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The Glass, Crystal and Mirror FAQ

Never wash windows while the sun is shining on them because they dry too quickly and leave streaks When polishing windows use up and down strokes on one side of the window and side to side strokes on the other to tell which side requires extra polishing
To polish windows or mirrors to a sparkling shine, try a natural linen towel or other soft cloth, a clean, damp chamois cloth, a squeegee, or crumpled newspaper. (A word of warning: while newspaper does leave glass lint-free with a dirt- resistant film, persons with sensitivities to fumes from newsprint may wish to avoid the use of newspaper as a cleaning tool. Use one of the following mixtures to clean glass and windows: Soil and Grease: 1/4 cup ammonia diluted in 2 quarts of warm water Hard Water Deposits and Soil: 1/4 cup vinegar diluted in 2 quarts of warm water Heavy Soil and Grease Build Up: combine 1/2 cup ammonia, 2 cups rubbing alcohol and 1 gal water
Tip: When washing windows, wash sills and cross pieces first. Wipe windows with lintless cloth, paper towels or crumpled newspapers. To prevent streaking, wash windows out of direct sunlight. For touch-ups, keep any one of the above preparations in a spray bottle, spray on dirty area and wipe.Vinegar. Wash windows or glass with a mixture of equal parts of white vinegar and warm water. Dry with a soft cloth. Leaves windows and glass streak-less. (To remove those stubborn hard water sprinkler spots and streaks, use undiluted vinegar.)Borax or Washing Soda. Two tablespoons of borax or washing soda mixed into 3 cups water makes a good window cleaner. Apply to surface and wipe dry.Lemon Juice. Mix 1 tablespoon lemon juice in 1 quart water. Apply to surface and wipe dry.Baking Soda. To clean cut glass, sprinkle baking soda on a damp rag and clean glass. Rinse with clean water and polish with a soft cloth.Scratches, Stains, And Discoloration In Glass and Mirrors
Re-Silvering Contrary to popular opinions voiced elsewhere, it is as easy for a do it yourselfer to re-silver spots or marks on a mirror as it is to turn lead into gold... or water into iron. Save the effort. Maybe some day, but not now.Toothpaste. Rub a little toothpaste into the scratch. Polish with a soft cloth.Dry Mustard and Vinegar. Mix 1 part dry mustard and 1 part white vinegar into a paste. Apply paste to the scratch. Polish with a soft cloth. AVOID EYE CONTACT; DRY MUSTARD CAN BE DAMAGING TO THE CORNEA.
Glass is made from silica and other materials. It is not affected by the weather nor by most chemicals. Most glassware is easily broken by blows; sometimes hitting it hard only damages the glass invisibly so that later it shatters from just a light impact. Glass is blown or molded into many shapes for decorative items, and for beverage glasses and other eating and serving dishes.
Crystal is made from the same basic material as glass but lead is added to fine crystal which adds sparkle and strength. Heat-resistant glassware has been treated to withstand high temperatures. Such utensils may break when subjected to sudden changes in temperature. Oven-ware is not suitable for top-of-range use as it is not made to stand direct flame heat. Glass ceramics are made from hard crystalline materials which were first used on missile nose cones. Glass ceramics are used for range tops, counter tops, dinnerware, and cookware. The cookware may be used in the oven, under the broiler, on the stove, or in the microwave oven. They are guaranteed by the manufacturer not to break from temperature change.
Cleaning Decorative Cut Glassware and CrystalGlass flower vases, cruets, or carafes used to hold water, wine, oil or other liquids may develop stains in the bottom when allowed to set for a long time. Normal washing with soap and water may not get off all the stain. To remove these stains, try the following steps: Pour vinegar (brown or white) into glass so as to be above the stain mark. Allow to stand 30 minutes to overnight, depending on intensity of the stain.
Before emptying vinegar, add about 1/2 teaspoon dry uncooked rice, or 6-10 dry beans. Shake glass rapidly so hard grains can rub off loosened stain with a scouring action. Pour contents out. Rinse with water. Repeat if necessary. If not all the stain is removed, pour ammonia into the glass to be above stain mark and allow to stand over night. Add rice or beans and shake. Repeat if necessary. Commercial products can remove some stains. Read labels and follow directions exactly. You may need to add grains of rice or beans and shake to get scouring action with these products also. If you have crystal vases or carafes, do not leave flowers or food in them any longer than necessary, since chemical changes can occur which permanently stain crystal.Washing Glassware Decorated with Gold or SilverSome crystal or fine glassware has a gilt design or edge on the rim of glass or as a decorative design or a patterned glass dish. Never soak such items in solutions containing ammonia, washing soda or heavy duty detergents. Never use abrasive cleaning powders. Use regular mild, hand dish washing detergent and a soft cloth. A precaution would be to rinse such glassware in clear water while food residue is still fresh or soft.Heat Resistant GlasswareHeat resistant glassware can be washed by hand or in the dishwasher. Moderate alkalis, such as ammonia solution may be used when stronger cleaning is needed. Do not use abrasive scouring powders or other abrasives as they will scratch glass.

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