How to Keep Your Etched Nameplates from Deteriorating

BY Rowena Taylor

Etched Nameplates

Keeping etched nameplates, and even etched plaques and signs, looking as good as the day you got them is all a matter of proper maintenance. In order to keep these metal nameplates from deteriorating, and in effect helping you save money from needing to replace these constantly, you should always consider having a maintenance plan in place from the time you acquire these things. Having a good maintenance plan will indeed help you save money, as well as keep these plates looking good and useful to you and your business.

For you to be able to properly keep your etched metal items clean, presentable and useful, you will need to first know how to take care of the many different kinds of metals your nameplates are made of. There are proper ways to take care of such metals like brass and copper that cannot be used with stainless steel and aluminum, and vice versa. For instance, brass can turn black or discolor when you use too much polish on it. Aluminum and stainless steel can be safely polished constantly without this particular problem.

To help you out, here are some tips and tricks that you can use with your maintenance plans:

Preventing corrosion – while most metals used for the creation of etched nameplates are generally considered corrosion resistant, the only metal that is truly impervious to any type of corrosive deterioration is gold. This is why you need to take care of your metal nameplates since some type of corrosion will indeed hit these if not taken care of properly. Reasons for dull looking nameplates, or those that start to show flaky and powdery residue on the surface include humid and damp climes, contact with acidic substances such as leather and even human skin, dust and dirt, and exposure to materials that also produce acidic vapors like felt, some plastics and even some adhesives.

In order to prevent corrosion, keeping your metal nameplates away from these conditions and items may help. If this is impossible, you might want to keep your metal items clean with a careful wipe-down every day in order to remove these unwanted corrosion inducing factors. Try to keep people from handling these metals with their bare hands, wipe off dust and dirt daily to keep these from accumulating, and try to keep these etched metal items dry even in humid weather by removing any moisture you see with a dry, clean, and soft rag every so often.

Removing dirt and grime – even when you carefully keep your etched nameplates and other etched metal items clean, dirt and dust will sometimes find a way into the nooks and crannies that these objects have. To effectively remove these without scratching or damaging the surface of your metal nameplates, you will need to use care and some carefully chosen tools to get the dirt out. Some of the tools you might need to use include clean, soft rags, some alcohol and wooden cuticle sticks.

First, wipe off the surface with a rag that is dampened with alcohol. The alcohol will break down any oily substances, making it easier to remove any grimy dirt on your nameplates. With the same damp rag, clean out the grooves of your metal plates with the help of the wooden cuticle stick placed in the rag. Gouge out carefully the dirt in these cracks with this stick/damp rag combination. While alcohol will evaporate quickly, wiping off the surface of the plate with a dry rag will help remove any remaining dirt off it.

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