We have used this method for years to clean silver and it works great. Run about a quart of hot water into your kitchen or bathroom sink (cool enough not to burn you). Dissolve 1 tablespoon of water softener (we bought Calgonite) (or laundry washing soda) and 1 tablespoon salt in the water. Place a sheet of aluminum foil on the bottom of the sink and place your tarnished silver on the foil (do not use this method if silver has been antiqued). The silver that's both touching the foil and is covered by the water should become clean within 10 seconds. If the piece is badly tarnished, rub it with a soft cloth after removing it from the water.
Another method I've heard is to mix some lemon juice and salt, dip a soft cloth in it and rub the silver with it. Rinse off with clean water and dry well. Good luck.
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