How To Keep Copper From Tarnishing

How To Keep Copper From Tarnishing

Copper is a chemical element obtained from ores and minerals. There will be many objects present in your household made using copper. In this article, you will learn how to keep copper from tarnishing.

Most people prefer copper because it does not rust, but you might know it may tarnish and form a green patina after using it for a long time. Patinaed copper for jewelry and other ornaments will give an elegant antique look, so some people try to purchase ornaments with this look.

In comparison, some others will not want to lose the shine. If you are also wondering how to keep copper from tarnishing, by reading this article, you will be able to get a precise idea. As copper also conducts electricity, there will be copper wires in almost all appliances you use at home.

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Sometimes the door knobs, sink, tabletop, etc., are made of copper to prevent rusting. Although copper does not rust, it will tarnish after some time; hence here are some tips that you can use to prevent the tarnishing of copper, and a few of them will be present in this article.

If you go to the market, you may come across lots of products that will help to clean copper objects and will help to retain their shine. By knowing how to keep copper from tarnishing, you can use the products available at home to clean copper. So, you don’t have to spend on chemical cleaners.

Copper is an excellent choice that many people will love due to its elegant color. Due to oxidation, you might notice that shine will fade, and a green patina will form. However, some people like the antique feel of the copper object when it starts tarnishing.

On the other hand, some others will try to retain the shine. If you are also looking for hacks that you can use to prevent tarnish of copper, then continue reading the article.

What Are The Reasons For Copper Tarnishing?

Before discussing about keeping copper from tarnishing, let’s look at some reasons why tarnishing occurs. Some people believe that copper rust, but the truth is that most metals containing iron will rust, whereas copper will tarnish over time.

The copper object will tarnish due to oxidation which takes place naturally. When the copper is buzzing with airborne chemicals like oxygen, sulfur dioxide, hydrogen, or carbon dioxide, this may result in tarnishing, where you will observe the shine fading.

The oxidation process will not take overnight and turn copper ornament to green. This is a slow process that may take years. First, you will see the color of your copper ornament or jewelry will be turning brown, and then after some time, it will gradually turn green.

Many people will try to get the shine back by using a chemical coating, but in the article’s next section, you will learn an easy and cost-effective method to keep your copper object from tarnishing.

How To Keep Copper From Tarnishing

Following the procedure below, you can clean the copper and give it a shiny look.  

  • Preparing the Solution

Initially, it is necessary to prepare the cleaning solution, and the raw materials will be available at home. In case you don’t have them, you can easily find them in the nearby store.

You must mix 3 cups of pure concentrated lemon juice with salt. The quantity of salt required will be one cup. Ensure the salt gets completely dissolved in the lemon juice.

  • Rub the Solution

It is better to wear a pair of gloves to prevent the solution from touching your skin.

Now take a sponge and dip it in the solution, and then you can rub it on the copper surface where you witness tarnishing.

This solution will be sufficient for mild tarnish rubbing. In case the tarnishing is intensive, and you can make a solution by adding white vinegar. Add one cup of white vinegar to the previously prepared salt and lemon juice solution. And then, by dipping the sponge again in the new solution, you try rubbing the copper surface.

Hopefully, this will clean the surface. Even after trying this solution, there are possibilities that you will not obtain the required outcome.

Hence, you can try adding half a cup of ammonia to the second solution to improve the shine. Then you have to repeat the rubbing process.

This solution will help erase severe tarnishing and obtain an elegant luster.

  • Rinsing

During the final stage, it is mandatory to wear gloves. This will prevent your skin from touching the solution.

Moreover, it is compulsory not to touch the copper object directly with your hands as the oils in your skin may tarnish the surface.

After covering your hands using the gloves, you can clean the object one more time using the cleaning solution you prepared.

Then it would be best if you rinsed the object well.

  • Applying Lacquer

Lastly, you will need to spray lacquer and let it dry. Be very cautious not to touch the copper object with your bare hand. You can spray the lacquer on the object’s surface and place it to dry.

The drying process will take around two hours. You might also check the instruction manual to clarify how long you will have to wait until the object completely dries.

If spraying the lacquer on the whole object and placing it to dry seems difficult, then you can do it on one side first, and after drying, you can spray on the other side.

What Are The Alternative Solutions For Cleaning Tarnished Surfaces?

If you don’t have any raw material mentioned above, then you can use another alternative solution that you can prepare using a similar household item. Some of the alternative methods mentioned below will also be useful.

  • Instead of adding lemon juice, you can add vinegar and salt. To prepare the solution, mix one tablespoon of salt with one tablespoon of vinegar and stir it well until the salt dissolves.
  • You can also try preparing the cleaning solution using baking soda and salt. You must get a bowl and add one tablespoon of baking soda and salt. Now you will have to fill half of the bowl with hot water. This solution will work on copper jewelry. You can submerge the jewelry for ten minutes in the solution and then rinse and dry it.

Apart from those methods, you can also prepare the solution using ketchup and water. These are a few hacks that you can use to clean a tarnished copper surface.

We hope this article was helpful.

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