What if I clean as follows...?

Good day, friends. I’d like to ask specific questions on cleaning solid silver flatware.

On the matter of cleaning, am I causing any damage if I use a clean dry soft cotton rag to wipe over the surfaces? Can that result in a buffing action if I apply some force, taking off silver?

What if I use a solvent like thinners (acetone)? Can that cause damage at all, or be ineffective to clean tarnish?

I ask these questions because I am afraid of unduly causing wear to the silver through cleaning. Some of my spoons were made as early as 1795 and already show wear. Some refer to that as “honest wear”. But I don’t want to be the one contributing to that!

How regularly must one combat tarnish buildup? Why not leave the flatware to build up tarnish and at year’s end do the cleaning? Is it bad practice to allow tarnish to accumulate? I don’t relish using any abrasives at all.

I keep my flatware in a wooden box between layers of cotton cloth. The box was painted outside and inside. Thank you for all and any answers to my concerns.

Hello Janrudolph,

You won’t cause any damage if you wiping your silver with a clean cotton towel, just make sure there’s no dust on the piece(s).

Acetone won’t harm silver. Why don’t you check-out my Silver Care Guide for all your silver care needs including what polishes to stay away from and proper storage: http://www.hermansilver.com/care.htm

Let me know if you have any questions after reading through the Guide.



Jeff, thank you, you can be sure I’ll check it out. Your advice is much appreciated.