Home bathroom and sanitaryPolish and clean the chrome: bring weathered chrome to shine

Polish and clean the chrome: bring weathered chrome to shine

  • Before polishing: clean
  • Different means
    • Water and detergent
    • Lemons
    • vinegar
    • bicarbonate of soda
    • ash
  • Prepare polishing
  • Polish the chrome
  • Special cleaners

Due to its properties, chromium is often used for a variety of different shiny surfaces, such as wheels, in the bathroom or for modern lamps. The element is durable and enthusiastic with the design qualities, but it can become dirty and even weather with time, ruining the coveted glare. It works chrome clean and polish quickly and effectively.

Whether you like to work on your car or have a large bathroom with chrome fittings, chrome is one of the easier-care metals in everyday life. Due to the resistance to corrosion, scratches are quite rare and if the care of the metal is not neglected, the gloss is retained over many years without tarnishing. For this reason, regular care is important so that the elegant rims can present themselves in all their splendor. A big advantage here is the unpretentiousness of the metal, which can be cleaned even with classic home remedies and then looks like new.

Before polishing: clean

Chromium is most commonly found as an alloy of other metals and offers not only the special gloss as a property, but the resistance to dirt and rust. Although it is not completely stainless, but resistant to good care, which makes the item so popular for motor vehicles. If you want to bring weathered chrome bumpers or taps back to a shine, you need to clean them first. The cleaning protects the metal from scratches caused by dirt and small particles, such as sand, and prepares it for polishing. Possible cleaning agents are:

  • Water and detergent
  • Lemons
  • vinegar
  • bicarbonate of soda
  • ash

With these cleaners, you play it safe that the rims of your car are clean and therefore no risk of possible scratches. Scratches are the biggest problem for chrome alloys because they can be deep and can hardly be repaired. In extreme cases, you could scratch the entire rim so much that it loses its elegant character, which should be avoided at all costs. For this reason, you should only use the following utensils for the care:

  • microfiber cloths
  • soft sponges without scratching surfaces
  • Toothbrushes with soft bristles for hard to reach places

Tip: Never use cleaning utensils such as steel wool or the like for chrome as these would remove the corrosion protection. It causes numerous scratches that are ugly to look at and can not be improved.

Different means

Water and detergent

Water and detergent are of course the standard when cleaning the chrome surfaces and are effective here, since they have everyone at home. A big advantage of this is that you clean the metal gently, as detergent can not cause scratches and by a careful execution really works against any form of dirt and grime. Only with particularly stubborn stains, the detergent is not clear. When cleaning, proceed as follows:

  • Mix a little detergent and warm water together
  • Dosage: 1 bucket of water and 10 drops of detergent
  • dip the sponge in the water and clean the chrome thoroughly
  • Pay close attention to places that are difficult to reach as rust could form here
  • Rinse the soap solution with clear water
  • dry

It is recommended to clean the chrome alloys weekly so that dirt and dust can not get into the material. Although chromium is extremely resistant, it can happen especially with high humidity or with prolonged exposure to dirt, which is not ideal.


Citric acid is an effective cleaning agent for metals of all kinds and also gives the chrome objects the necessary shine. Since the acid contained is not too strong, it can ideally be used to remove stubborn stains. All you need is a lemon that you cut in half, or lemon juice, which is administered through a cloth or sponge. Here it does not matter whether you use an organic lemon, because the quality of the lemon does not determine their cleaning effect, since the acid is always the same structure. The procedure described:

  • cut a lemon in half or single slices
  • remove the cores (danger of scratches)
  • Alternatively, add lemon juice on a sponge or in a cloth
  • rub the metal thoroughly
  • Let the acid work for a moment
  • Rinse off the chrome
  • dry it off

Note: Lemons work wonders on metal and also provide a fresh smell that spreads immediately in the nose.


Acetic acid has a similar effect on the metal, but is even more aggressive and removes heavy stains more effectively. The only drawback is the rather severe smell, which is reduced only at the end of the cleaning. Proceed as follows:

  • Mix acetic acid and warm water in a 1: 1 ratio in a bucket
  • dip the sponge in the bucket and then wring it out
  • rub the chrome thoroughly until it is clean
  • then rinse and dry

bicarbonate of soda

Soda is one of the oldest home remedies suitable for cleaning chrome surfaces. For this you use commercially available soda and rub it over a damp cloth into the metal. Due to the leavening agent, difficult stains can be removed more easily and the metal shines stronger afterwards. Let the soda soak for about two hours. Rinse off at the end and dry.


Ash, like soda, comes out of the fireplace. From this you can just take a portion and work it over a damp cloth. Then rinse and dry, as too much moisture is not good for chrome surfaces and can cause water stains.

Prepare polishing

Before you can polish the chrome surface, you must first check for possible rust spots and treat them. Prepare individual pieces of aluminum foil about 8 x 8 cm in size and dunk in water. The necessary ions to solve the rust, namely, come from the film and water is sufficient here as a lubricant. Now rub the pieces of rust with the foil until the rust dissolves. For rust scars, roll the film into a ball and rub it off. Now rinse with water and dry.

Tip: You do not need cola as a lubricant, although this is suggested more often. Likewise, you should not spend too much energy on this work, as the chrome could become duller.

Polish the chrome

When polishing, you just have to make sure that no dust or dirt particles are visible on the surface and everything is dried. The water acts against the polish, which is unfavorable for this process. Polishing should be done immediately after drying, as there is hardly any dirt on the metal during this time, which makes polishing a lot easier. For polishing you need:

  • microfiber cloths
  • Polish, carnauba wax or baby oil (mineral oil)

The use of a polish is necessary to achieve the unique, mirror-finished finish. It nourishes the metal with the necessary moisture from the active ingredients and thus provides the popular chrome effect that is desired. Take some time polishing, as this is the only way to get the best results and avoid streaks on the metal. Instructions for polishing:

Step 1: Take a microfibre cloth and rub all the chrome off. You should use natural pressure on the surface to remove all forms of residual moisture, detergents and rust. Alternatively, you can also use a polisher with a clean polishing pad, which must be dry.

Step 2: Spread the polish evenly on the surface. The smaller the surface, the less polish you need and the closer the gaps become. For example, with the bonnet, you should put a drop of polish every three to five inches.

Step 3: Now, in a circular motion, as in cleaning, rub the polish into the surface and use some pressure again. Only then can the agent effectively move into the chrome surface and work.

Step 4: Then use a dry, fresh cloth and rub over the surface again to remove the remnants of the polish. You can also take your time here, as this is the only way to remove the last streaks that can form on the chrome.

Tip: Polishing wadding is recommended instead of a microfibre cloth. Polishing wadding is specially designed for high-gloss polishes.

Special cleaners

Of course, there are special products for the complete cleaning process that combine the necessary cleaning and polishing agents. These work effectively and relieve you of additional work, which can be especially useful for large-scale cleaning processes. Such chrome cleaning pastes are available from manufacturers such as Dursol and Norax. These are simply applied to the surface and then polished. It's that easy.

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