How to Clean Jigsaw Puzzle Pieces the Right Way

Jigsaw puzzles are a great way to pass the time, but what do you do once you're done with them? If you're like most people, you probably just throw the pieces back into the box and forget about them until the next time you want to do a puzzle. However, jigsaw puzzle pieces are quite delicate, and they can get damaged if you don't care for them properly. With some elbow grease and some common household supplies, you can easily clean your puzzle pieces and make them look new again.

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The Importance Of Keeping Your Puzzle Pieces Clean

While it may not seem like a big deal, the reality is that keeping your puzzle pieces clean is important for several reasons. First, it ensures you'll be able to enjoy your puzzle for years to come without worrying about the pieces deteriorating. Second, it prevents the spread of germs and bacteria—after all, your hands aren't the only things that have been touching those pieces! Finally, it keeps the puzzle looking nice, so you can be proud to display it in your home. 

How to Clean Jigsaw Puzzle Pieces

Step One: Gather Your Supplies

Before you start cleaning your jigsaw puzzle pieces, you'll need to gather some supplies. You'll need a soft cloth, a warm water bowl, and mild dish soap. Once you have everything you need, you're ready to move on to the next step.

Step Two: Lightly Dampen the Cloth

Dip the cloth into the bowl of warm water and mild dish soap. Be sure to wring out the cloth, so it's only lightly damp. You don't want the wet cloth, as this could damage the puzzle pieces.

Step Three: Wipe Down Each Piece

Gently wipe each puzzle piece with a damp cloth. Be sure to pay special attention to any areas that look particularly dirty.

Step Four: Let the Pieces Air Dry Completely 

Once all of the pieces are washed, it's time to let them air dry. Spread a towel or sheet on a flat surface and place the pieces on top so they can dry completely. This may take a few hours, so be patient!

Step Five: Repeat If Necessary

If your puzzle pieces look dull, you can repeat steps two through four until they're as clean as you'd like them to be.

Step Six: Put Them Away Safely 

Now that your jigsaw puzzle pieces are clean and dry, it's time to put them away until next time. If you have a box or container they originally came in, that's ideal. Otherwise, any resealable plastic bag will do. Just be sure not to put too many pieces in one bag—you don't want them bent or damaged. And that's it! Now you know how to properly clean your jigsaw puzzle pieces so they'll be ready next time. 

Do's And Don'ts In Cleaning Jigsaw Puzzle Pieces

DO: Use a soft brush or cloth to avoid scratching the pieces.

DON'T: Soak your puzzle pieces in water. This will cause the wood to warp and make your puzzle pieces unusable. If you must wash your pieces, use a damp cloth instead of submerging them in water.

DO: Store your puzzle pieces in a zip-top baggie or an airtight container. This will protect them from dust and moisture and keep them from getting lost. Be sure to label the bag or container, so you know which puzzle it goes with!

DON'T: Dry under direct sunlight! The heat from the sun can cause puzzle pieces to warp.

DO: Take your time! If a piece is particularly dirty, you may need to scrub it a bit to remove all the grime. Just be gentle, so you don't damage the piece.

DON'T: Use harsh chemicals or cleaners on your puzzle pieces. Stick to mild soap and water to avoid damaging the piece.

How To Keep Your Jigsaw Puzzle Pieces Clean

Dust Them Off Regularly

One of the best ways to keep your jigsaw puzzle pieces clean is to dust them off regularly. This will prevent them from becoming coated in a layer of dust, making them difficult to see and work with. A soft, dry cloth is all you need; simply wipe down the pieces whenever you notice they're starting to get dusty.

Avoid Food and Drink Nearby

It's best to avoid eating or drinking while working on a jigsaw puzzle, as spills can be hard to clean up and may damage the pieces. If you must have something to drink while working on your puzzle, use a straw or drink from a cup with a lid to minimize the risk of spillage. And if you do happen to spill something, act quickly! Blot the area with a clean, dry cloth before the liquid has a chance to seep into the puzzle pieces and make them difficult to work with.

Keep Them Out of Direct Sunlight 

Excessive heat can cause jigsaw puzzle pieces to warp, making them difficult or even impossible to fit together. To avoid this, keep your puzzle away from windows or other sources of direct sunlight when you're not working on it. If you're taking a break for an extended period, consider storing your puzzle in enclosed spaces such as boxes or cabinets. 

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