Home Remedies for Cleaning Brass-Plated Hardware

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Brass-plated hardware, like handles, doorknobs, and railings, can get tarnished over time, leaving the items looking dull and less than their best. Brass cleaning products are commercially available, but if you would rather use more natural cleaning products that are less damaging to the environment and your skin, you can use home remedies to clean brass. These are usually items you have sitting around at home, and they are inexpensive. Here's how to bring that sparkle back to your brass hardware with home remedies.

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Home Remedy Using Soap and Water

Before you try anything more potent, try this simple home remedy. Squirt some dish soap into a bowl of warm water. Dip a microfiber cloth into the water and rub the surface of the brass-plated hardware gently. Use an old toothbrush to get into any crevices that might be more tarnished than other parts. This method will get rid of general dirt and oils that might have dulled your brass, but if there is heavier tarnishing, you might want to try one of the following home remedies instead or as well.

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Home Remedy Using Ketchup

This might be a surprising home remedy, but it's super easy. Apply a thin layer of ketchup (or other tomato sauces or pastes, which work equally well) to the brass-plated item. Leave it for about an hour before washing it off with soap, water, and a soft cloth. The vinegar in the ketchup brings the shine back to brass plating.

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Home Remedy Using Vinegar and Flour

It's the vinegar in ketchup that works on tarnished brass, so you can go straight to the source and use vinegar itself. However, you'll first need to make it spreadable, especially if you're going to apply it to something that can't be dipped into a liquid, like a handle on a piece of furniture. Mix half a cup of vinegar with as much flour as necessary to make a paste. Then, leave it on for 10 minutes or so before wiping it off and washing with soap and water.

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