How To Refinish Brass Hardware

Brass is an alloy of zinc and copper, which is used for decoration as well as in making several items like doorknobs, locks, bearings, gears and valves. Its color is somewhat brownish yellow or close to gold. This is also used for making zippers and musical instruments. The bright and gold like color of brass products will last for a long time. However, this will eventually turn dull and lose the appeal it once had. This doesn’t mean that you need to replace this with a new one, as this will surely cost you a lot of money. Brass products are a bit expensive. Refinishing these will make the products bright and gold like again. This is also cheaper than replacing your brass products. You can do this on the brass hardware on your cabinets or doors.

Here are the steps on how to refinish brass hardware.

  • Prepare the things that you will use in refinishing your brass hardware. These are cloth gloves, clean cloth, brass polish, toothbrush, ammonia, varnish, detergent, screwdriver, polyurethane stripper, water and paintbrush. Do not wear the cloth gloves yet when cleaning the brass. Wear this after cleaning so that you will not leave prints on the hardware.
  • Remove brass hardware. Get the brass hardware that you will refinish from your cabinets and doors. To prevent misplacing the screws, place these in one place. It’s better to put these on a box to avoid from rolling from the surface. If the screws have different sizes, you may want to put the screws used in one hardware in one small plastic and label so that it will be easier for you to put these back after refinishing the hardware.
  • Remove old polyurethane coat. Check the instructions on your polyurethane stripper. There are those that require mixing with water and others are used by wiping on the brass. Follow the instructions of the manufacturer. If the stripper you purchased requires mixing with water, this means that you need to soak your brass hardware to the mixture to remove old coat. Check with the instructions on how long you should soak the hardware to the mixture.
  • Polish brass hardware. After soaking your brass hardware, get a clean cloth and wipe these to dry. Get another cloth and use this to apply brass polish on your hardware. If you see any dirt that is hard to remove, apply a few drops of ammonia and continue polishing. You may use a toothbrush to apply polish on cracks. Once done, dampen a cloth with a mixture of detergent and water and wipe the hardware. Dampen another cloth with water and wipe the hardware. Dry this with a clean cloth. Wear the cloth gloves to prevent the hardware from getting marks. If there are marks, these will stay on the hardware after coating.
  • Coat the brass hardware. Apply varnish or other clear coat to your brass hardware using paintbrush. You can also use spray varnish or clear coat. There are also clear coats that require you to dip the brass hardware.

Make sure that the area where you’re working is at room temperature so that the coat will easily adhere to the hardware. Once brass hardware is dry, put these back on your cabinets and doors. Your brass hardware will have its brightness and appeal back.


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