How to Clean Oxidized Coins?

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Written By Paolo
A passionate collector of sneakers, Funko Pops, and Displates. Paolo has been a sneakerhead since teenager and has built an impressive collection of rare and highly sought-after kicks.

How to clean oxidized coins? Is there a way to prevent them? Coins can be a great way to add to your investment portfolio, and they’re also fun to collect but collecting coins have its problems like oxidation on coins. This article will guide you on why coins oxidize, how they oxidize, and if there is a way to prevent them.

Why Do Coins Oxidize?


Two main factors can lead to oxidation. The first is air and moisture. Coins are made of metal, which is a combination of different elements. When these elements come into contact with air, they react and form new compounds that give off heat energy as they decompose. Some metals also react with moisture in the air to form oxides on their surface. These reactions happen slowly over time, but they will eventually occur if you don’t take steps to prevent them from occurring in your coin collection!

How Do Coins Oxidize? and how to clean oxidized coins?


The first step in understanding oxidation is understanding what it is and how it happens. Oxidation, simply put, is a chemical reaction that occurs when oxygen and other elements react with the metal. In this case, you can think about oxidation as rusting—oxidation causes the metals to develop a surface layer of corrosion or rust-like material, which darkens the metal’s appearance and makes it harder for your coins to shine as they once did.

How to Clean Oxidized Coins?

How to Clean Oxidized Coins? 8
How to Clean Oxidized Coins? 9
How to Clean Oxidized Coins? 10

Oxidation is a thin layer of metal on a coin’s surface. It is not a chemical reaction but rather a physical change. The oxidation can be removed from your coins by rubbing it off with cotton balls and cotton swabs, then cleaning the cleaned area with warm soapy water.

If you want to clean oxidized coins without damaging them further. You should use only soft materials like cotton balls or cloths and avoid using abrasive materials such as steel wool or sandpaper. While oxidation is not toxic, it can be corrosive to the surface of coins and delay their numismatic value if left unchecked or improperly removed.

Is It Normal for Coins To Oxidize?

The answer is yes. Coins are made of metals such as copper, silver, and gold. These metals are all susceptible to oxidation and will change color when exposed to moisture in the air or other oxidizing elements such as sulfur or chlorine. This process is called “oxidation.” Oxidation is a chemical reaction when an atom loses electrons (reducing agent) and another atom gains electrons (oxidizing agent).

The oxidation process occurs at the atomic level when electrons move from one substance to another through an ionic bond – this can be seen as rust on your car’s bumper! Oxidation isn’t bad; it’s part of the aging process for everything from rocks to coins! However, there are ways you can prevent coins from oxidizing too fast so they look great for years instead of months.

What Are the KINDS Of Coins susceptible to oxidation?


When dealing with oxidation, it’s important to understand which coins are most susceptible. It turns out that copper and silver coins are the ones at the highest risk of being oxidized. These metals can oxidize within a few years, especially if moisture or high humidity is exposed.

Don’t forget about the sunlight! That’s right: if a coin has been exposed to sunlight for long enough, it will begin turning brown or green. This process is known as “bronzing.” You may have noticed that gold and platinum aren’t mentioned here. That’s because these metals don’t corrode as copper or silver do; they tarnish when exposed to oxygen–but that’s different from what happens with oxides!

Is There A Way To Prevent Coins From Oxidizing?

There is no definite answer to that question because, as mentioned above, oxidizing coins is normal because they are made from metals such as silver, copper, and even gold. Maybe you can’t stop your coins from oxidizing, but you can prolong this from happening if you handle your coins well. Here are some tips on how to prolong it:

  • Store them in an airtight container for coins.
  • Store them in a coin album.
  • Make sure to handle them as little as possible.
  • Keep them in a dry place.
  • Keep them away from sunlight.

Before you go…

So there you have it! I hope this article helped you answer your questions about how to clean oxidized coins. Coins usually oxidize over time due to circulation and physical touch and can even oxidize due to air and sunlight! Although oxidation is unavoidable, you can still prolong its effect by storing and handling them as little as possible. But for me, tarnishes on coins make them more beautiful, it shows the history associated with the coin, and you can see how long the lifespan is just by looking at it. Every coin has a different story, and its tarnishes are proof of it.

Check out my next article: “Is There a Safe Way to Clean Old Coins?

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