For those of you with silver cutlery, you probably know the frustration involved in getting it all clean if its been unused for any period of time. It can be really time consuming to sit and polish each and every piece from top to bottom. Fortunately, these is an easier way. This trick uses a chemical reaction to reverse the oxidation on the silver by using aluminium foil. Aluminium has a higher affinity for sulphur than silver and so the silver sulphide tarnish is removed from the silverware and becomes aluminium sulphide on the foil. The best part is that you don’t need to do any polishing or rubbing and its a really cheap method of cleaning your silverware, silver jewellery or coins.
What You Need To Clean Your Silver Cutlery
- Glass or Ceramic Boil or Container
- Aluminium Foil – Buy Here
- 2 Tbsp Baking Soda – Buy Here
- 1 Tsp Table Salt – Buy Here
- Boiling Water
How To Clean Your Silver Cutlery
Place a sheet of aluminium foil, a single layer is fine, into the bottom of your bowl or container. The container needs to be able to handle boiling water.
Place the silverware or cutlery which you’d like to clean onto the aluminium foil. Don’t put too much in at once, add a few pieces at a time and change the aluminium foil between cleaning as the tarnish builds up on the foil and reduces its effectiveness.
Sprinkle the baking soda and salt over the silverware or cutlery.
Pour boiling water over the silverware so that all of the pieces are completely submerged. Try and pour the water over the baking soda to dissolve it, don’t just add the water in one place. You should see bubbles start appearing on the silverware.
Watch as the tarnish is removed from your cutlery and deposited onto the aluminium foil. Wait a minute or so for the cutlery to be completely cleaned and then remove it and rinse it under cold water before drying it off with a dish towel.
You may get a pungent sulphur smell if your cutlery is particularly tarnished. Don’t worry about it, it is not harmful to you or the cutlery. Just make sure that you work in a well ventilated area.
Watch The Reaction Below
As mentioned before, this trick works for any silver products, you can use it to clean mugs, tea sets, cutlery, plates, coins and jewellery.
If you’d like to read up a bit more on the science behind this cleaning trick and the chemical reaction involved, have a look at this article.
Have you tried this on any of your silverware at home? Let us know how it went for you in the comments section below. We would love to hear from you.
My name is Michael Klements and I started this blog in 2016 to share my DIY journey with you. I love fixing, renovating and building – I’m always looking for new projects and exciting DIY ideas. If you do too, grab a cup of coffee and settle in, I’m happy to have you here.