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topic 33534

Refinishing polished brass faucet that turned silver


We are remodeling our bathroom and we tried cleaning our polished brass faucet; well we cleaned it with vinegar and now we have a silver faucet. How can we or what can we do, to get our polished brass faucet back? is there a way to refinish our faucet in polish brass?

Simon Heridis
homeowner - Los Angeles, California U.S.A.


It sounds like you managed to induce a chemical reaction on the metal that was plated over the faucet, you have either removed the coating or changed it's color. Try using Brasso [linked by editor to product info at Amazon] or Nevr-Dull [linked by editor to product info at Amazon] to restore the original color, if that doesn't work you will need to get it replated by a professional plating company.

Marc Banks
- Elizabeth City, North Carolina


What you are looking at is not silver but probably the nickel underplate over which a thin brass plate had been. You can not get the brass back, it is gone. Depending on the cost of the fixture it would probably be best to get a new fixture, one of the ones which is protected by a "plastic" layer (generally have a long term tarnish warranty)

Gene Packman
process supplier - Great Neck, New York


I have used a stripper for removing lacquer from the faucet but it does not touch it. What can I use to strip the old lacquer finish? Also what is the best lacquer to use?

Mike Thompson
handyman - Mobile, Alabama


Is there a good reason for confidence that the faucet is brass? The newer "lifetime" finishes are zirconium nitride or other PVD processes. And some faucets that look like brass are a brass-tinted electrophoretic lacquer on top of nickel plating--remove the 'lacquer' and you've removed the brass color.

Ted Mooney, Teds signature
Ted Mooney, P.E. RET
Pine Beach, New Jersey

May 8, 2008

Hi, with regard to the brass colour being gone as you stated, I have the same kind of fittings and they are scratched, is there anything I can do?

Michael Leahy
- Ireland

August 15, 2008

My brass kitchen faucets from Chicago Faucet need refinishing. How do I remove "plastic finish" and what do I use for the new lacquer finish?

janice mickelson
- Fergus Falls, Minnesota

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