Sunday, December 30, 2018

How to Clean Silver & Other Metals

An unexpected product that cleaned our silver
like nothing ever has!
For the past thirty-five years I've cleaned our silver using an electrolytic cleaning plate. I bought the plate in 1980's. It's a common and popular way to clean silver.

An electrolytic cleaning plate works with hot water and a water softener, Calgon. I've never used another water softener with it, only Calgon.

I wanted to clean the silver today and was out of Calgon, so thanks to google I tried baking soda and Borax with the cleaning plate. Neither worked very well. 

My husband, the car cleaning fanatic saw me struggle trying to clean the silver and jumped in and said, "I have a product that will clean that". When he demonstrated it, I was shocked at how amazing it worked!

Get this, he used Mothers Mag and Aluminum Polish for All Metals. He uses it to clean many items, including the rims on the car wheels. He swears by it.

The best way to explain this product is to show you via the photos featured below:

Our Silver Tea Set was Severely Tarnished
(The photo is blurry because it's cropped from a larger photo)

Unfortunately I hadn't cleaned our silver tea set all year. By the time the holidays rolled around, the tea set was a mess. As mentioned above, I used the electrolytic cleaning plate but it didn't work well because I was out of water softener. However, the electrolytic cleaning plate has NEVER cleaned the silver like this.

Here's Our Tea Set after Hubby Used 
Mother's Mag and Aluminum Polish on it!

This is not an exaggeration, our set has never looked this clean! It looks almost new now. Hubby didn't just do this quickly though, he was thorough. Check out the photos below for the steps to follow.
He Used a Toothbrush to Clean the Pieces
Where Intricate Areas Need Detailed Attention

I had already attempted to clean the above piece using the electrolytic cleaning plate, but it just didn't come clean without Calgon. So again, hubby used Mother's Mag and Aluminum Polish on it. He detailed it using a toothbrush.

Here's the finished result! 

I'm shocked at how amazing the Mag and Aluminum Polish works! Our silver hasn't looked this clean for years.

Here's a Close-up of our Polish
Step by Step How-to Instructions:
  1. Apply polish on the surface with a microfiber cloth
  2. For detailed hard to clean areas use a toothbrush
  3. With the toothbrush work the polish into all the crevices and tight spots
  4. You can put a cloth over the toothbrush to help get into the tight spots
  5. Let it dry for three or four minutes
  6. Then remove the polish with a microfiber cloth, keep using multiple cloths if they get too dirty
  7. Repeat until the product is cleaned
  8. When done, give it a final polish with the microfiber cloth
  9. The final step is to clean the silver with a little bit of dish soap and water. Give it a quick wipe down, then dry it. You don't need to submerge the pieces in water. Just dip the cloth in water, wipe the silver piece, then dry it thoroughly.
Note, my husband cleaned our silver tea set and five other pieces in just over two hours.

If I had to choose between an Electrolytic Cleaning Plate and the Mother's Mag and Aluminum Polish, it's the Mag and Aluminum Polish all the way!

Note: The author may receive a commission from purchases made using links found in this article. “As an Amazon Associate, Ebay (EPN) and/or Esty (Awin) Affiliate, I (we) earn from qualifying purchases.”


  1. Wow, Barbara, the shine on your tea set says it all. I will definitely have to check out Mother's Mag and Aluminum Polish. I have an antique tea set handed down from my great-grandmother (through my grandmother, mother and now to me). It has been stored in a box for a long time and when I recently moved I repacked it and saw how tarnished it was. So I see this polish in my future. :)

    1. Pat, it's more manual labor than the electrolytic plate, but the results are far superior. My hubby is more patient with the manual labor of this kind of project and his hands are stronger so he did a great job compared to what I would have done lol

  2. Wow, Barbara, the before and after pictures say it all! Your formerly tarnished silver just gleams!

    1. Margaret, and the photos don't do it justice! It looks brand new. Hubby has another item on his to do list from now on lol

  3. Barbara, I remember those plates I think my mother had one. I don't remember her's working that good.

    1. Brenda, yep, the plate doesn't work nearly as well as this product did!

  4. Wow, that is amazing! You tea service is beautiful Barbara. I rarely use silver serving pieces anymore simply because I hate the polishing, but I sure love the look of a silver laden table. I'll have to try the Mother's Mag and Aluminum polish. Kinda funny that it comes from the automotive section.

    1. Cynthia, my husband uses it to clean the rims on the wheels of the car, lol, go figure. I keep checking the silver because I still can't believe how well it worked!

  5. I'm for anything that gets the job done! This sounds like a winner. I don't have a lot of silver, but my mother sure does and she hates cleaning it when the results are less than spectacular. So I will pass along this handy cleaner and she will be just as amazed as I am. Thanks Barbara!

    1. I used the Electrolytic Plate cause it was less labor intensive, but my husband handling the labor side of using the Mothers cream was a far superior result. It's a bit of work using the cream, but wow, what a difference.

  6. I haven't used nor cleaned my silver items in years. But we may need to clean some in order to sell it. You can be sure that when that day comes, we will try using Mother's Mag and Aluminum polish.

    1. Barbara, I keep peeking in on my silver to see if it's still shiny lol, and of course it is. Am stilled shocked at how well it worked.


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