How to Clean Door Handles (Metals, Crystal, Glass and Plastic) 

Published June 21, 2022
woman cleaning door handle

Have you looked at your doorknobs lately? You probably have when you were opening your bedroom door to put away the laundry. You use doorknobs daily, but they're one of those areas people often forget about when it comes to cleaning. Learn how to clean all your outdoor and indoor doorknobs and door handles with a few simple instructions.

Get Door Handles Clean: Materials

Are you pumped to clean door handles? Probably not. Thankfully, door handles are pretty small and easy to clean with a few materials found around your house. Get the deets on how to clean and sanitize your door handles with:

  • Lemon
  • Salt
  • Baking soda
  • White vinegar
  • Aluminum foil
  • Mild dish soap
  • Microfiber cloth
  • Sponge with green scrubby
  • Brass sealer
  • Rubbing alcohol
  • Wax polish
  • Aluminum pan
  • Flour (gluten-free flours also work)
  • Salt
  • Old toothbrush

How to Clean Brass Doorknobs and Knockers Naturally

Old houses are full of brass doorknobs. Cleaning them is fairly simple with a few instructions.

  1. Wipe down the door handle with a microfiber cloth to remove dust.
  2. Add a bit of dish soap to warm water.
  3. Dip your cloth in the water and wipe down your handle.
  4. For heavy tarnish, squeeze half a lemon into a bowl.
  5. Add enough baking soda to make a paste.
  6. Use a cloth to buff the paste onto the knob.
  7. Repeat until the tarnish is gone.

How to Protect Brass Door Handles

If you are dealing with an old doorknob, you might want to consider sealing it to protect the knob from tarnishing.

  1. Dip a rag in the brass sealer.
  2. Apply it to the door handle.
  3. Allow it to dry completely.
  4. Add a second coat.
  5. Re-coat your brass doorknobs about once a year.

How to Clean Sterling Silver and Silver-Plated Door Handles

You love your sterling silver knobs. Fortunately, cleaning them is quite easy. For the most part, you can use the soap and water method. However, if you've got some severe tarnish going on, consider taking them off the door and trying this method. Learn how to clean oxidized door handles with ease.

  1. Put your doorknobs in an aluminum tray.
  2. Add one cup of baking soda.
  3. Add enough boiling water to cover the knobs.
  4. Allow them to cool.
  5. Pull them out and polish them with a microfiber cloth.
  6. Add the knobs back to the door.

Simple Ways to Clean Pewter Door Handles

Pewter is a popular doorknob material. The handles look nice and fancy on your doors. Like most, basic cleaning just requires a bit of soap and water. Tarnish on your pewter doorknobs is a different beast. To tackle tarnish, you need the white vinegar in your corner.

  1. Mix 1 teaspoon of salt, 1 cup of vinegar, and enough flour to make a paste.
  2. Apply the paste to the door knob.
  3. Let it sit for 15 or so minutes.
  4. Wipe away with a damp cloth.
  5. Buff with a dry microfiber cloth.

If you don't have any baking soda but do have a cabbage, you can try rubbing the cabbage leaves on the handles to remove tarnish. This method also works great on pewter hinges.

How to Clean Stainless Steel and Nickel Door Handles and Hinges

wipe chrome door knob handle with microfiber cloth

Many newer doorknobs are made of nickel. Your locks, hinges, and doorknobs are super easy to clean with a bit of soap and water.

  1. Add a few drops of dish soap to warm water.
  2. Dip a microfiber cloth in the mixture.
  3. Wipe down the knob.
  4. Rinse the cloth and wipe with only water.
  5. Buff dry with a dry microfiber cloth.
  6. For quick sanitizing, add a bit of alcohol to a cloth and wipe the entire knob.
  7. To add shine, put a bit of wax on a cloth.
  8. Buff until shiny.

Easy Methods for Cleaning Crystal, Glass, and Plastic Doorknobs

Do you have fancy doorknobs? Fancy glass, crystal, and plastic doorknobs are pretty easy to clean with a white vinegar solution.

  1. In a spray bottle, add 2 parts water to 1 part white vinegar.
  2. Spray down the knob.
  3. Use an old toothbrush to scrub away grime.
  4. Wipe with a damp cloth.
  5. Buff with a dry microfiber cloth.

How Often to Clean Doorknobs

wipe clean front door knob handle

Cleaning doorknobs is right up there with scrubbing light switches when it comes to things everyone forgets to clean. However, doorknobs carry a lot of germs. So, clean or sanitize your doorknobs about once a week. You'll want to do a heavy cleaning on your doorknobs when you clean your doors.

How to Clean Door Handles

Door handles are all over your home. From your entrance to your bedroom, you go in and out of doors all the time. Therefore, you need to keep them clean and germ-free. Many times, you can do this by wiping them down once or twice a week. However, if you've just bought a house, you might need to do a deep cleaning that includes door handles and light switches.

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How to Clean Door Handles (Metals, Crystal, Glass and Plastic)