How to Clean Copper Outdoor Lights

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Copper lighting can add a nice touch of elegance to the exterior of your home, whether it be track lighting down your driveway or hanging lights in your patio. However, because the lights are outdoors and exposed to the weather, you need to make sure to stay on top of cleaning them. Copper lighting not cleaned and maintained can deteriorate to a point beyond saving.

Things You'll Need

  • Sponge
  • Lemon
  • Salt
  • Copper polish
  • Rag
  • Turn off the copper lights to be cleaned. You are applying liquids as you clean the copper lights. Make sure you're not electrocuted while cleaning.

  • Remove any exposed light bulbs from the copper lighting. This gives you more room to maneuver while cleaning the lights.

  • Cut a lemon in half. Dip the half into salt and scrub the copper lighting fixtures. The acid in the lemon helps loosen any tarnishes on the lighting and the grit of the salt helps scrub the tarnish away.

  • Remove the lemon juice and salt from the copper light with a damp rag.

  • Rub a damp sponge on any light where the lemon and salt combination did not remove all of the stains. Once the light is rubbed and dampened, sprinkle on powdered copper polish. The moisture helps the polish adhere to the light. (You can use polish products such as Ajax powder or Bar Keeper's Friend: Copper Glow Powder.)

  • Leave the polish on the lights for a few moments. Then take the damp sponge and clean off the polish. Tough tarnishes and stains on the copper lighting should wipe off with the polish.

  • Dry off the copper lighting thoroughly. Replace any light bulbs you have removed. It is best to wait a few hours before turning the lights back on, just in case some condensation made its way into the light fixture.

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