Sterling silver is a beautiful and timeless piece of jewelry. Unfortunately, sterling silver is prone to tarnishing, making it look dull and discolored over time.
If you have a sterling silver chain that has turned black, don’t worry. There are several easy ways to clean and restore its natural luster. Now you may be thinking about how to clean sterling silver chain that has turned black.
Typically, you can use a silver polishing cloth or a jewelry cleaner specifically designed to clean a sterling silver chain that has turned black. You’ll just have to rub the cloth or cleaner over the chain until all the tarnish is removed.
In this guide, we’ll provide step-by-step instructions on cleaning sterling silver chain that has turned black, so you can enjoy your beautiful jewelry for years to come.
What Causes Sterling Silver Chains to Turn Black?
There are a few potential causes of sterling silver chains turning black. Let’s discuss each one in more detail.
- Oxidation: One of the main causes of sterling silver chains turning black is oxidation. This occurs when the metal is exposed to air and moisture, which causes a chemical reaction that darkens the metal.
- Exposure to Chemicals: Another potential cause of blackening is exposure to certain chemicals, such as those found in certain types of cleaning products, perfumes, and lotions. These chemicals can react with the metal and cause it to tarnish.
- Poor Quality: Low-quality sterling silver chains can be prone to tarnishing due to their composition. Chains that are made with a lower percentage of silver are more likely to react with the environment and turn black.
- Poor Maintenance: Proper maintenance is key to keeping your sterling silver chains looking shiny and new. If you don’t clean and polish them regularly, they can become dull and darken over time.
- Body Oils and Sweat: Your body’s natural oils and sweat can also cause sterling silver chains to turn black. This is especially true if you wear them frequently and don’t take them off to clean and polish them.
Why Should You Clean Sterling Silver Chain That Has Turned Black?
If you own a sterling silver chain that has turned black, it is important to clean it. Here are a few reasons why you should clean your sterling silver chain that has turned black:
- Improve the Appearance: Sterling silver chain that has turned black can look dull and tarnished. With the right cleaning techniques and products, you can restore the shine and luster of your chain.
- Prevent Damage: Sterling silver chains that are exposed to air and humidity tend to tarnish. If left unchecked, the tarnish can corrode the chain, leading to damage and wear.
- Increase the Value: Sterling silver chains that are in good condition will fetch a higher price than those that are dull and tarnished.
- Extend Its Life: The more you take care of your chain, the longer it will last. Regular cleaning will keep your chain looking its best and help it last longer.
How To Clean Sterling Silver Chain That Has Turned Black?
Sterling silver is a popular metal for jewelry, as it is beautiful and durable. Despite its strength, sterling silver can tarnish and turn black over time, especially when exposed to moisture or chemicals. Fortunately, it can be cleaned and restored to its original luster.
Here are some tips on how to clean sterling silver chain that has turned black.
1. Using Polishing Cloth
One of the simplest ways to clean a sterling silver chain is to use a polishing cloth. These cloths are treated with a special cleaning solution and used to rub away tarnish. Ensure to use a cloth specifically designed for polishing silver, as other materials can scratch the metal.
After rubbing the cloth over the chain, the tarnish should be removed, and the silver return to its original shine.
2. Using Soap and Water
If the tarnish is more stubborn, try cleaning the chain with mild soap and water. To do this, mix a few drops of dish soap in a bowl of warm water and submerge the chain in the solution. Let the chain soak for a few minutes, and then use a soft-bristled toothbrush to scrub away the tarnish.
Lastly, rinse the chain with water and dry it with a soft cloth.
3. Commercial Cleaners
If the chain is still not looking its best, you may need to use a commercial silver cleaner. These cleaners are specially formulated to clean silver and are available at most home improvement stores. Follow the instructions on the cleaner and wear protective gloves and eyewear while using it.
4. Storing Silver
Once the chain is clean, store it in an airtight container to prevent future tarnishing. You can also use a jewelry polishing cloth to keep the chain looking new. Following the methods discussed above, you can also clean earrings that turned green.
How To Clean Sterling Silver Chain With Vinegar
Cleaning sterling silver chains with vinegar is an effective, inexpensive way to restore the luster of your jewelry. Here are some tips on how to do it:
- Start by filling a bowl with warm water and 2 tablespoons of vinegar. Stir the solution until the vinegar is fully dissolved.
- Place your sterling silver chain in the bowl and let it soak for about 30 minutes.
- After the 30 minutes are up, remove the chain from the bowl and rinse it off with cold water.
- Using a soft cloth, gently rub the chain to remove any dirt or residue that may have been left behind.
- To give the chain a shine, you can use a jewelry polishing cloth to buff the chain until it is sparkling again.
- Finally, dry your chain off completely with a soft cloth before storing it away.
Common Mistakes To Avoid When Cleaning Sterling Silver Chains
When cleaning your sterling silver chains, you should avoid a few common mistakes to ensure your jewelry is well taken care of. Consider the following tips:
- Do Not Use Harsh Chemicals: Avoid harsh chemicals such as bleach or ammonia when cleaning your sterling silver chains. These chemicals can be too harsh for the delicate metal and can cause it to tarnish more quickly than it should. Instead, opt for mild soap and warm water when cleaning your silver chains.
- Avoid Extreme Temperatures: Extreme temperatures can also cause your sterling silver chain to tarnish faster than it should. So, avoid using hot water or leaving your chain in direct sunlight for long periods of time. Instead, you can use cool or lukewarm water when cleaning your silver chain.
- Do Not Clean Too Often: Cleaning your silver chain too often can cause it to become dull and tarnished faster. Instead, you should use a polishing cloth or soft brush to dust off your silver chain every few weeks or so.
- Don’t Store in Moisture: Lastly, avoid storing your silver chain in an area with excessive moisture. Moisture can cause tarnish to your silver chain and can also cause it to weaken and break. Instead, store your silver chain in an area that is dry and free from any moisture.
Cleaning a sterling silver chain that has turned black is a fairly simple process. After reading the above guide, you may now have a good idea how to clean sterling silver chain that has turned black.
In general, all you need is a few basic tools and a bit of patience. With the right technique and the right materials, you can have your chain looking as good as new in no time. Cleaning your chain regularly is the best way to ensure it stays looking its best for years to come.