How do I Clean Mildew From Silver Dollars?

Mildew is a black or white growth produced by molds. Molds and mildews need moisture and warmth to grow. While they commonly grow on cotton, linen, rayon, silk, wool, leather, wood and paper, they can grow on anything, including silver dollars and other coins. To prevent mold and mildew from growing on coins, do not place the coins in dark, damp places. Store them in sealed plastic bags. If a silver dollar gets mildewed, it can be cleaned easily although it may take a few attempts.

Lemon Juice

A silver dollar can be cleaned with lemon juice, vinegar or a cleaning eraser.
  1. Fill a small bowl or cup with enough lemon juice to submerge the coin.
  2. Submerge the silver dollar in the lemon juice.
  3. Allow the coin to soak for six to 24 hours. The more mildew present, or the thicker the layer of mildew, the longer the coin should soak. Do not allow the coin to soak for longer than 24 hours. Remove the coin.
  4. Brush any remaining mildew from the silver dollar.
  5. Rinse the coin in water to remove the lemon juice. Dry with a lint-free microfiber cloth.

Cleaning Eraser

  1. Dampen a cleaning eraser.
  2. Rub the eraser over the mildew. Continue rubbing, rinsing and dampening until the mildew is removed.
  3. Rinse the coin under running water to remove any residue. Dry the silver dollar with a lint-free microfiber cloth.


  1. Pour 1/4 cup of vinegar in a microwavable bowl or cup. Place in the microwave for 30 seconds, or until the vinegar is warm.
  2. Dip a tissue into the warm vinegar. Wipe the tissue onto the mildew on the silver dollar. Continue cleaning until the mildew is removed.
  3. Rinse the silver dollar under running water to remove all vinegar residue. Dry the coin with a lint-free microfiber cloth.

Things You Will Need

  • Bowl or cup
  • Lemon juice
  • Soft-bristled brush
  • Lint-free microfiber cloth.
  • Cleaning eraser
  • Vinegar

About the Author

Kallie Johnson began her writing career in 2009, contributing to various online publications. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in English from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. She enjoys writing home and garden topics and considers herself an expert on do-it-yourself home improvement topics.

Photo Credits

  • silver dollar image by Valentin Mosichev from Fotolia.com