Like most people, you may believe that copper sinks require a lot of upkeep and are difficult to maintain. Despite being quite distinctive and different from a stainless steel or porcelain sink, a copper sink is not any more difficult to maintain than other sink materials.
It’s vital to understand the properties of copper before we get into the specifics of care. Compared to the materials used in most sinks, copper has some very special properties. These properties of copper make it unique and different from other substances.
Are copper sinks hard to maintain?
Copper is referred to as having a “living finish.” As a result, whether it’s in a sink, a coin, or the Statue of Liberty, the color and tones of your copper sink will continue to change through time. This is merely a property of copper. This, however, does not imply that the coppery shade of your copper sink will turn purple, green, or yellow.
Copper sinks need more attention and special care to maintain their best appearance and prevent a discolored film from forming over time.
This is because copper is a natural substance that responds to outside stimuli like food, acid, and cleaning product compounds. If you decide to use a bright copper finish for your sink rather than letting the patina develop naturally over time, you will need to clean and wax your sink frequently to keep the shine. If you slag, this raw copper will turn dark fast; consider how quickly a new copper penny tarnishes.
Choose one from a manufacturer for a beautiful, shiny, lacquered finish. Unfortunately, the lacquer will ultimately deteriorate, even with regular cleaning and the most delicate of care. Use a copper polish to clean the sink when you see the copper starting to darken or discolor. When the sheen is back, apply Carnauba wax or a special copper wax on the sink and buff to that same previous shine.
While you can unclog a copper sink just like you would any other type of sink, always clean a toilet plunger before using it on your sink. This prevents the transfer of germs from the toilet to the sink.
How to maintain copper sinks (copper sink care)
Contrary to popular opinion, copper sinks are not particularly demanding. It can last a lifetime with just a bit more care than you’re used to giving your sink. Below is information to help you with your sink:
Since copper’s patina is a natural process, many factors can influence how your sink gets the patina. The patina’s rate of development will depend on some factors, while others may cause it to strip. Your copper sink is not harmed in either case; the patina is changing.
Spots on your copper sink’s patina do not indicate that the metal is either in good condition or not. Whether the patina strips or not, your copper sink will last a lifetime. You’ll see a coppery glow on the surface of your copper sink when the patina peels off. This gleaming bright patch on your kitchen or bathroom sink will eventually fade and mix in with the other tones.
You can use the following substances can remove the patina from your copper sink:
- Acidic snacks include citrus fruits, tomatoes, ketchup, pepperoni, soda, oils, and oily foods like chips.
- Cosmetics, toothpaste, make-up, and shaving cream.
- For abrasive substances, avoid bleach and drain unclogging chemicals.
- Even finger oil can impact the patina, particularly on a naked copper finish.
If you expose these objects to your sink, try and make every effort to get rid of them as soon as possible. They will remove the patina if you keep them on for a long time.
The patina and other chemical reactions involving copper result in your bath water turning green or blue. This mostly occurs if you use copper pipes that aren’t cleaned or carry hard water.
The daily cleaning of a copper sink is the same as that of any other regularly used kitchen or bathroom sink. If you reside in a region with hard water, water spots will appear on the sink’s surface due to the minerals in the water. Dry the sink thoroughly after each use to avoid spotting.
If clogged, either use a sink plunger or a DIY snake. You can also opt for chemical cleaners, which may damage the copper.
If you wish to keep the appearance of a shiny lacquered copper sink, the lacquer will ultimately wear off. Therefore, the sink will require routine waxing with carnauba wax or specialty copper wax and relacquering or polishing with a copper cleaner.
How frequently the sink is used determines how often it needs to be waxed.
Rinse the sink thoroughly after each use to eliminate any food or cosmetic residue that might have accumulated there. In addition, it is crucial to rinse anything acidic that could damage the patina.
A few drops of liquid dishwashing soap on a sponge or dishcloth are all that’s required for cleaning. Do not forget to clean below any countertop rims with splatters that could harm the finish.
To tackle tough stains, make a paste of baking soda and a few drops of water on a sponge and use it to scrub away any stuck-on food or tough stains. For example, Verdigris, often known as green spots, may develop around fixtures where copper has been exposed to moisture for an extended period.
The baking soda paste will assist in removing these verdigris spots. In addition, simply cleaning the area after each use can prevent mineral build-up.
After cleaning, rinse the sink with warm water and dry the sink and fixtures with a lint-free cloth.
To make your sink look better and serve you longer, you should never leave dirty dishes or cleaning supplies. Always use a dishwashing pad at the bottom of your sink if it has a smooth, highly polished finish to stop pots and pans from scratching the surface.
Keep away from aggressive cleaners, polishes, and chemicals. Wax should be used at least once every six weeks to keep the finish bright.