How to clean Chrome surface of a faucet

Fixture to keep it sparkling clean

If you like things shiny and bright, you're probably a fan of chromium, a metal used to plate other metals, commonly known as chrome. Watch this Howcast cleaning guide in video link given below, to learn how to clean chrome. To keep your chrome nice and shiny, you will need:

  • A sink or bucket
  • A bottle of dishwashing liquid
  • Warm water
  • A clean cloth
  • A few paper towels
  • An old, soft toothbrush
  • A chrome or soft metal cleaner

Video Link:

Beside above these are few other home remedies, which you can try out to keep chrome faucets & fixtures clean & shiny for years:

Important Tips:

I. Never neglect chrome. The best way to avoid damage to chrome objects is to not allow them to get (very) dirty in the first place. The dirtier chrome gets before you deal with it, the more effort and force you’re going to have to use to clean chrome and the higher your risk of damaging it will become. The moment you start to notice a dulling of the chrome, wash it. Avoid washing chrome surface with greasy water. The grease will leave a film on your chrome surface that will get stubborn with time and will be very difficult to remove. Salt is very tough on Chrome Surface.

II. Soap and water. Sounds too good to be true, but oftentimes, if the need to clean chrome isn’t bad, this is all you need. If faucet is not yet installed or can be dismantled i.e. it is easily submersible, a sink full of water, a good dish detergent, and a soft rag (chrome scratches easily) is all you need. Make it a habit to clean the chrome finish on the handles and faucets of faucets installed on your sink, with dish detergent & water solution, while you’re working at it. For grooves and hard-to-reach places, use a soft-bristled toothbrush.

III. Soap and water didn’t quite do the trick?. You may need to move on to something a little stronger. Continue to use your soft rag, but this time use vinegar as chrome cleaner. Because vinegar (either plain white or apple cider) is slightly acidic, it works well for taking tarnish and gunk off the chrome. Just remember to use different parts of the rag as you go along so you’re always using a clean section. If you need a little extra oomph, sprinkle a little baking soda on the vinegar-dampened rag. You can try out lemon juice also, if vinegar is not available.

IV. Clean with Cola: If spots seem tougher, it works well to grab a bit of aluminium foil, crumple it up, dip it in vinegar (or Coca-Cola), and scrub. Be careful not to apply too much pressure, though. Scrub with medium force and re-dip your foil often. The Coke does work well, but it will make things a bit sticky. Try vinegar first. Regardless of what you use, after this method of chrome polishing, always rinse well with fresh water. In cases of more severe marks, aluminium foil can be substituted with very fine grade steel wool, but be aware it would leave some scratch marks on chrome surface.

V. All dried up. Once you’re satisfied with the cleanliness of your chrome, make sure you dry it really, really well. Chrome is absolutely notorious for developing water spots. The moment you get done washing chrome, grab a soft, dry towel and go over the entire object with it. It also works very well to dry chrome with used dryer sheets.

VI. Waxing chrome. Now for the last step, after polishing, if you want to keep your chrome looking nicer for longer and reduce the frequency of cleaning, we suggest you get yourself a good chrome wax. Actually, almost any car wax will do the trick. Just make sure to give whatever you’re waxing a couple coats. The first coat will fill any pores, and the second coat will provide all that nice lustre. Buff between coats.

You can wash the floor of your bathroom, clean the tub and shower, and disinfect the toilet, but if the faucets are clouded with mineral deposits, the bathroom will still look dirty. It doesn't have to be that way, because hard water deposits are surprisingly easy to remove, although you can't do it with plain water or even soap and water. These deposits are mineral salts, and you need to dissolve them with an acid. You can use a commercial lime-removing product, but white vinegar is just as effective, and you probably already have some.

Things You'll Need

  • White vinegar
  • Toothbrush
  • Spray bottle
  • Paper towels
  • Baking soda
  • Dental floss

Step 1: Mix a 1-to-1 solution of white vinegar and water in a small bowl. Dip an old toothbrush in the solution; use the toothbrush to scrub white deposits from your chrome faucet spouts and handles.

Step 2: Use full-strength vinegar for stubborn water stains. Spray it on with a spray bottle. Let it sit for 5 minutes to dissolve the mineral salts, and then scrub the stains with a toothbrush and wipe them off with a cloth.

Step 3: Soak a paper towel in vinegar and wrap it around a faucet with particularly stubborn stains. Leave the faucet covered overnight or until the white spots are gone.

Step 4: Pour some baking soda in a bowl, and moisten it with water to make a paste. Use this paste to scrub the faucet after you've finished treating it with vinegar. The baking soda treatment removes residual stains, and it neutralizes the vinegar so it doesn't etch the chrome. Wash the faucet with plenty of water when you're done.

Step 5: Polish the chrome with an automotive chrome-polishing product. Apply the polish with a soft cloth and buff it with another clean, dry, soft cloth.

Tips & Warnings

  • A commercial lime-removing cleaner will do the same job as vinegar. Follow the directions on the container for best results.
  • Use dental floss to get soap scum and other dirt from hard-to-reach areas around the base of the faucet, or between the handles and the faucet body. After you loosen the dirt and get it out in the open, rinse the faucet with water to wash the dirt away.
  • Avoid any type of abrasive cleaner or any cleaner containing strong acid, such as phosphoric, hydrofluoric or hydrochloric acid. You should also avoid caustic cleaners and those that contain chlorine bleach.