Home » Blog » Tips for Cleaning Coins – From Dirty and Dull to Clean and Shiny!

By: Rain City Maids
Feb 26, 2018

From kids to teens and young adults to senior adults; collecting coins is a common hobby that many individuals have been doing for years! Some coin collections have even been passed down from one generation to another, making it that much more valuable and special to the owner.

With the sentimental value of your coin collection, coupled with the amount of patience that went into creating it, it’s no wonder that collectors look for ways to clean and keep their coins looking bright and shiny. The great thing about this is that it’s fairly easy to do and the results are spectacular!  So without wasting any more time, here are two methods to clean both the newer coins and the older, tarnished ones.

How to Clean Dirty Coins

Newer coins are rarely tarnished or corroded; on the other hand, they do get rather dirty as they are passed from person to person. On top of that, coins that have been in circulation recently could be full of germs so they require the following method to make them clean and sanitary again. Here’s what you need to do:

  • In a plastic container or bowl, mix 1/2 - 1 cup of warm water and a teaspoon of liquid dish soap
  • Hold the coin between your thumb and index finger and rub it as you hold in under running water for about 10 seconds
  • Dip the coin in the warm, soapy solution and continue rubbing away loose dirt with your thumb and index finger
  • Use an old, soft-bristled toothbrush to brush away any hardened dirt/stains
  • Rinse the coin out thoroughly under running water
  • Air dry or pat dry with a soft towel

How to Clean Tarnished Coins

Older coins from the 19th (or perhaps 18th?) century are prone to corrosion if they are not cleaned in time. Older coins may also be dull and discolored beyond recognition which requires a little more effort to clean and rejuvenate. Well, you’ll be happy to know that it doesn’t take too much work to clean those older coins. Here’s our surefire way to clean tarnished coins:

  • In a plastic container like those for storing your leftover foods or a small child sized bucket, add 1 cup of white vinegar and soak 4-5 coins in it. The longer you leave them to soak, the better the effect of the vinegar will be. For coins that are more than 50% corroded, it’s advisable to soak them overnight
  • Take the coins out and sprinkle some baking soda over them; then use a soft-bristled toothbrush to brush them clean
  • Rinse them out thoroughly with hot water; using tongs or gloves to hold them to avoid burning your fingers
  • Place them on a soft, cotton towel and leave to air dry

After using the above methods to make your coin collection a bright and shiny one, you’ll be more proud than ever to show it off! Best of all, everyone will be pleasantly surprised and happy to see how clean and sparkling they are!

DISCLAIMER: Coins that are not cleaned properly can lose their value. Always consult a coin expert before cleaning your coins. We do not accept responsibility for damage or loss of value caused by cleaning coins.

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