Sometimes we find a pile of coins in a forgotten drawer. Upon review, we find that they have probably not been around for many years. That makes us think that maybe they have important economic value and we want to sell them to the highest bidder. And when we want to sell something, we want to present it in the best possible conditions in order to get the best price. However, when it comes to coins, especially old or silver coins, poor cleaning can ruin the coin and cause it to lose all of its value. Over time, coins acquire a protective coating called patina, which can be mistaken for rust and make them look ugly and worthless. However, this patina is the most important element of the coin when it comes to selling because it gives it its authenticity and what potential buyers and collectors value most. Preserving the patina is most important for cleaning your home.
Now, if you are not interested in selling the coins and cleaning them thoroughly to make them look new and display in a collection, or to use them in case they are still valid, we have some cleaning procedures for you for coins. It is important to know if your coins are copper, bronze, silver or roman because if they are the last two types they will need a different cleaning method.
If your coins are made of copper, bronze, or any other non-silver material that is polluted with dust, mud, mud, etc., you will need:
- Clean gloves
- mild soap, baby soap type
- normal water
- distilled water
- a container for the coins and soapy water
- a plastic container
- soft bristle brush, preferably already used
- clean dry cloth
- Put one part soap to three parts water in a container.
- Put the coins in the container and let the coins soak for an hour.
- Put on your gloves to clean.
- Gently rub the coins with the brush to remove dirt.
- Transfer them to the container with distilled water to remove excess soap and prevent them from drying out with water stains.
- When you’re done, place them on the clean, dry cloth and gently rub dry.
If your coins are silver or roman and full of rust you will need:
- Clean gloves
- White wine vinegar
- distilled water
- sweet almond oil
- a container for vinegar
- a plastic container for water
- a cloth to rub
- a clean, dry cloth
- Put the vinegar in a container.
- Insert one of the coins for five minutes. If you find no damage, then soak all the others and let them sit in the vinegar for fifteen minutes.
- Then put the coins in the distilled water and rinse off the vinegar and anything that came from the coins.
- Dry them with the clean, dry cloth.
- Rub them with the almond oil with the grating cloth to give them shine and a protective layer.
- Never wash the coins with abrasive or corrosive liquids, even if you do not think of selling them, as this will destroy the surface of the coins and make them rust prone, which would ruin the coins anyway and make cleaning or preservation work useless.
- Toothpaste can be used to wash the coins and then rinse them with water. This only works on newer coins that are soiled with dust or mud, and should NOT be used with silver or Roman coins.
- It is preferable to try these and other coin cleaning methods with coins of lesser value to ensure they do not damage the surface of the coin.
- If you are unsure of the value of your coins, take them to a coin specialist before cleaning and try not to touch them with your hands, as the fatty acids in human skin are the patina’s worst enemies. Use a parchment type of paper or cardboard envelopes to transfer to the specialist; For this reason, it is also important to wear gloves when cleaning.