Sterling silver is blend of metals that are made from 92.5 percent silver, with the remaining 7.5 percent a blend of other metals. This silver is usually stamped with 925 to show that it is authentic. Many items are made from sterling silver, including jewelry, coins and antiques. Sterling silver tarnishes over time and loses its luster. Using baking soda and aluminum can help restore the pieces’ original look. This method will also help remove any dirt or grime from your silver piece.
Things You'll Need
Line a pot with aluminum foil. The chemistry in the foil will help reverse any tarnishing seen on the silver.
Fill the pot with water and bring it to a boil. You need only about a quart of water.
Add one tablespoon of baking soda to the water. If you are using more water, you can add a cup of baking soda for every gallon of water. The water may froth when you add the baking soda, so make sure you are using a big enough pot.
Add the silver pieces to the water and boil for about three minutes. You can repeat the process if the silver is particularly tarnished.
Remove the silver and dry with a soft cloth.
Try adding a tablespoon of salt to each quart of water. Salt is mildly abrasive and can help lift off any residue.
Alternatively, you can pour the water mix into a separate bowl and let the silver items sit in it.
References and ResourcesHandy Harman Canada: Silver
Science Is Fun: Put a Shine on It
Life Learning Today: Polishing Silver
ResourcesMetal Detecting World: Cleaning Silver Coins
A Silver Connection: Cleaning Sterling Silver Jewelry