I had a request from my cousin to show a tutorial on how to clean silver.
The request came a few weeks ago, and I’ve been putting it off because 
1. I don’t have very much silver to clean and 
2. I really don’t like cleaning

but

cleaning posts on this blog get astronomical reception, so I guess I’d better bite the bullet.

Perhaps you’ve heard of the baking soda and tin foil method of cleaning silver?

I can verify that it really does work!

My dirty stuff consists of my wedding cake knife and server, silver teacups that my girls received when they were born and my Grandmother’s tea set.


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Oh and a bracelet my Dad received from his high school sweetheart.
Lots of little grooves in there for the tarnish to settle in.

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You can do this in your kitchen sink if you like, but I didn’t have that much to clean, so I just lined a large pot with tinfoil.


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Add in 1 cup baking soda,

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and the items themselves, (some people add 1tsp of salt, but mine worked without it)

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Then pour boiling hot water over top.

The blur in the photos is the water moving – it bubbled like crazy at first and then slowed.

Look at how filthy the water is already?!

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Let it sit and bubble away for a half hour.

That black gunk below came out of the groove in my knife handle.
Disgusting, and yet so gratifying to watch.

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After a half hour, remove and rinse with water.

Look – every little nook and cranny was cleaned!

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I think my cake server needs one more round, but overall the results are pretty stunning.

Minimal effort with exceptional results – you can’t say that about Silvo.

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Why this works:


When silver tarnishes, it combines with sulfur and forms silver sulfide (Ag2S). Silver sulfide is black. When a thin coating of silver sulfide forms on the surface of silver, it darkens the silver. The silver can be returned to its former luster by removing the silver sulfide coating from the surface.
“There are two ways to remove the coating of silver sulfide. One way is to remove the silver sulfide from the surface using a polish, and rubbing the tarnish off to produce a luster. However, this method also removes some of the silver in the process. The other method is to reverse the chemical reaction and reduce silver sulfide back into silver. This method leaves the silver intact…”

 

 
Which reminds me – this method works, but it doesn’t smell the best.  Some of that sulfur smell releases during the cleaning.
 
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This one’s for you Norma!




Have a great one!

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