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Dull and tarnished silver looks ugly and unloved. Over time, deposits accumulate, making silverware lose its shine. Most of us do not embark on this job because we think polishing silver is a laborious process.
However, nothing could be simpler and easier. If silver is cleaned regularly, then a simple wash and dry cycle in the dishwasher or by hand is sufficient. This should be followed by gentle buffing using a soft, clean towel.
Restore silver to its former glory by using items that are already in your kitchen.
Rinse the silver with soap (mild and phosphate-free detergent) and warm water to remove dirt and grease.
Line a shallow pan with aluminum foil and fill it with three inches of hot water. Mix 1tsp of baking soda and soak the silverware in it for 10 minutes. The baking soda will act on the silver and remove all the dirt, stains and grease. If the silverware is heavily tarnished, reheat the water and soak the silver for a few more minutes. Remove the silverware from the pan and rinse it under warm running water. Place the silverware on a clean towel and let them air dry.
You can also clean silverware using a commercial polishing cloth, polishing paste or commercial liquid silver dips. It is important to note that the abrasive elements and acids in these can leave marks and scratches on the surface, if used incorrectly. In case the silverware is part of a valuable heirloom set, it would be advisable to get them professionally cleaned.
• Soak silverware in water and baking soda mixture
• Silver can also be cleaned using commercial dips
• Heirloom sets need to be professionally cleaned
Source: Binu Sivan, Special to Classifieds
The writer is a freelancer