When unprotected bronze is exposed to the elements, it becomes oxidized over time, eventually forming a patina. Some prefer the greenish hue of a patina finish, which is a thin layer of hydrated, copper carbonate resulting from exposure to the air.
If you prefer your bronze plaque to look more polished, with a gold and copper hue, it’s important to care for it properly. Our clear coat, which is applied to the plaque at the foundry, will preserve the original finish for several years. However, it is important to note that all coatings eventually weather, leaving the metal unprotected.
To extend the life of the exposed finish, wash your bronze plaque with a soft cloth, mild soap and warm water. There is no need to buy expensive cleaners. Some of these products may actually do more harm than good. If the finish is beginning to tarnish, you can lightly sand the letters and the border with a fine grit paper, always sanding in the direction of the brushed finish. Use a toothbrush to get into any crevices and corners. Rinse with clear water to remove any soap residue.
Use a clear paste or carnauba wax, which can be found online or at most hardware stores. Avoid using car wax, as it tends to dry white and can be difficult to remove from nooks and crannies in your plaque.
If you’d prefer to have your plaque refinished professionally, please contact us. Sacred Engraving can fully refurbish, paint and recoat your plaque, prolonging its life and beauty.