Q:

How do you clean brass?

A:

Quick Answer

To clean a solid brass object, wash it with hot soap and water using a microfiber cloth. Follow this washing up by applying a thin coat of ketchup. After approximately one hour, wash the piece again with hot soap and water, and then polish it to a shine.

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How do you clean brass?
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Full Answer

  1. Determine the type of brass

    Solid brass items withstand a more rigorous cleaning than plated or lacquered brass. Test for solid brass using a magnet. If the magnet sticks, the item is brass plated over another metal. If the item is plated or lacquered, avoid aggressive cleaning techniques or harsh chemicals.

  2. Wash with soap and water

    Fill a sink with hot, soapy water. Place the object in the water, and scrub it using a soft microfiber cloth. Use a small brush, such as a toothbrush, to clean any crevices. Rinse the piece, and allow it to dry.

  3. Apply ketchup

    If the item is solid brass, apply a tomato product such as ketchup or tomato paste. Spread a thin layer over the exposed surface. Allow the acid in the ketchup to dissolve away any tarnish for about an hour. Rinse away the ketchup with water.

  4. Wash and polish the item

    Wash the item in soapy water again, and rinse it thoroughly. Allow the piece to dry. Use a soft cloth to polish the surface to the desired shine.

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