Opening and Cleaning a Stuck Decanter

by Doris Donnerman
(last updated July 11, 2016)

1

Decanters are used for all sorts of liquids, such as perfume or liquors. It is not unusual for older decanters to have their stoppers become stuck, and they can seem impossible to unstick. This can be frustrating if you want to open the decanter so that you can clean out whatever old stuff is within it.

Don't despair; there are several things you can try to get the stopper unstuck from the decanter. First, try getting a hot, wet cloth. Grab a washcloth or a kitchen towel, and immerse it in very hot water. Wring the water out of the cloth and wrap it carefully around the neck of the bottle. This causes the decanter, but not the stopper, to expanded a bit from the heat. This may be just enough to free up the stopper. (You may have to wait a few moments for the heat to transfer to the decanter.)

If that doesn't quite work, then with the hot cloth still wrapped around the neck of the decanter, allow a few drops of hot water to trickle into the neck of the decanter and around the stopper. (This will obviously only work if the stopper is recessed slightly into the neck of the decanter.) This hot water may help to loosen or dissolve whatever "gunk" is holding the stopper immobile.

Try, as well, removing the hot cloth and tapping gently around the neck of the decanter with a wooden spoon. Don't use a metal spoon, as this may damage the glass of the decanter. The tapping will help to loosen up anything that may be holding the stopper in place.

Finally, you might try pouring a bit of olive oil around the stopper in the neck of the decanter and letting it set for a few moments. (Ten minutes or so should do fine.) The oil acts as a solvent to loosen or dissolve whatever the water couldn't dissolve. As you are waiting for the olive oil to do its magic, leave the decanter in a warm place. The warmth will help with the loosening, as well.

Once the stopper is worked out of the decanter, you can then clean it. Stains and deposits at the bottom of the decanter can be removed by half-filling the decanter with warm, soapy water and adding two tablespoons of uncooked rice. Swirl the mixture around several times over a period of thirty minutes. The rice acts as an abrasive, knocking residue loose as you swirl the mixture.

After the thirty minutes, pour the mixture out and rinse the decanter in clean, warm water. If there is still some residue to remove, repeat the water-and-rice mixture a few more times. (Each time should get out a bit more of the residue.) When the decanter is finally clean and rinsed, place it upside-down in the dish drainer to dry out.

Author Bio

Doris Donnerman

Doris is a jack of all trades, writing on a variety of topics. Her articles have helped enlighten and entertain thousands over the years. ...

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What is one less than 3?

2016-07-11 13:09:39

Petra

Best way to clean inside of decanter is to soak in strong ammonia solution for a day or so, then add rice to flush out any particles remaining.


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