How To Clean China | Polishing and Coffee Stain Removal Tips
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Return your beautiful antique china to its rightful place of honor with these polishing and coffee stain removal tips.
HOW TO CLEAN CHINA | POLISHING AND COFFEE STAIN REMOVAL TIPS
HOW TO SHINE AND CLEAN CHINA
To clean china cups and plates, use a mixture of lemon juice and salt. Just rub it on with a damp cloth and rinse. Wash china in water that’s warm, not hot. Water that is too hot can lead to crazing—small lines and cracks in the glaze.
If your china is already crazed, don’t use it to serve food. Butter, fruit, cheese and cream can cause staining along the crack lines.
If you have dishwasher-safe china, stagger plates of different sizes when loading it into the dishwasher. That way their edges won’t touch, and you’ll avoid chipping and scratches.
HOW TO REMOVE BROWN STAINS FROM CHINA
To remove stubborn brown stains on old china, rub on a solution of equal parts vinegar and salt, then rinse.
HOW TO REMOVE COFFEE STAINS AND TEA STAINS FROM CHINA
Wash your china cups, saucers, and teapots as soon after using them as you can. If there is a tiny crack in the glaze, coffee, or tea left there will leave a stain on the china.
To remove coffee or tea stains from a cup, wet the cup with vinegar. Then dampen a rag with water, dip it in baking soda or salt and swab out the stain.
Another treatment to remove tea or coffee stains on china is to apply 20% hydrogen peroxide, wash and rinse. (Regular household hydrogen peroxide is 3% strength. The 20% solution — available at pharmacies — acts as a bleaching agent.)
HOW TO CLEAN GOLD-RIMMED CHINA PLATES AND CUPS
To clean gold-rimmed plates and cups, first scrape them with a rubber scraper and then wash with mild dishwashing liquid. Never use an abrasive cleaner. If the mild dishwashing liquid isn’t enough to remove food from the gold rim, try rubbing the rim with a paste of baking soda and water applied with a soft cloth.
HOW TO REMOVE METAL MARKS FROM CHINA
Never wash china in an aluminum pan or allow it to come in contact with aluminum in the dishwasher. Aluminum rubbing against china can create gray, pencil thin lines that are often impossible to get out.
If a metal utensil does leave a mark on your china, gently rub the dish with a mild scouring powder or plastic scouring pad. Be careful to avoid rubbing off any decorative trim.
Do you have any tips for china polishing, cleaning, or coffee stain removal?
This post was first published in 2011 and has been updated.