Jay Shri Ram everybody,

Can anybody please suggest what solutions should we use to clean PanchDhaatu structures as shown below. One option is to use Pitaambari powder but that takes a lot of time and after few days, the structure again shows black patches. Is there some sort of transparent cover available that can be applied (similar to that applied on cars)?

enter image description here

  • applying imli/ lemon makes it very shiny and in our home that it used Commented Jul 3, 2022 at 16:05
  • I also use lemon/pitaambari powder to clean Deities idols at home.. but in the temple, I was thinking if there was a better alternative...
    – VAT
    Commented Jul 3, 2022 at 18:35
  • 2
    Please don't use Pitambari on idols. Vigrahas have prana and you shouldn't wash them with pitambari ever. Instead use sour things like Curd, panchamrit as they are acidic. The best option is to use Honey. You can use honey for your Panchdhatu temple too. It cleans the surface the best being viscous and acidic. Also, wipe out the surface of temple once you have washed it. It will delay the corrosion spots as you see. Commented Jul 3, 2022 at 19:58
  • No Sir.. I am not talking about using Pitaambari on Vigrahas.. it is about cleaning the panchdhaatu structure as shown in the screenshot...
    – VAT
    Commented Jul 4, 2022 at 4:52

1 Answer 1


For purifying metals and any objects made with them, Manu Smriti recommends the use of water, ash, mud, acids etc. See the following verses:

5.111. The wise ordain that all (objects) made of metal, gems, and anything made of stone are to be cleansed with ashes, earth, and water.

5.112. A golden vessel which shows no stains, becomes pure with water alone, likewise what is produced in water (as shells and coral), what is made of stone, and a silver (vessel) not enchased.

5.113. From the union of water and fire arose the glittering gold and silver; those two, therefore, are best purified by (the elements) from which they sprang.

5.114. Copper, iron, brass, pewter, tin, and lead must be cleansed, as may be suitable (for each particular case), by alkaline (substances), acids or water.

Parashara Smriti 6.30 recommends the same:

  1. Copper or bell-metal vessels become purified, by rubbing with ashes ; washing in water makes all clothing clean ; an earthen pot is clean by abandonment.

And, from this page, we get what various other scriptures have to say on the topic:

Gautama (1.29-31).—‘As regards the purification of things, objects made of metal must be scoured, those of clay should be thoroughly heated by fire, those of wood must be planed and those of yarns should be washed.—Objects made of stone, jewels, shells or mother-o’pearl must be treated like metallic objects.’

Baudhāyana (1.8.32, 46, 47).—‘Defiled objects made of metal must be scoured with cow-dung, earth and ashes, or with one of these:—conch-shells, horn, pearl-shells, and ivory with a paste of yellow mustard; or they may be cleaned with milk.’

Bo. (1.14.45).—‘Vessels made of metal must be washed, after having been scrubbed; the materials to be used for scrubbing arc cow-dung, earth, ashes and the like.’

Āpastamba (1.17.11).—‘A vessel made of metal becomes pure by being scoured with ashes and the like.’

Vaśiṣṭha (3.49-51).—‘Objects made of metal must be scoured with ashes; those made of clay should be thoroughly heated by fire; those of wood should be planed, and those of yarns should be washed. Stones and gems should be treated like objects made of metal; conch-shells and pearl-shells like gems.’

Yājñavalkya (1.182, 183).—‘Of vessels and cups made of gold, silver, conch-shell, of stones, vegetables, ropes, roots, fruits, cloth, bamboo, and leather—as also of other vessels of wood, etc.,—purification is accomplished by means of water.’

Devala (Aparārka, p. 254).—‘Vessels not touched by liquids are purified by water; those touched by liquids are regarded as purified only when they are free from fatty stains and odour.’

Hārīta (Aparārka, p. 254).—‘Gold, silver, conch-shells and pearl-shells are purified by water; if these are defiled to the extent of being discoloured and losing their properties, then they should be cleaned with the flour of barley, wheat, beans, lentils and cow-dung; copper-vessels are cleansed by acids and salts; vessels of Kāṃsya by ashes; iron-vessels by being scrubbed with stone, oil and sand; vessels made of gems are cleansed by scrubbing with stone and washing.’

Āpastamba (Do.).—‘Vessels of kāṃsya are cleansed by the ten alkalies.’

Śaṅkha (Do.).—‘A kāṃsya -vessel should not be heated; it becomes purified by being washed twenty-one times. Vessels of Kāṃsya, lead and zinc are purified by hot water. Kāṃsya and iron are cleansed by alkalies; iron-vessels are purified by heating, also by ashes and cow-dung. Vessels made of stone are cleansed by heating, scrubbing and also by water; those of wood, by planing; also by earth, cow-dung and water.’

Uśanas (Do., p. 255).—‘Vessels of gold, silver, copper, lead, zinc and kāṃsya are cleansed by water mixed with ashes; those of metals in general, if defiled, are cleansed by washing with ashes three times. Gold, gems, silver, conch-shells, pearl-shells and stones, as also diamonds, bamboo, ropes and leather, are purified by water. Vessels of clay and weapons are heated for purification.’

Kāśyapa (Do.).—‘Ivory, horn, conch-shell, pearl-shell and gems are cleansed by sand.’

Yama (Do.).—‘Silver, gold, copper, lead, iron, Kāṃsya and zinc are purified by ashes.’

Ṛṣyaśṛṅga (Do.).—‘Pearls and corals are purified by washing; also vessels made of conch and other shells, and also of all kinds of stone.’

Viṣṇu (Do.).—‘Things made of copper, lead or zinc are purified by acid and water;—all things made of metal are cleansed by being washed with ashes and water twenty-one times.’

Smṛtyantara (Aparārka, p. 255).—‘Vessels of kāṃsya are cleansed by ashes, if they have not been touched with wine; if so touched, they can be cleansed only by heating and scrubbing; copper is cleansed by acids if it has not been touched with flesh; if so touched, it can he cleansed only by being heated over again.’

Ādipurāṇa (Do., p. 256).—‘Things made of gold, silver, conch-shells, shells and gems,—also those made of kāṃsya, iron, copper, lead and zinc,—if they are not smeared,—become cleansed with simple water.’

Śātātapa (Do.)—‘Gold, silver, copper, lead, iron and zinc are cleansed by being scrubbed with stone,’

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