Asked on Jan 29, 2016

Cleaning old aluminum pots/pans set

by Lynn
I have my mother's Wearever aluminum pots/pans set she received when she married. This April they will be 68 years old. It is the best set that I have ever seen. I use them every day. They really need a good cleaning, inside and out. Any ideas besides the powered or liquid cleaners? Thanks for your help!!
  19 answers
  • Janet Pizaro Janet Pizaro on Jan 29, 2016
    You can try equal parts of white vinegar and water bring to a boil for about 30 minutes or so. This will help removing the residue.You can also try baking soda and water and mix into a paste leaving on the pots long enough to loosen all the grime.
  • Frances Toth Frances Toth on Jan 29, 2016
    I was going to ay the same thing as Janet Pizaro. Baking soda and water make a past and leave on either overnight or for a couple of hours. Good luck. Let us know how they turn out. Before after pictures would be great.
  • Linda Linda on Jan 29, 2016
    You can also try 2 tbs of cream of tartar with the vinegar. Bring it to a boil until the aluminum brightens, then let it cool in your pot/pan. For the bottoms, are they aluminum or copper (my mom's Wearever pot/pans are copper bottom). If they are aluminum, I'd try the hot solution as it's cooling, but Reader's Digest says any acidic solution (lemon juice?).
    • Lynn Lynn on Jan 29, 2016
      @Linda thanks, linda. they do not have any copper on the bottoms. i will try this.
  • Lee Govan Lee Govan on Jan 29, 2016
    I use cuttle fish skeletons, I use a screw driver to take off the outer shell. it will work the same as baking soda, it will not scratch. Plenty of elbow grease though. If you nowhere near a beach you can get them from pet shop suppliers, the are sold for cockatiels (birds) to manicure their beaks. 2 - 3 of the will do the trick, they are also great for cleaning off any baked on and hard to remove residue left on pots, pans, baking trays, cleaning the oven and any stainless steel. I haven't used a cleaning product on any of the above for decades, asn as I live near the coast, I collect them in winter for free.
    • Lynn Lynn on Jan 29, 2016
      @Lee Govan thank you from the states. i had birds and they always had the cuddle bones in their cages. never though to use them for cleaning. great idea.
  • Wanda.ll Wanda.ll on Jan 30, 2016
    Are you sure you want to still use them? I know you have and your parents have but.I'm throwing this out there. Aluminum isn't great for you. We get to much everywhere, They are now concerned about it causing all kinds of problems like dementia. and more.
  • Susan Susan on Jan 30, 2016
    I'm with Wanda regarding medical community concerns with aluminum cookware with one proviso. It's fine provided you never leave edible food in an aluminum pan (like to store in fridge). Aluminum can leach into your food. And don't use for acidic food, like tomato sauce or spaghetti sauce. That too will cause leaching.
  • Lynn Lynn on Jan 30, 2016
    thanks wanda and susan. i HAVE heard things like this and it really doesn't bother me. i use cast iron as well. i also have my grandmother's wooden cutting board, that she used and my mom used. you just have to be careful.
  • LD LD on Jan 30, 2016
    Here are a couple of websites that address your question regarding cleaning of aluminum cookware. [], []
  • Ozzydragon Ozzydragon on Jan 30, 2016
    I use a yellow laundry soap (Velvet/Sunlight in Australia) with plain steel wool (the soft stuff) and and bit of scrubbing later they shine like stainless steel.
  • MN Mom MN Mom on Jan 30, 2016
    I've had the same set of Club aluminum pots and pans for the past 30 years. If you read enough online you'll discover something adverse connected to everything. If Lynn wants help, let's help her.
  • Lyn2398900 Lyn2398900 on Jan 30, 2016
    Put some cream of tartar in the pan with boiling water. Boil for awhile and see the difference! You figure out how much to put in. A couple tablespoons? Works like a charm.
  • Dottie Weirich Dottie Weirich on Jan 31, 2016
    This is the number for the only place you can buy Astonish oven & pans cleaner 1-800-527-8811 It is all natural, made in Canada! You'll never regret ordering it! It cleans anything!
  • Lynn Lynn on Jan 31, 2016
    thanks everyone!! i think these answers will help. must get cleaning!!!
  • Vickie Vickie on Dec 08, 2020

    Add water, vinegar, and whole lemon sliced up to your pot and heat it until boiling. Let it continue on the heat for up to twenty minutes. This will do wonders for your pots and pans and the best part is that the ingredients are all natural.

  • Redcatcec Redcatcec on Apr 03, 2024

    Here you go:

  • Dee Dee on Apr 03, 2024

    I would use scratch free Brillo or Sos.

  • Deb K Deb K on Apr 06, 2024

    Hi Lynn, hope this helps you. Make a paste with baking soda and water and clean the stained areas with a soft-bristle brush. Once the pan is clean, thoroughly rinse it with warm water. Use a kitchen towel or allow it to air dry on a dish rack. It needs to be completely dry before you store it. Or try this cleaner Astonish

  • Betsy Betsy on Apr 06, 2024

    Hi Lynn: Check these sites for some help, if you haven't tried Bar Keepers Friend, that is :) How to Clean Aluminum Baking Pans with Bar Keepers Friend You can buy Bar Keepers Friend cheaper at Home Depot, than at the grocery store.

    The Best Way To Clean Your Aluminum Pans (

    How to Clean Aluminum Baking Sheets - The Kitchen Professor

  • Johnavallance82 Johnavallance82 on Apr 07, 2024

    These should not be used for food anymore as they are not recommended anymore.