How to Clean Old Mirrors

Cleaning old mirrors is easy.
Cleaning old mirrors is easy. (Image: the mirror image by Jan Will from

Old mirrors, when maintained properly, add a timeless, elegant touch to any room. When the mirrors have been left uncared for, however, they become an unattractive eye soar. Basic commercial cleaning products for glass and mirrors will remove light dust and residue that builds up over time, but they are not effective in removing heavy residue that has build up over the years. Instead, turn to a stronger, more effective cleaning solution.

Things You'll Need

  • Water
  • Denatured alcohol
  • Spray bottle
  • Lint-free cleaning cloth

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Fill a spray bottle with a 50/50 mixture of water and denatured alcohol. This diluted solution is completely safe for the mirror, but is much more effective than commercial products in cutting through years of residue and buildup.

Hold the spray bottle six inches away from the mirror surface, and spray a thick coating of the cleaning solution over the entire mirror. Let sit for two minutes.

Scrub the mirror clean with a lint-free cleaning cloth. To remove the majority of residue you will need to apply extra elbow grease, but this will pay off quickly as you notice the clear, original quality of the mirror begin to emerge.

Repeat until the mirror has been fully restored. Spray a coating of the cleaning mixture over the mirror every few minutes to keep the residue soft and easily removed.


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