To maintain the polished look of your silver-plated jewelry, some maintenance is required. Since silver-plated jewelry is just a surface coating, the plating can wear away over time to reveal the base metal. Thankfully, the plating can be reapplied to restore the original luster of your jewelry. To ensure that jewelry wear and tear doesn’t happen to you, here are some signs to look out for, as well as steps on how to repair silver-plated jewelry.
When To Repair Your Silver Plated Jewelry:
- The plating is beginning to wear off. You may start to see red brown metal where there used to be silver.
- The color of your jewelry has darkened or is starting to change color. The metal underneath the plating can react to the oils on your skin or oxidize and change color, darkening the silver plating.
The Silver Plating Process:
- The jeweler will inspect your piece of jewelry to determine the base metal. Any jewelry with a base metal of pewter or lead cannot be plated. Jewelry with a base metal of copper, brass, and most commercial alloys can be plated.
- Depending on the base metal, the plating process will require a different solution to suit the metal.
- If your piece of jewelry has a stone, it will be removed before beginning the plating process.
- First, the jeweler will use an abrasive to polish your jewelry to remove any plating that’s left.
- Second, the jeweler rinses your jewelry in multiple baths of distilled water to clean the metal and reduce the risk of contamination.
- Then the jewelry is submerged in a plating tank that holds a solution with rhodium or silver.
- An electric current runs through the tank, fusing the silver or rhodium particles to your jewelry.
If you need your silver-plated jewelry repaired, please contact us to begin the process.