Cleaning your coins is a delicate business. You don’t want to do or use things that may ruin and lower value of your coins. Do consult a professional coin collector or dealer about the right way to clean your coins. Or try a coin cleaning method recommended by the United States Mint.
Avoid using harsh chemicals and cleaners such as:
- jewelry cleaners
- sulfuric acids
- coin polishing liquids
- coins dips
- coin brighteners
- coin darkeners
- silica gel units
These may ruin your coins.
Jewelry cleaners like ammonia or toothpaste have chemicals and abrasive particles that remove the dirt but damage the coin surface. Sulfuric and vinegar acids start working immediately after being applied to coin surface. While they cut in and remove dirt very effectively, they continue eating and eroding your coin far beyond the dirt. Rinsing acids that stop erosion process take time to kick in and may not remove all acids.
Coin polishing liquids, coins dips, coin brighteners and darkeners carry the same risks as sulfuric acids and vinegars.
In summary, stay away from home-made or nonspecialty chemicals. You are much safer with specialty coin cleaning supplies.