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How to Clean Antiques

Antiques are pieces of history that tell a story of the past. Coins, jewelry, furniture and textiles are popular antiques sought for collections. Learn to clean antiques to ensure their appearance and value.


    • 1

      Decide if your antique should be cleaned. Some antiques lose value if cleaned and are better left as they are. Antique coins should be left in original condition to maintain value.

    • 2

      Take antique clocks to a specialist to clean and lubricate. The intricate parts of antique clocks present challenges to the novice cleaner. A clock specialist has the necessary tools for proper cleaning.

    • 3

      Consult a textile expert before cleaning antique cloth materials like quilts or dolls. The age and condition of the cloth determines how it should be cleaned. Washing is not recommended, but delicate spot cleaning with a mild soap and water is usually okay. If the textile is dusty, place a mesh screen over the cloth and gently use the attachment from your vacuum to remove dust.

    • 4

      Use warm soapy water to clean antique jewelry and ceramics. A soft-bristled toothbrush should be used to clean delicate jewelry. A cloth is recommended for gently washing away debris from antique ceramic pieces.

    • 5

      Polish brass antiques with a natural mixture of vinegar, salt and flour. Allow to sit for a minute and buff with a soft cloth for a shiny finish.

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