How to clean old glass bottles?

Christine F.
by Christine F.
I tried using vinegar and salt and tried washing in dishwasher. The opening of bottle is small so it’s hard to get a bottle brush in there to move around to clean it. Any ideas?
  7 answers
  • Carol Carol on Jun 21, 2018

    I would try vinegar, baking soda and warm water but do not fill to the top as this combination bubbles and foams big time. If that doesn't work I would place them in water bring it to a boil then reduce heat and let them simmer for as long as needed. To wipe them on the inside buy some large Q-tips or pipe cleaners. Hope one of these will help.

  • Sharon Sharon on Jun 21, 2018

    I would fill almost full and throw in a Polident denture cleaning tablet. Let it sit awhile.

  • Tammy Tammy on Jun 21, 2018

    I've heard rice will work but I've never tried it myself. If you soaked water and detergent then added rice and shook the bottle? Might be worth a shot !

  • Ginny Ginny on Jun 21, 2018

    There are very small brushes in the baby dept. at WalMart and other big box stores that might work for you. I have lots of old bottles that won't come clean but that is because of their age. It just ads ambiance to the bottle.

  • William William on Jun 21, 2018

    I have used crushed ice and salt to clean the inside. Just gently swish it around the inside of the bottle.

  • Swan Road Designs Swan Road Designs on Jul 08, 2018

    I've spent over 30 years in the antiques business, specializing in china, glass and silver. What you have is something known as "sick" glass, which is a condition that occurs when glass has spent some lengthy amount of time exposed to moisture, dirt, mud, etc. Many bottles and glass items that have been buried display this condition quite obviously. If you found your bottles in the ground in or around an old home place or such a location, they will continue to look as you show them in the photo.

    This results in a filmy, or cloudy, look to the glass. That's because the minerals in water and soil have, over time, etched the glass. It's essentially permanent.

    You can scrub, wash or use any manner of cleaning agents, but little will change.

    The only thing that even slightly can change the appearance of the glass is to wipe it or "rinse" it with mineral oil. The oil will mask some of the damage done to the glass.