When to Use Copper Lacquer

Red copper pipe.

Copper lacquer is a protective covering applied to copper materials to prevent tarnishing and corrosion. When copper products are coated with copper lacquer, they become shiny and become more resistant to the damaging effects of external elements. However, copper lacquer should not be used in some instances.

Use on Materials That Do Not Involve Food or Water

Copper lacquer is a good way to protect any copper material from damage. Use it only to coat materials that are not used for food or water. Since the chemicals used to manufacture the product may cause health hazards, use it only for copper products like jewelry, sculptures, and decorative materials. Copper usually turns green when it does not have a lacquer coating so make sure to coat the product to prevent blemishes.

Use it on Copper Pipes Used in Basements

If the copper pipe is exposed to high degrees of moisture, like when it is used inside a basement, coat it with lacquer. Humidity inside a basement exposes copper to moist air. If the copper pipe is not protected with any type of coating, it will definitely turn a bluish-green color. This phenomenon is caused by the oxidation of the copper atoms. It is also a natural phenomenon that serves as copper’s first line of defense against corrosion. Copper corrodes when it is exposed to humidity and therefore requires a protective coating to ensure it does not get damaged.

Use it for Copper Pipes found Outside the Home

Copper pipes found outside the home or a building are likely to be tarnished or corroded by the effects of external forces such as freezing, acid rain, humid air, and extreme heat. These forces will definitely harm the copper material and cause it to corrode.

Use it When the Copper Item Always Turns Green

When a copper item usually turns green, it is a sign that it is affected by factors that cause copper oxidation. Even decorative items that sit on shelves or cabinets do turn green when they are exposed to oxidizing elements. Make sure to clean the item first before applying a coat of lacquer. It should be free from oil and other stains in order for the lacquer to effectively coat the item.

Use it on Knobs

Door knobs, drawer pulls and other useful copper products sometimes get nasty when they turn into a different color. Since these knobs or pulls usually get in contact with human hands, it is best to coat them with copper lacquer. When these products get wet, they change in color very fast, especially when they are used in moist areas like the bathroom or the kitchen. Clean these knobs and pulls thoroughly with soapy water to remove oil and debris before applying lacquer.