How to Clean a Brass Chandelier

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Things You'll Need

  • Rags

  • Dish soap

  • Magnet

  • Steel wool OR brass cleaner

  • Clear lacquer or paint

Brass has long been a material used for lanterns and lamps due to its long life and durability. Brass is naturally resistant to corrosion, making it low maintenance, in addition to its other benefits. Brass chandeliers can be found in many older homes and are a popular choice for new decor as well. A brass chandelier can be an excellent antique shop find. If you have a brass chandelier, it will require occasional cleaning.


Step 1

Dust the chandelier regularly with a dry cloth. This will probably keep a new chandelier from ever needing vigorous cleaning. However, if you have an older or dirty chandelier you will need to get it completely clean, then dust regularly for maintenance.

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Step 2

Use dish soap in warm water to clean a dirty chandelier. Dry it completely afterward.


Step 3

Determine whether the chandelier is solid brass or steel-plated brass if you need to remove tarnish. A magnet will stick to steel-plated brass, but not to solid brass.

Step 4

Use steel wool to remove tarnish on steel-plated brass, as it is rust. You can then have it re-plated or paint it.


Step 5

Use a brass cleaner from a hardware or home improvement store to remove tarnish from a solid brass chandelier.

Step 6

Finish with a coat of clear spray-on lacquer.


Do not use an ammonia-based cleaner on brass. It will cause tarnishing.