Crystal chandeliers are beautiful. It’s important to keep them looking their best and maintain that beauty 365 days a year. This article will help you to do just that.
MAKE A DECISION: CRYSTALS ON OR CRYSTALS OFF?
A commonly asked question is can I clean a crystal chandelier without taking it two. The truth is there are two methods for cleaning a crystal chandelier – the ‘Crystals On’ Method and the ‘Crystals Off’ Method. You get to choose the one most convenient to you.
Before we tell you about each method, it’s important that we tell you that these methods can be done with a range of solutions. Those solutions are:
- A store purchased cleaner
- DIY vinegar cleaner
- DIY ammonia-based cleaner
- DIY isopropyl alcohol cleaner
METHODS TO QUICKLY AND EASILY CLEAN A CRYSTAL CHANDELIER
We will tell you more about how to prepare the DIY solutions further down in this article. But for now, let’s focus on the two methods.
METHOD 1: CRYSTALS ON
This method involves spraying the cleaning solution of your choice onto the crystal chandelier. It is the best method to use if you are not confident about removing the crystals from the chandelier or if you think you will face problems putting the crystals back on.
TOP TIP: Use this method before the chandelier is at the stage of being heavily soiled for it to be most effective.
You will require:
- Cleaning cloths (lint-free)
- Cloth gloves
- Distilled Water
- Ladder, or something safe to stand on
- Spray bottles
- The cleaning solution of your choice
- Thick sheet or thick towels
STEP 1: Turn Off The Lights
Ensure the lights are turned off and no electricity is going to the chandelier. You don’t want to get electrocuted!
STEP 2: Ensure Bulbs Are Tight/Protected
It would be best to tighten the bulbs to ensure the solution doesn’t get into the bulb sockets. It will be a good idea to place a sandwich bag over each bulb if you have sandwich bags available. It will add an extra layer of protection for the bulb.
STEP 3: Protect Your Floor
Take your thick sheet (possibly two) or thick towels and place them on the floor. This step is especially important if you opt for the ‘drip dry’ cleaning method, which will see dirt and cleaning solution dripping to the floor.
Even if using the wipe dry method, you should keep something on the floor as it will catch any crystals you might accidentally knock off.
Step 4: Prepare Solution
Get your cleaning solution ready to use. If making your own cleaning solution, prepare it and put it into the spray bottle. At this point, fill an additional spray bottle with distilled water.
If Using Drip Dry Method Do the Following (Wipe Dry Method Follows Underneath)
STEP 5: Spray the Chandelier with Solution
Spray the chandelier with your chosen solution. To do this effectively, get up your ladder so you can get those hard-to-reach places.
Ensure that you do not rotate the chandelier while spraying. If you rotate it, the chandelier could fall because you are loosening the support.
Should you need to access different parts of the chandelier, move your ladder around, get back up, and spray it from your new position.
TOP TIP: Keep spraying the chandelier until you see clear droplets coming down.
STEP 6: Spray the Chandelier with Distilled Water (Optional)
If you run out of solution but want to give the chandelier an extra rinse, use the extra bottle of distilled water. Distilled water will dry without leaving marks on the crystals.
STEP 7: Allow To Drip Dry
Simply allow your chandelier to dry.
STEP 8: Check The Chandelier
Wearing your gloves, check that the chandelier is fully clean. If you find any areas where the dirty clogged together during the process, you can remove this with the lint-free cloth. Once done, remove the sandwich bags (if you used them), and your lights are ready to use again.
If Using Wipe Dry Method Do The Following
Step 5: Spray Solution onto Cloth
Spray your chose solution onto your lint-free cloth. Remember, you will need to keep re-spraying the cloth as you clean.
STEP 6: Clean The Spindles
The spindles are the rods on the chandelier that hold the crystals and the lights. These should be cleaned first. Use a ladder to reach the uppermost parts. If not using a ladder, use something stable so that you will not overbalance and fall.
STEP 7: Clean The Crystals
Make a plan that involved dividing the chandelier into sections. Clean one section of the chandelier at a time to ensure all crystals on the chandelier get cleaned.
To get to each section of your chandelier, move your ladder to be placed beneath that section. Do not rotate the chandelier under any circumstances. Rotating the chandelier may cause it to fall from the ceiling.
METHOD 2: GLASS OFF
This method involves removing all the crystals from your chandelier to clean them. It is best when you have a chandelier that requires a very deep clean due to excessive build-up of dust or failure to maintain a regular cleaning regime.
Top Tip: To avoid using this method, dust the chandelier with a feather duster every two to three months.
You will require the following:
- A camera
- Cleaning Cloth (lint-free) (minimum 3)
- Cleaning Solution
- Cloth gloves
- Distilled Water
- Thick, soft towel
- Two basins
STEP 1: Put Blanket Under Chandelier
Place a blanket under the chandelier. This blanket will help to catch any crystals that fall as they are being removed.
STEP 2: Take A Picture Of Chandelier
Taking a picture will help you put the chandelier back together again, with everything back in place as it was before you cleaned it.
STEP 3: Remove Crystals
We recommend cleaning your chandelier crystals section by section rather than taking all the crystals at once. Therefore, you will be repeating Step 3 to Step 9 depending on how many sections you decide to create.
Once you have determined your sections, start removing crystals.
STEP 4: Place Crystals On Towel
Placing the crystals on a soft towel wherever you are working will help prevent any crystal loss that could occur by accidentally knocking one off your work surface.
STEP 5: Clean Spindles
The spindles are the rods that the crystals hang from. Clean this by dampening a lint-free cleaning cloth and wiping each spindle that has no crystals on it.
STEP 6: Clean Crystals In Solution
Place crystals into a basin filled with cleaning solution and allow them to have a short soak. After their soak, remove them one by one and remove any dirt using a lint-free cleaning cloth.
STEP 7: Rinse Crystals
Once the dirt has been removed from a crystal, place it in a second basin filled with distilled water to rinse it off.
STEP 8: Dry Crystals
Remove the crystals from the basin of distilled water. At this point, you should wear gloves to avoid getting finger marks on your freshly clean crystals. Dry each crystal with a fresh lint-free cloth.
STEP 9: Re-Hang Crystals
You are ready to re-hang the crystals. Again, do this by wearing gloves to ensure you don’t mark the crystals. You can use the photo taken in Step 2 to help you re-hang the crystals.
If doing this process in sections, return to Step 3 and repeat until all crystals on your chandelier are clean.
CLEAN A CRYSTAL CHANDELIER WITH VINEGAR
To make this solution, we recommend using Apple Cider Vinegar and water. Distilled water is preferable.
The ratio of ingredients required is as follows:
1 Cup Of Water + 1 Cup Of Apple Cider Vinegar.
Both the cup of water and the cup of Apple Cider vinegar must be equal. Use as many cups as needed to clean the crystal chandelier.
Clean using this Apple Cider Vinegar mixture three to four times a year.
TOP TIP: If you see rusting on chandelier spindles, you can use a white vinegar solution to remove the rust. If doing this, avoid getting white vinegar on the crystals. A white vinegar solution on a lint-free cloth can also be used for cleaning the light bulbs.
CLEAN A CRYSTAL CHANDELIER WITH AMMONIA
WARNING: If your chandelier has gold or silver plated hooks (these are used for hanging the crystals), an ammonia-based solution can cause damage. Check whether your chandelier can be cleaned using ammonia before making or applying an ammonia-based solution.
If you can clean the chandelier with ammonia, the ratio of ingredients is as follows:
1 Part Ammonia + 3 Parts Distilled Water.
CLEAN A CRYSTAL CHANDELIER WITH ISOPROPYL ALCOHOL
Isopropyl alcohol is also known as Rubbing Alcohol and is commonly used as an antiseptic.
If you want to clean your chandelier with Isopropyl Alcohol, the ratio of ingredients is as follows:
1 Part Isopropyl Alcohol + 4 Parts Distilled Water
WHEN SHOULD YOU CLEAN A CRYSTAL CHANDELIER?
- Regular Dusting
To avoid deep cleaning your crystal chandelier, you should try to dust the chandelier with a feather duster once every 2 to 3 months.
- Deep Cleaning
If you clean the chandelier through regular dusting, then a deep clean using a cleaning solution should only be required once a year.
A deep clean may be required two to three times a year if you fail to dust the chandelier regularly.
Note: The amount of cleaning required for your crystal chandelier depends on the conditions in your house.
TOP TIPS FOR CLEANING A CRYSTAL CHANDELIER
- Always Plan Ahead
Planning is vital when cleaning a crystal chandelier. Firstly, this is time-consuming work even when using a ‘quick’ method. You will need two hours minimum.
Make sure you schedule planned time for cleaning the chandelier so that you aren’t interrupted mid-cleaning.
2. Take Photos Of The Chandelier
We don’t mean take one photo. Take photos of the chandelier from every conceivable angle so that each and every crystal is re-hung exactly as it should be.
3. Avoid Ammonia-Based Solutions
While we have included an ammonia-based solution in this guide, please don’t use ammonia unless you are 100% certain it won’t damage the finishing on the crystal hooks or the spindles.
4. Use Homemade Cleaners
There’s nothing wrong with using a branded cleaner. Most avoid harmful chemicals and are perfectly safe to use.
However, if you check the ingredients, you will see the primary ingredient is distilled water.
You can make homemade solutions that work just as well but are more cost-effective. With the pre-bought solutions, you will be paying extra just for packaging and brand names.
5. Get Professional Help
When in doubt, call a professional.
Crystal chandeliers can be intricate and are expensive. You don’t want to ruin anything.
If needed, watch what a professional does at least once, so you can replicate their methods later on.