Proper maintenance is essential to keeping your trumpet in top condition. Here's some handy tips to make sure that it stays in the best playing condition possible!
In order to avoid frozen slides and valves: it is recommended that a soapy water bathtub flush be done once per month. The procedure is easy: Fill your bathtub with warm, NOT HOT, water and a little dishwashing soap. Completely disassemble the instrument removing all slides, valves, bottom and top caps, and finger buttons, and allow all the parts to soak for a half hour. Drain the soapy water and use a trumpet snake to clean the inside of the tubes. The snake should pass through the tubing of all slides, valve ports, bell, and lead pipe. Next, scrub the valves. If the valves are still dirty, soak them in vinegar for an hour. Finally, thoroughly rinse out all parts with warm water and place on a towel to dry. Before re-assembly, all slides should be greased with slide grease, and valves should be oiled with valve oil.
Oiling the valves is not enough: to maintain them in good playing condition. Once per week a trumpet valve casing cleaning rod should be used to clean the inside of the valve casing. To clean the casings, remove the valves, top caps, and bottom caps. Thread a rag through the slit in the cleaning rod and soak the rag with valve oil. Valve oil works as a good solvent. The rod should be worked up and down in the casing until all the debris is removed. This will prevent the build-up of corrosion.
Do not store anything other than the mouthpiece and instrument inside the case. Items such as books, music, mutes, music stands, and metronomes belong in a separate bag.
Liquid polishes: can be used on silver plated trumpets. Furniture polish works well on lacquered instruments.
Instrument care kits are available at West Music.