Earlier today I cleaned some silver that was tarnishing using a simple combination of household items that reverses the tarnishing process using a chemical reaction.
- a pan or dish large enough to completely immerse the tarnished piece of silver in
- aluminum foil to cover the bottom of the pan
- enough water to fill the pan
- something to heat / boil the water in
- baking soda, about 1 cup per gallon of water
1. Line the bottom of the pan with aluminum foil. Set the silver object on top of the aluminum foil. Make sure the silver touches the aluminum.
2. Heat the water to boiling. To the hot water, add about one cup of baking soda for each gallon of water. (If you boiled less water, adjust the ratio of baking soda that you use.) The mixture will froth a bit and may spill over so it’s not a bad idea to do this over a sink.
3. Pour the hot baking soda and water mixture into the pan with aluminum foil to completely cover the silver.
Almost immediately, the tarnish will begin to disappear. If the silver is only lightly tarnished, all of the tarnish will disappear within several minutes. If the silver is badly tarnished, you may need to reheat the baking soda and water mixture, and give the silver several treatments to remove all of the tarnish.