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How to Remove Cloudiness Off Crystal

A white cloudy-like appearance can turn crystal items into an unsightly eyesore. Various culprits can be the cause of the cloudy discoloration on the crystal surface. The most common cause is either a buildup of minerals caused by hard water or hot water reacting to high phosphate detergents in the dishwasher.

Stemware and vases are two common items made with crystal.

A white cloudy-like appearance can turn crystal items into an unsightly eyesore.  Various culprits can be the cause of the cloudy discoloration on the crystal surface. The most common cause is either a buildup of minerals caused by hard water or hot water reacting to high phosphate detergents in the dishwasher.  No matter what the cause, removal is your first priority. Fortunately, you can fix the discoloration with common and inexpensive household items. 

  1. Line the bottom of a clean sink with several lint-free towels. The cloths help protect the crystal from damage caused by the hard sink bottom.

  2. Fill the sink with equal parts lukewarm water and distilled white vinegar. Submerge the cloudy crystal in the mixture, and let it soak for 15 to 30 minutes.

  3. Wash the crystal with a lint-free cloth dampened in the vinegar-water mixture. Remove the drain plug, and let the liquid drain out of the sink.

  4. Rinse the crystal clean with cool, running water and wipe dry with a lint-free cloth.

  5. Fill the sink with pure white vinegar, and let the crystal soak for several hours if the cloudiness remains.

  6. Tip

    Add 1/2 cup of white vinegar to your dishwasher when washing crystal. The vinegar will help prevent future cloudiness while removing unpleasant odors.

About the Author

Amanda Flanigan began writing professionally in 2007. Flanigan has written for various publications, including WV Living and American Craft Council, and has published several eBooks on craft and garden-related subjects. Flanigan completed two writing courses at Pierpont Community and Technical College.