Precious metals are naturally occurring chemical compounds that command a high economic value due to their luster and rarity. Though no longer used as currency, these metals still sell for high prices and possess great economic value, particularly in the forms of jewelry and coinage. Maintenance and proper care of precious metals are necessary so they retain their aesthetic and monetary value. Even more specifically, each type of metal has its own specific properties requiring different levels and methods of care. Keep reading for information on how to care for your precious metals, brought to you by the experienced professionals from First National Bullion and Coin. San Diego collectors rely on our expertise and extensive knowledge about every aspect of buying, selling, and owning precious metals.
Silver is among the more high-maintenance metals. Exposure to air and moisture results in an oxidation reaction that discolors it, making it highly susceptible to tarnishing. However, proper care can easily prevent this from happening. Caring for silver involves keeping it sealed away safely in a cool, dry area while unused, thus preventing reactions with air and moisture. Keeping anti-tarnishing slips and silica packs alongside silver can also help by wicking away moisture and pollutants that may tarnish it. Removing silver necklaces and other items while swimming or showering also helps greatly, as exposure to water, heat, and chemicals like chlorine can be harsh on them. Lastly, DIY methods and home remedies should be avoided, as these often entail poor techniques and the use of corrosive substances. Silver that’s tarnished or otherwise needs maintenance should be wiped down and cleaned with specially tailored products or taken to a professional if in more serious need of care.
Karat gold is vulnerable to damage from soap residue buildup, so removing gold jewelry prior to showering and handwashing can go a long way toward preventing tarnishing. Regular cleaning with a chamois or eyeglass cleaning cloth can also protect gold in the long run. Specially designed commercial cleaners can provide a deeper clean, while a soft toothbrush can be effective in gently brushing dirt away from delicate, hard-to-reach crevices.
Gold vermeil, despite the name, isn’t actually gold but rather another metal that’s lightly gilded. As a result, any harsh cleaners that could remove the thin gold surface plating should be avoided. As with its karat counterpart, wiping and buffing with a soft, clean cloth usually works well at preserving its luster. Asking a jeweler to periodically replate the gold, depending on frequency of use, is also highly recommended.
Platinum is the most resilient of the precious metals. Unlike silver, it seldom tarnishes, and any scratches or color changes can usually be buffed out by a jeweler or wiped away with a clean cloth. A plating of rhodium can also serve as a preventive measure to safeguard against blemishes and preserve platinum’s texture and luster. However, it’s worth noting that platinum commonly features in wedding rings and other jewelry, meaning it may be accompanied by precious gemstones that don’t have nearly the same resilience as platinum against chemicals found in many cleaning products. Nonetheless, a simple diluted solution of dishwashing liquid and lukewarm water should suffice.
For more information on any aspect of owning precious metals, call on the experts at First National Bullion and Coin. Whether they’re looking to buy platinum coins, gold bullion, or silver bars, San Diego residents can trust our reputable dealers. We’re a boutique precious metals firm with experienced professionals. If you’re looking to add more precious metals to your collection, call us today at 858-666-6570.
The statements made in this blog are opinions, and past performance is not indicative of future returns. Precious metals, like all investments, carry risk. Precious metals and coins may appreciate, depreciate, or stay the same in cash value depending on a variety of factors. First National Bullion does not guarantee, and its website and employees make no representation, that any metals for sale will appreciate sufficiently to earn the customers a profit. The decision to buy, sell, or borrow precious metals and which precious metals to purchase, borrow, or sell are made at the customer’s sole discretion.