How to Clean Custom Metal Plaques
Atlanta Signs – A Primer on HDU Sandblasted Signage
March 24, 2015
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How to Clean Custom Metal Plaques

After you have chosen a custom metal plaque for your business or outdoor display, onlookers are bound to be stunned by the gorgeous display. Bronze, brass or aluminum makes for an aesthetically pleasing addition to any property. To maintain the good look of the sign, be sure to clean metal plaques occasionally.

While it is true that these plaques are very low-maintenance and do not need the type of attention other materials may require, learning how to clean memorial metal plaques or building signs is always a good idea. Whether you choose to add the signs to the regular cleaning regimen of your venue’s exterior or just want to get around to them when you can, a bit of care helps maintain their beautiful appearances.


This material is famous for forming the beautiful green patina that is actually a highly desirable look for the majority of building owners. If you choose to delay this look, you can keep the bronze plaque looking like new with a few simple cleaning tricks.

  • Remove debris. Clean metal plaques made of bronze with a dry soft cloth. You may have to use cotton swabs to remove dust and dirt between letters or parts of a logo.
  • Rub with a bronze cleaner. Commercially available bronze cleaners are specifically formulated to protect this copper alloy. If you prefer to go the homemade route, simply mix together a paste of flour, salt and vinegar. When you reach the consistency of shoe cream, apply the mix to the soft cloth and rub it over the bronze. Before long, you will notice that the shine is restored. Wash off the paste and pat dry the plaque.
  • Apply paste wax.The wax protects the bronze from the elements. Do not skimp on the application of this substance! Give it some time to dry and then use a soft lint-free cloth to buff it. When you have reached a shine that reminds you of the day you brought home the brand-new plaque, you are done.

Usually you only need to clean memorial metal plaques made of bronze once a year to maintain their good looks and prevent the green patina from forming.


Brass is a favorite for our customers who delight in the warm gleam that this material gives off. Maintaining the beauty of custom brass plaques is not all that difficult. If you opted for brass plating, simply wash the plaque with hot soapy water. Use gentle dish soap. If you are not sure whether you chose brass plating or solid brass, do the magnets test. When a magnet sticks to your brass plaque, it is brass-plated. It if does not stick, you chose a solid brass plaque.

When you are dealing with solid brass, start by washing the plaque with hot soapy water. Do not be afraid to use an old toothbrush to get dirt out from between letters. If there are some discolorations that the water and soap do not clear off, simply switch to ketchup. The acidity of the tomato-based substance gets through these tough stains. Of course, there are also plenty of commercial brass cleaners on the market. All of the leading brands work wonders!


To clean metal plaques made of aluminum, choose a day that is mild and warm. It is very difficult to clean a piece of aluminum that is hot to the touch or freezing cold. Start by removing dust and detritus and then wiping the material with warm soapy water. Rinse frequently to note your progress.

Choose a commercial aluminum cleaner or use toothpaste that contains baking soda. Add a bit of peroxide to the toothpaste and use small circular motions to remove any stains that withstood the soapy water. Rinse and repeat if needed.

Who knew that it would be so easy to clean exterior memorial metal plaques? Need a plaque? It’s easy to get a quote!

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