Do you hate cleaning windows? If you do, you aren’t alone. While washing your windows isn’t fun, most people hate it because they are doing it wrong. We look at the biggest mistakes to avoid when cleaning your windows. Plus we offer tips for how to clean your windows inside and out.
6 Mistakes To Avoid When Cleaning Your Windows
Cleaning All of Your Windows at Once
One of the biggest mistakes is cleaning all of your windows at once. Even if you have the best of intentions, most people get worn out by the second or third room.
Since you might only clean them a few times a year, it’s better to break them up. Not only does this mean less of a time commitment, but you can also do a more thorough job in each room.
Cleaning Windows on a Sunny Day
Another common mistake is cleaning your windows on a bright and sunny day. While this may seem like a great idea, the sun warms your windows and makes them dry faster.
Instead, clean your windows on an overcast day. As long as it cools down outside, you can wash them in the evening. This will make them easier to clean and limit dirty streaks on the glass.
Not Using Enough Cleaner
Not using enough cleaner is a huge mistake. Without enough cleaner, you need to work much harder to clean the window. If you are worried about the cost of glass cleaners, you can make your own for just pennies.
Combine two cups of water with half a cup of vinegar and a quarter cup of rubbing alcohol in a spray bottle. Then swirl the bottle to mix them. Not only is it cheap, but it’ll last forever and is just as effective as the store-bought stuff.
Spraying Cleaner on Top of Dust
You might not think about it, but dust on your windows makes cleaning them even harder. The dust and cleaner make a grimy paste that means more work.
Save yourself some trouble and deal with the dust first. While you can use a dusting rag, the dust attachment on your vacuum is much faster.
Wiping Them With the Wrong Towel
Regular cotton towels and most paper towels will leave annoying lint behind. Even if they don’t fuzz, they will usually leave streaks that are just as bad.
Newspaper is one way to get a crystal clear finish on your windows, but they aren’t as common as they once were. Instead, get an inexpensive micro-fiber cloth. They are machine washable and will last you basically forever.
Using a Squeegee on the Windows
A lot of homeowners think a squeegee is the secret to cleaning windows. While it’s really helpful outside, it can make quite a mess inside. It’ll pull all the cleaner off the window and make it drip on the window sill or the floor. If you do use a squeegee, put a layer of towels down on the window sill first to soak up the cleaner.
Tips for Cleaning the Inside of Your Windows Without Streaks
It’s up to you how often you clean your windows. However, windows are easier and faster to clean if you do it more often. Here are some great tips that will make getting a streak-free clean easier.
- Clean only one room of windows at a time.
- Vacuum up the dust on the window frame and glass first.
- Wash the window frame and the glass separately.
- Use liquid dish soap and cool water to clean the frame.
- Dip a towel in the soapy water, wring it out, then scrub the frames.
- Then wipe the frames dry with a separate dry towel.
- For the glass, spray on a generous amount of glass cleaner.
- Only use a microfiber cloth on the glass for a streak-free clean.
- Wipe your windows from top to bottom to clean dirt and grime.
- For a crystal clear finish, spray and wipe them again.
How To Clean Windows on the Outside
Most people overlook the outside of their windows. No matter how often you clean the insides, your windows will look dirty unless you clean the outsides too. It’s up to you how often you clean them, but we recommend cleaning the outside about half as often as the insides.
- Start by closing and locking your windows, then remove the screens.
- Rinse your windows with a hose to loosen the dirt stuck to the glass and the frame.
- To clean away the dirt and grime, add a few drops of liquid dish soap to a bucket of cool water
- Then clean the windows with soapy water and a soft microfiber cloth.
- For higher windows, it’s safer to use a telescoping sponge mop instead of getting up on a ladder.
- Rise the outside of the windows with the hose to clean away the dirt and soap.
- For a perfect finish, spray the glass down with a generous amount of glass cleaner.
- Then wipe the window dry using a clean, rubber-bladed squeegee.
- Start at the top of each window and make a smooth downward motion.
- Clean the blade with a towel in between each pass.
- If you have stubborn stains like bird droppings, spray them thoroughly with glass cleaner and let them sit for a few minutes.
- To clean your window screens, rinse them with the hose.
- Then spray them with the vinegar solution.
- Wipe them with a clean towel and then put them in the sun to dry completely.
- Once the screens are dry, you can put them back on your windows.