As time goes on, your windows get dirtier from pollution and grime, inside and out. Dust blocks your views and cuts off precious sunlight. Even worse are the thick streaks left behind by improper cleaning! Follow these expert cleaning tips to keep your windows clean and streak-free (and make your light-loving houseplants happy).
Choose the Right Time
Windows that are clean and streak-free can be challenging to come by, especially on days with direct sunlight. The sun’s rays can cause the cleaning solution to dry and evaporate before you can wash it away properly, resulting in streaks that are tough to remove. On cloudy days, there is less glare from the sun, making it easier to spot streaks.
Remove the Dust
- Start cleaning the frames, tracks, and sills to avoid spreading even more dirt on your windows. You can do this by using a vacuum cleaner, duster or cloth.
- Cleaning your windows is an excellent moment to remove and wash your curtains. The same is valid for your blinds or shades. If you want to know how to make your home look more expensive by choosing the right curtains, we’ve got you covered!
- If you have window screens, it’s good to remove and clean them too. A vacuum or brush is the best way to remove dust from your screens. Wash your screen with a warm, sudsy mix for a deeper clean, then rinse and dry completely.
Take the Right Equipment
- Cleaning solution
- Microfiber cloth
- Sturdy ladder
- Scraper blade
Cleaning Joinery, Frames and Tracks
Before you start cleaning your windows, it’s important to clean the tracks and frames. Over time, dirt and grime can accumulate in these areas, making window cleaning more difficult. To remove the dirt, you can do the following:
- Use a vacuum cleaner, duster or cloth;
- If the dirt is not coming out, use an old toothbrush and a mixture of baking soda and vinegar.
- Scrub inside the tracks, then wipe away any remaining residue with a damp cloth.
Remember to clean the window sills, too!
PVC joinery should be cleaned with liquid non-abrasive detergents made for cleaning plastic.
If you have varnished or oil-painted wooden frames, then you should pay attention to the composition of the cleaning product. It should not contain acid or solvent that could damage the coating. Baking soda is not recommended either because it makes the paint yellow and cracks the wood. You must choose detergents created especially for wooden surfaces. They will clean the treated material in depth because they are based on natural soap and beeswax, which creates a protective layer.
Make Your Cleaning Solution
If you want to reduce the usage of commercial chemicals in your home, you can try this cleaning solution that’s all made from products you keep in your kitchen.
- 1/4 cup of white vinegar;
- 1 cup of water;
- Three drops of dish soap;
- Spray bottle;
Take the Right Tools
- The easiest way to clean your windows is by using a microfiber cloth. Unlike kitchen paper or a rug, microfiber cloth will help you collect dust and dirt without leaving anything behind. Another way you can clean your windows is by using a mop. However, sometimes the dirt isn’t coming off as easily as you’d like. In this case, use the scraper blade in a forward motion (not backward) to remove the dirt.
Note: When it comes to getting rid of tough, caked-on dirt and grime, few things are as effective as a good scraper. For window-cleaning sessions, we recommend using a three-inch scraper with replaceable blades. Just be careful not to scratch the surface in the process.
- Microfibre towels – You will need three pieces: one to apply the cleaning solution, another to remove the dirt, and a third for the final polishing. The advantage of fabric made of microfibre is that it perfectly absorbs moisture and greatly eases cleaning. Suede and silk fabrics are recommended for the final glaze.
- Window Squeegee/ Wiper – A very convenient device. It’s equipped with a sponge on one side and a rubber band on the other. With a little training, you can achieve brilliant results. The basic rules for operating it are:
- Wash the windows with the sponge;
- Take off the dirt with vertical movements of the wiper;
- Then, with horizontal movements, clean and dry glass.
- Work from the top to the bottom of the window.
When you are ready, you can use a dry microfibre cloth for polishing. Wiping with a microfibre cloth will remove even the thinnest lines and drops of water.
How to clean your windows the right way?
With all these tips now, you are ready to start, and here is our step-by-step guide:
- Remove window blinds, curtains or screens;
- Remove the dust from the window frame, track and sills;
- Take the bottle with your homemade cleaning solution and spray a generous amount;
- Take the microfiber cloth and wipe the window from top to bottom.
- The best way to clean windows depends on the size and number of panes.
- For small windows with multiple panes, use a microfiber cloth.
- For large picture windows, use a squeegee.
- Wet your cloth in the cleaning solution, and wring it out to remove any excess water. Wipe the window from top to bottom, and don’t forget the corners.
- Using the rubber-bladed squeegee, start from the top of the window and work horizontally without tilting. After each stroke, dry the blade with a clean cloth.
- Attach the squeegee to an extension pole or broom handle to clean high outside windows without a ladder.
- Wipe away the water – For small-paned windows, make vertical strokes with the rubber blade, starting from the top and working down. For a picture window, use horizontal strokes. Make sure to overlap each stroke by a couple of inches, and clean the blade with a lint-free cloth between each stroke
- To save time while the inner side of the window is drying, clean the outside.
- Choose the right time to clean your windows;
- Prepare all the tools you need before you start.
- Taking your time to clean the dust will help you get better results.
- A microfiber cloth and squeegee will help you get the strike-free results you are dreaming of.
- Getting your windows cleaned will not only improve the look of your home and let you enjoy your beautiful view but can even improve your home’s Feng Shui.