You love the way your crystal chandelier sparkles in the light, but you probably don’t love the cobwebs and grime that collect on all the tiny pieces. Not sure how to clean your crystal chandelier? There are two methods: cleaning the chandelier while leaving it in place, or taking it apart to clean the individual pieces. Here’s everything you need to know.
How to Clean a Crystal Chandelier without Taking it Down
This is the easier of the two methods. If you keep up with routine cleaning, the chandelier may never become dirty enough to require taking it apart. Here are some tips to help the process go smoothly:
- Lay a blanket on the floor under the chandelier to catch any pieces that might fall and prevent them from breaking.
- Turn off the chandelier as a safety precaution. Place a piece of tape over the light switch to prevent anyone from accidentally turning on the fixture while you’re working. If needed, set up an alternate light source so you can see what you’re doing.
- Create a solution of one part isopropyl alcohol to four parts distilled water.
- Put on white cotton gloves to prevent transferring your fingerprints to the crystal prisms as you clean.
- Climb onto a ladder to reach your crystal chandelier, if necessary.
- Spray your homemade cleaner onto a clean, lint-free cloth, such as a microfiber cloth. Don’t spray directly onto the chandelier—this will only make a mess.
- Gently wipe each crystal piece with the damp cloth. Then, to prevent water spots, immediately follow up with a dry, lint-free cloth.
Best Way to Deep Clean a Crystal Chandelier
For a more thorough cleaning, you’ll want to take the crystal prisms off the chandelier. This allows you to more easily reach every nook and cranny of the frame. Many crystal chandeliers have quite complicated hanging patterns, which might make you nervous about taking it apart. Follow these tips for the best success:
- Start by taking photographs, drawing pictures, and writing down notes to ensure you can put everything back together exactly the way it was.
- Use the same solution as outlined above (one part isopropyl alcohol to four parts distilled water), or create a mixture of lukewarm water and dish soap.
- Remove chandelier pieces one manageable section at a time, and hand-wash each piece.
- Dry immediately with a lint-free cloth to prevent spotting.
Other Useful Tips for Cleaning a Crystal Chandelier
- Dust your chandelier every two to three months with a feather duster or lamb’s wool duster. Then, complete your chosen cleaning method about once a year.
- Avoid ammonia-based cleaners, which can remove the finish from the gold- or silver-plated hooks that hold the crystal prisms in place.
- Never rotate the chandelier to reach each section. This could loosen the fixture’s supports, which could eventually cause it to fall. Instead, move your ladder around as you clean.
- While you’re at it, consider replacing the light bulbs, especially if the chandelier is hard to reach.
If your chandelier hangs too high, or the design is so elaborate that you don’t feel comfortable taking it apart, you may need to call a professional.