Tips for Cleaning Cloudy Glass


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Tips for Cleaning Cloudy Glass

  1. 1. Heritage AuctionsTips for Cleaning CloudyGlasswww.FineArt.HA.comBy Reyne Haines
  2. 2. Tips for Cleaning Cloudy Glass By Reyne HainesThere are many things to consider when collecting glass. First, we decide why we are collectingit. Is it because we saw something at a friends place that caught our eye, or did we inherit a setof dishes when grandma passed away? Did we read in a magazine about the increase in value ofart glass over the years and decide that while the stock market is down, we will park our moneyin a different type of "investment".Once we have chosen a style of glass we like and can afford, we look to educate ourselvesfurther about when it was made, what the company made and where we might find more.Fortunately, your local bookstore offers an abundance of books on collecting all patterns andperiods of glassware to help you. These books often provide background information and historyof the manufacturer, patterns and pieces that were made by the company and during what timeperiod. Many of these books, depending on the type of glass, offer a price guide of sorts to helpyou get a basic idea of what to pay for additional pieces you find in your travels.The one thing the books might not mention is condition. Condition can be a major factor in thevalue of any piece of glassware. Most collectors are purist. By that, we mean they want things inmint condition, as if they just came off the showroom floor. No chips, cracks, roughness orsickness. The only exception to this rule is extremely rare pieces. Condition is still ofimportance, but because of a crack or chip, collectors are still interested in the piece because ofits rarity.
  3. 3. Chips sometimes can be repaired if they are not too large or too deep. A local glass repairman (orglass grinder) can polish them smooth. As for cracks, there is little that can be done. Roughnessmany times is found in Depression glass, or other mass-produced glassware made from a mold.Mass produced glass is often poor quality and has flaws that were overlooked when finishing.Sick glass, or cloudy glass as it is often called can sometimes be remedied.Cloudy glass is an industry word describing glass that has calcium deposits which causes a light"foggy" type appearance in glassware. The water that held the flowers in the vase or therepetitive washing of the tumbler is the culprit. They need not stay in this condition. There areseveral ways to bring that vase back to its original lustre.Over the years collectors have reported a number of household products that they have foundcleaned the lightest, to the heaviest hard water stains. Below are just a few of them. 1. Fill the object with a mix of ammonia and water. A few hours should do the trick if the stain is not too thick. 2. Vaseline or petroleum jelly can sometimes remove light calcium build-up. Let it sit for 4- 5 days before removing. 3. Fill with luke warm water and drop in a denture cleaner tablet. 4. Pearl Drops Toothpaste has been recommended for light calcium stains. Dab a little on your index finger and lightly rub. Wash with water. 5. Dow Tub and Tile cleaner. Spray on, let sit, then rinse. 6. There is a product in the supermarkets called Krazy Kloth. It is highly recommended for the toughest hard water stain. Follow the directions on the packaging, and wash with luke warm water. 7. Lime Away. The same product you use on your tub and shower doors. Always remember for products that require rubbing to do it lightly and in small circles.Remember, never wash glassware with cold or hot water. Extreme temperature changes cancause glass to crack or shatter. Also, glassware should not be placed in the dishwasher. Again,hard water stains will eventually appear, and there is also the possibility the vibration of thedishwasher can cause a piece to shatter. The best way to clean your glass is to wash by hand,always with luke warm water and mild dishwashing soap (liquid), and towel dry.Often, great pieces of glass are passed upon at shows and shops because of their cloudyappearance. If the price the piece is being offered to you is reasonable, dont pass it by!Reyne Haines has been a dealer in Decorative Arts since 1991. She has been an appraiser with Antiques Roadshowsince 1997 and owns Reyne Gallery in downtown Cincinnati Ohio.Heritage Auctions, headed by Steve Ivy, Jim Halperin and Greg Rohan, is the world’s third largest auctionhouse, with annual sales more than $750 million, and 600,000+ online bidder members. For moreinformation about Heritage Auctions, and to join and gain access to a complete record of prices realized,along with full-color, enlargeable photos of each lot, please visit
  4. 4. Want to get the up-to-the-minute updates and breaking news stories about Heritage Auctions? Get themas they happen at:; Facebook: view acomplete archive of Heritage press releases, go to: