As versatile as this combination of zinc and copper is, brass does tend to tarnish. Whether it’s a brass musical instrument or square brass tubing used for machinery, the following methods can prove fruitful to anyone who wants to clean up their brass items.
Brass or brass plating
If your item isn’t magnetic, then chances are it’s made of brass. If the magnet sticks to a supposedly brass piece, then it’s probably brass-plated. Either way, use water and mild detergent to clean the item, avoiding any abrasive cleaner or cloth that could leave scratches on the plating.
Not all brass pieces are created equal, and each requires a different method of cleaning. Lacquered brass can be cleaned with a damp cloth. Non-lacquered brass items, on the other hand, require a little more work with the help of some everyday ingredients such as ketchup; simply squirt some on a clean cloth and rub over tarnished areas until shiny.
If the item is dusty and dirty, submerge it in a mixture of soap and mild detergent using a soft toothbrush to scrub extra dirty areas and corners. Wipe dry with a soft cleaning cloth afterwards.
Versatile home ingredients like vinegar, salt, and flour can be combined to create a brass-cleaning paste that can be rubbed into the brass and left for about 10 minutes. Rinse the object in warm water then buff until shiny and dry.