How to Clean a Silver Tea Set

Whether your silver tea set is a family heirloom, or one you lucked into finding at a yard sale, it is bound to show some tarnish over time. Silver will tarnish when exposed to air. It will tarnish at a more rapid pace when exposed to damp or humid air. You can buy professional silver cleaners, but it is easier and better for the environment to use natural products to clean your silver tea set.

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Tarnished Silver Tea Set

Step 1

Fill your sink with hot water. Place a sheet of aluminum foil over the bottom of your sink.

Step 2

Whisk in 2 tablespoons of baking soda and 2 tablespoons of salt. Place the silver tea set in the sink and allow to sit for 5 minutes. It is best to clean one piece of the tea set at a time. Salt can be used in cleaning with the aluminum foil because the combination of salt, aluminum foil and water creates a chemical reaction known as ion exchange. The ion exchange causes the tarnish on the silver to be transferred to the foil.

Step 3

Remove the silver tea set and dry with a soft towel. Do not air dry, as extended exposure to water will cause the silver to tarnish.

Step 4

Inspect the silver tea set. If you still see tarnished areas, you can make a thin paste of baking soda and water. Apply the paste in a back and forth motion with a soft cloth. Rinse and dry with a towel.