Oct 21, 2013

Cleaning Rusty Coins

Most of these five-peso coins were rusty.  I got them inside our big lotion bottle recycled into a piggy bank. Hubby has this habit of turning empty containers into instant piggy banks, where all his loose change go at the end of the day. When they're all filled, we empty all the coins out and spend them or save them for future use. Sometimes he forgets about them but I don't, haha. He thought the bottle was all empty but the lotion residue made the coins look rusty. I had to research on how to clean them. I cannot take them to the stores (whether to exchange for bills or buy something) looking like that because the stores might not accept them anymore. How do I take the rust out of those coins? Most of the suggestions online were to let the coins rest in a container full of vinegar and then scrub. And that is what I did. Not all of the rust were scrubbed off but at least the details became sharper and the rusty color faded a bit.

But for valuable coins, like collectible coins, the military coins and those coins that are really old or what they say has valuable dates, coin collectors would say that the best way to clean them is NOT to clean them at all. Cleaning them improperly would decrease their monetary value. So the best thing to do is to determine if the coin has value (collector value) before you clean them. What NOT to use in cleaning valuable coins are: metal polish, sand paper, steel wool, vinegar, muriatic acid, silver dip type cleaner, silver polish, et cetera. If you have to clean coins for hygienic purpose, some coin collectors suggest to wash them with mild detergent and warm water, but do not soak.

There are many other suggestions on how to clean the coins that I have (i.e. not collector item coins). Some sites suggest Coca Cola, baking soda, soap and water, lime and water or lemon juice. Anyway, I didn't really put much effort into it anymore. The stores accepted my five-peso coins, anyway. End of the story. :)


  1. Those five peso coins brings back memories sis, I used to save all my five peso coins in a n empty bleach jug lol.

  2. i guess the vinegar will do, ang importante tatanggapin sa tindahan. hehehe

  3. Baking soda is a good material to clean them.

  4. I remember cleaning my old coins before with Glo metal polish. It was too tedious though having to wipe each one at a time. I think I'll try your vinegar soak next time I want to clean old coins.


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