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Making Your Chandelier Sparkle

May 22, 2008 | by Wendy Weinert

When a crystal chandelier is initially installed, it can look like a million diamonds casting their prismatic spell throughout the room. Wow. But, just like everything else in your home, eventually the chandelier will get dirty and loose its sparkle and shine. Chandelier cleaning will bring your treasured lighting piece back to its original luster and sheen

Start by being proactive and dusting your chandelier often and thoroughly. This will keep excess dirt off your chandelier. Once a month dusting will keep most hanging lights shining nicely. Lighting in or near kitchens or fireplaces (or even in areas where you regularly burn candles) will require dusting weekly since they are in locations that collect grease and soot. Also, dust your chandeliers and other hanging lamps often if you have a smoker in your household. This smoke clings to surfaces just as fireplace smoke does.

You will also want to clean your chandeliers at least twice a year with a vinegar and water solution or mild, soapy water. Do not use harsher chemicals or abrasives or you will risk damaging your beautiful lighting choice. Again, depending on location and other factors, you may find yourself needing to deep clean your crystal chandelier as often as once every couple of months to keep it sparkling.

If your chandelier is located in a difficult area to access, consider hiring a professional to come and complete your chandelier cleaning regularly. Alternately, you may want to retrofit your chandelier with a lowering device made especially for hanging lamps to make cleaning easier for you or your professional cleaner.

During this deep cleaning of your chandelier, you should remove all crystals, clean and polish all of the metal, and replace all burned-out bulbs. This can be a lengthy process, especially if your chandelier is large or difficult to access. Still, do not cut cleaning corners. Instead, do it over a few days if you have to.

Always use a proper ladder or stepstool if you choose to clean difficult to reach hanging lights. Keep your cell phone attached to you in case you fall. Also, use thin rubber or latex gloves to help hold on to the crystals as you remove them from the chandelier.

Owning and maintaining a crystal chandelier takes dedication and effort. Most owners of chandeliers will agree that the work is worth it when guests visit and the sparkling prismatic crystals dance with light. However, others have switched to different lighting options to decrease maintenance and cleaning time. Other lighting options can be just as attractive, but nothing can beat crystal chandeliers for sheer “wow” appeal.

Clean chandeliers offer beautiful, warm, diffused light that offers the additional joy of sparkling with reflected and refracted light. Keep your chandeliers clean and enjoy!

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