How To Clean Pewter

Use mild soap and water for cleaning pewter

mythical dragon wine gobltes made of pewterCleaning pewter is one of the easiest things around the house to clean. Unlike silver, there is not a lot of polishing and buffing and extensive cleaning to do.  To clean pewter, simply use some warm soapy water to clean, rinse thoroughly and dry with a soft cloth.  If you have an eating or drinking utensil made from pewter you will want to make sure you clean it after every use since leaving food or drink substances in contact with your pewter piece could cause pitting.

Sometimes cleaning the intricate pewter designs found on some pewter goblets or pewter tankards may seem daunting.  But no need to stress over it.  If you need to get into the cracks and crevices of such design work, you could try a paste made from 1 teaspoon salt dissolved in a cup of vinegar and then add flour to make a paste.  Spread the paste on the pewter piece and rub to clean.  If you are trying to clean an intricate design, use a very soft bristle toothbrush to gently get into the design.  Rinse thoroughly and dry with a soft cloth.


Do you want to remove the patina?

pewter teapot witht patinaRemoving the patina is a matter of personal choice.  Some people love the patina that comes with age and some would prefer to always keep their pewter color bright and shiny and new looking.  Some feel that the patina adds value to the pewter piece.  If you want to remove the patina, try the solution above, or, some people swear by cabbage leaves.  Just pull a few leafs off of the head of cabbage, wet them and use them as a scrubber.  Must be some type of chemical in cabbage that will rid your pewter of the oxidation.

So if you have been thinking about buying some cool pewter wine glasses, but you were afraid of the cleaning and upkeep involved, don't worry!  Taking care of pewter is a simple thing to do.  And with the modern techniques of no longer using lead to make pewter, you can feel assured that the pewter you are using to drink your wine out of is completely safe!  Even safer than the lead crystal wine glasses.

No matter if you want to keep the patina or remove it, never use harsh chemicals or any type of abrasive on your pewter wine glasses or goblets, or any pewter piece.  These can all harm your pewter by scratching it.  Pewter is made mostly from tin, and tin is a soft metal which will scratch easily.  Also, do not put your pewter in the dishwasher, not only because of the harshness of the soap, but also the heat from the dishwasher can harm the finish on your pewter. 

The dishwasher is not hot enough to melt your pewter, but you will want to shield your pewter from high heat, as the melting point for pewter is only 450.  I am sure you won't have any reason to put your pewter in an oven that hot, but just sayin!

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