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What Are Some Tips for Cleaning Old Glass Bottles?

Improper handling and cleaning can damage valuable bottles and decrease their value, so you should follow some important steps when washing the glass. First, soak the bottle in a mixture of room temperature water and dishwashing liquid, cushioning the glass with a towel on the bottom of the sink or basin. Never use cold or hot water, as that can crack the glass. Let the bottle soak overnight or just for a few hours, and then rinse it with room temperature water to remove layers of grime and dirt. To remove crusty, white mineral deposits from old glass bottles, use a commercial product meant for cleaning mineral buildup and lime scale deposits. Cloudy white stains come from erosion of the glass components due to liquids kept inside of the bottles or long exposure to moisture. Collectors often refer to this appearance as "sick glass". To clear up cloudy white stains, use a commercial bottle cleaner as soon as possible in an effort to reverse the damage. If you use a brush on the bottles, make sure the bristles are soft. Never use a cleaner that has hydrofluoric acid, as that can ruin glass. Fill bottles with vinegar and rice, and shake them to clean the insides.

How Do You Remove Rust Stains from an Antique Bottle?

Bottles that have spent years underground and in constant contact with moisture often have rust stains, which are typically difficult to remove. Use a non-abrasive cleaning pad to scrub the stain, such as a copper wool pad used for scraping dishes. You can also remove the stain using a mixture of water and muriatic acid, but practice caution when using the acid, wearing gloves and goggles for safe handling of the substance.