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13 Aug

How Do You Maintain and Clean Picture Frames?

Cleaning dirty photo frame

Frames are a stylish and practical way to show off photos, pictures and mementos, however the best way of maintaining and cleaning your frames depends on what material they are made out of.

Wooden Picture Frames

You should regularly dust the frame gently to prevent dust from building up and causing scratches. Less frequently you should clean the frame more thoroughly, by taking apart the frame gently and cleaning the parts individually. To do this, follow the steps below:

  • When you have separated the parts, make sure you place them gently on a soft surface – particularly the frame and the glass covering to avoid damaging it. Unsightly scratches can be difficult to mend.
  • For the frame, use a soft cloth (not paper towels as it may cause scratching) or, alternatively, a soft brush if the frame is embossed. Gently clean the frame but avoid using any liquids as this may cause damage. Only use liquids along with proper wood cleaning products to ensure the wood is protected.
  • For the glass you can use soap and water or a specialist glass-cleaning product. Bear in mind, if the protective cover is acrylic, just soap and water should be used.
  • Infrequently use polish to maintain shine and protect the wood. Again use a soft cloth and not a paper towel that may scratch the wood.
  • Ensure every part of the frame is dry before putting the parts back together to avoid damage to the frame or the contents.

Metal Picture Frames

How to properly clean and maintain your picture frame depends on the type of metal the frame is made from.

  • Ensure you have separated all the parts of the frame to avoid any damage to the picture from water or cleaning products.
  • If the metal is protected, e.g. through lacquer, then you can simply use water to wipe down the surface.
  • If the metal is unlacquered, such as silver plating, then you can use a specialist silver cleaning product. Using this type of product on a lacquered frame may cause damage to the finish.
  • Again, make sure the parts are all dry before putting the frame back together again.
  • To maintain the frame occasionally dust and wipe down the frame with a soft cloth.

If you are ever unsure what products are suitable to use on your frame, either consult a specialist or test it on a patch of the frame that is out of sight to see whether it affects the finish.


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