Antique lighting fixtures give your home history and provide a unique appearance you just can't get with new, store-bought fixtures. However, it is important that you know how to clean for them and maintain them properly. Here are tips for cleaning antique fixtures made of different types of materials.

Antique Brass

The first type of lighting fixture you might need to clean is an antique brass lighting fixture. With brass, it is a good idea to start with a simple feather dusting to see just how much dirt has built up on it. You can either use a feather duster or go over it lightly with a soft cloth, making sure it isn't scratchy. Microfiber cloths are safe to use for most cleaning projects. After you have removed the dust, use just soap and water with your cloth to wash the lighting fixture. With brass, it is also okay to remove stains with vinegar and flour. Combine these ingredients together to make a paste, then remove stains with them. You should never clean solid brass lighting fixtures with anything abrasive, including steel wool or scrubbing sponges.

Antique Bronze

Another type of material that your antique lighting fixtures might be made from is bronze. Bronze is a beautiful material, providing you with lovely lamps for your home. Unfortunately, bronze tends to darken over time, changing to different shades of brown or green. The trick here is to clean the bronze and improve its appearance without taking away from the natural aging spots you want to see on antique lighting fixtures. If you want it to reflect its age, you should stick to dusting bronze only. However, if you want to really improve its appearance while also cleaning it, you can use mild soap and a soft sponge. As with other lighting fixtures made of metal, you don't want to use anything abrasive. Also consider using some wax polish after cleaning it to reduce buildup in the future.

Antique Pewter

Pewter is one of the metals where you likely want to keep the appearance of the aging process, as it sets off a dull gray colour. Start by dusting the pewter in the same way you dust other metal lighting fixtures. If you still want to clean it a little further, use oil to clean the surface and polish it, such as olive oil. This won't affect the natural oxidation process but gets it clean. The oil acts as a protectant for the metal so you won't notice rapid oxidization in the future. If you want to reduce the speed at which it dulls and gets the oxidization appearance. 

For more information, contact a cleaning service in your area.