- Care and Maintenance for Copper Sinks
- Copper sinks are naturally durable, thanks to its layer of Patina
- Caring and Maintenance for Copper Sinks
- Caring for the copper’s natural patina
- When cleaning a treated copper sink, reapplying a thin layer of wax may be necessary to keep the sink’s fresh look
- As a general rule of thumb - mild soap dish, water, and a soft cloth does the job of cleaning both treated and untreated copper sinks
Care and Maintenance for Copper Sinks
Copper sinks create a distinct architectural character may they be installed in the kitchen or the bathroom. The natural reddish-orange color of this non-ferrous metal gives this material a standout appeal that can not be easily matched by any other sink material. Additionally, copper is an essential metal that boasts a wide array of properties and characteristics that are very useful for a variety of purposes. Hammered by hand until the desired form is achieved, copper sinks are indeed an artisan work of art that is slowly creating its mark in both the kitchen and the bathroom due to its one-of-kind, rustic, and edgy aesthetics.
A majority of the population believe that copper sinks are very difficult to clean and would often call for high maintenance. However, these are the only false assumption. While there is no doubt that copper sinks are unique and comparably different to sinks made of other materials, they are not at all that difficult to maintain. Just like the usual fireclay or porcelain sink, food traces and bacteria build up also happen to copper sinks and keeping them squeaky clean is not as tough as it seems. Below are some guides and tips on proper care and maintenance for copper sinks.
Copper sinks are naturally durable, thanks to its layer of Patina
Copper is metal that is known to have a natural living finish. What this means is that over time, the color, tone, and overall finish of the copper will change. It is an inevitable nature of copper, may it be in the form of a sink, a penny, or any other copper products. This shifting of colors from a light coppery tone to a deeper copper color is caused by the layer of oxide that has been naturally developing on the surface of the copper, otherwise known as the patina process. The patina, to put things simply, act as a protective layer for the copper. Essentially, this keeps the metal from corrosion.
Caring and Maintenance for Copper Sinks
When a copper sink is left untreated and the copper is made into a sink as it is, then it is considered raw. Generally, this kind of copper sink is easier to clean and maintain. A simple concoction of mild soap and water can do the job when it comes to cleaning along with a soft cloth for wiping. Additionally, copper sinks are known to possess unique antimicrobial properties, which means that bacteria and germs can’t thrive on and survive in a copper sink for more than twenty-four hours.
Another reason why raw copper sinks are generally easier to clean and maintain is their natural patina. When choosing raw copper sinks, it is a no-brainer to wait for the patina to naturally develop. This easily happens with raw copper sinks as they don’t have any lacquer coating that slows down this process. Moreover, this adds up convenience to the maintenance, as re-applying any wax or other types of coating to keep the sink in its mint condition is not necessary.
To summarize, mild dish soap, water, and a soft cloth are all that is needed when cleaning a raw copper sink. Abrasive cleaners and chemicals may cause more damage than cleaning to a copper sink, so it is best to just avoid them.
Caring for the copper’s natural patina
The patina process in copper sinks is natural, but still, some factors may affect the way the patina will develop. Some substances and chemicals may cause the patina to strip, or even affect how quickly the film will develop. Below are some of the factors that can affect the patina of a copper sink:
- Acidic substances such as orange juice, ketchup, soda, etc.
- Toothpaste and makeup residue
- Abrasive substances and chemicals like bleach
- Certain oils
To care for the copper’s natural patina, it is best to avoid the things mentioned above from sitting too long or getting in contact with the copper sink. If it can’t be avoided, then make sure to wash the surface with water and mild soap right after it is exposed to any of these substances.
When cleaning a treated copper sink, reapplying a thin layer of wax may be necessary to keep the sink’s fresh look
Treated copper sinks are lacquered to keep them from developing the patina. This kind of copper sinks usually has a bright, polished, and shiny finish. When it comes to cleaning this type of copper sink, the same rules apply: mild soap dish, water, and a soft cloth - that’s it. Abrasive cleaners and chemicals should also be avoided, as well as brass and hard brushes. When the sink comes in contact with acidic substances, a quick wash and wipe should be done to remove any residue and keep the sink damaging. However, to maintain the sink’s shine and sleek look, reapplication of a thin layer of wax that does the job is necessary. An additional coating of lacquer can also be applied to further delay the development of patina.
As a general rule of thumb - mild soap dish, water, and a soft cloth does the job of cleaning both treated and untreated copper sinks
Keeping a copper sink clean and well-maintained does not necessarily have to be complicated. At the end of the day, a mild soap dish, clean water, and a soft cloth are all that is needed to keep the sink clutter-free and squeaky clean.