive Oil

    Olive oil is a great way to make things shine and can also be used to clean brass.

    1. The area needs to be covered with a thin layer of oil.
    2. Then wash with a rough cloth.

    Lemon and Baking Soda

    Lemon juice and baking soda are great natural cleaners, but when used together, they make a powerful team that easily removes brass buildup.

    1. Start by squeezing the juice from half a lemon into a bowl. Add one teaspoon of baking soda and mix.
    2. Apply some of the mixture to the brass using a clean cloth. Polish and buff away filth, reapplying the mixture as needed.
    3. With a moist rag, wipe away any remaining residue. After that, dry with a clean cloth.

    Flour, salt, and white vinegar

    To remove difficult stains, combine the abrasive strength of salt, the acidity of the vinegar, and all-purpose flour as a thickening.

    1. Mix one teaspoon of salt with 1/2 cup of vinegar in a medium-sized bowl. Stir until the salt dissolves.
    2. Add enough flour to the salt/vinegar combination to produce a paste (approximately two teaspoons).
    3. Rub the paste into your brass item and dry it for 10 minutes.
    4. Rinse the brass, wipe it clean, and dry it well with a clean cloth.

    To clean brass with toothpaste, choose plain, white toothpaste. You don’t need any gels or fancy flavors.

    1. Put a thin layer of toothpaste on the brass item you want to clean. Let it sit for a minute or two.
    2. Then use a clean cloth to shine it up. You’ll need to work more in tough spots most of the time. Feel free to put more toothpaste on spots that are especially hard to clean.
    3. When happy with the brass’s looks, rinse it with cool water and dry it with a cotton cloth.

    While these home remedies can effectively clean brass, it’s important to note that the best cleaning method depends on the item and its condition. It’s also important to consider whether the brass is lacquered or not before attempting any cleaning method. Additionally, testing any of these home remedies on a small, inconspicuous area is recommended to ensure they don’t cause any damage.

    What Causes Tarnish and Oxidation on Brass?

    what causes tarnish and oxidation on brass
    If your brass is severely tarnished, it could be worthwhile to consider purchasing an ultrasonic cleaner.

    The interaction of brass with air, moisture, and other environmental factors results in tarnish and oxidation. Brass is an alloy that is composed of copper and zinc. Over time, the copper in brass reacts with oxygen, sulfur, and other substances to form a layer of copper sulfide or other corrosion products, causing tarnish and oxidation.

    Exposure to high humidity, salts, and pollutants can accelerate the process. By keeping brass objects clean and dry, storing them in an unheated, dry environment, and covering them with a protective lacquer or wax, you can lessen the growth of tarnish and oxidation.

    How to Prevent Tarnish and Oxidation on Brass

    how to prevent tarnish and oxidation on yellow copper
    If tarnish becomes corrosion, it may require the attention of a professional metal cleaner.

    It’s essential to clean and polish the brass regularly to prevent tarnish and oxidation from occurring. Use mild soap, warm water, and a soft cloth to clean the brass surface. You can also apply a sealant, such as a brass polish or lacquer, to help protect the brass surface from tarnish and oxidation.

    In addition, it’s vital to keep brass surfaces away from moisture and oxygen. That can be done by storing brass in a dry, airtight container.


    Brass might be challenging to keep beautiful and shiny, but it doesn’t have to be. With the proper techniques and tools, you can keep your brass looking new for years. By understanding the best ways to clean and polish brass, as well as how to prevent tarnish and oxidation from occurring in the first place, you can ensure that your brass items remain beautiful and timeless. So get out there and start cleaning and polishing your brass today!