Home Decor: How Do I Clean My Windows Correctly

Home Decor: How Do I Clean My Windows Correctly?

In Domicile Blinds Tips by Connie Powell

Here’s how to get your windows sparkling clean and streak-free.

Full article with thanks to: housebeautiful.com/lifestyle/a37779321/how-to-wash-windows

Washing your windows may not be your favourite household chore, but it’s a huge payout for minimal effort—and it’s really not that difficult.

“Dust, pet dander, pollen and smoking residue all become aerosolized and stick to your windows, creating a dirty haze,” says Ken Fisk, director of technical services at Window Genie. “Try to clean your windows about twice a year. You can do them any time temperatures are above freezing, but don’t work when hot sun is beating directly on the glass or the cleaning solution can dry too fast and leave streaks.”

Ready to get started? Follow our simple step-by-step guide to get your windows cleaner than they’ve ever been:

Draw back any drapes and blinds.

It’s much easier to work if you pull curtains and blinds out of the way, says Fisk. It’s also the ideal time to wash your drapes and dust blinds. And if your windows have removable grids (those pieces that divide the window into individual panes), gently pop them out so you don’t have to clean around each tiny square, which is super-annoying and time-consuming. But be careful handling them, since UV light can make the grids brittle over time.

Mix up your window solution.

It’s fine to use a commercial window cleaning spray, but you can also make your own that’s just as effective—and much cheaper. Combine about 8 ounces of hot water with a drop or two of Dawn dish soap—which is great for cutting grease and grime, says Fisk—in a spray bottle. (Some people like to add a splash of vinegar, too, but it’s not necessary.)

Stock up on microfiber cloths.

Get a bunch of lint-free microfiber cloths. They come in various sizes, but go with ones that are at least 14 inches, so that they’re easy to handle. Old flannel rags are okay, too. Avoid using paper towels—which can leave fibers behind—and scrubby sponges that can scratch the window, says Fisk. When you wash the microfiber cloths after use, separate them from the rest of your laundry so they won’t pick up fuzz from other items. And don’t use fabric softener, which will decrease their absorbency.

Clean out the window ledge.

This area can get pretty gross. Open the window, spray cleaner on the ledge, and use a small scrub brush to clean all the dirt, dead bugs, and other debris from the nooks and crannies. Rinse with clean water (a second spray bottle filled with clean water works well).

Apply the cleaning solution.

Close the window and wet the window pane with your cleaning solution. Start with the top section first, so the solution doesn’t trickle down. Get the surface evenly wet, but not dripping. Use one of your microfiber cloths (folded into about a 6″ x 6″ section) to wipe off the solution. You can wipe in any direction or pattern you like, but as the cloth becomes saturated, flip it over and use a dry section. Use another cloth to wipe around the edges of the frame when you’re done.

Or try the squeegee method.

An alternate way of cleaning windows is to use a squeegee. There are many different squeegee techniques, but this one’s the simplest: Spray on the cleaning solution, then make a one-inch-wide swipe across the top of the window pane from left to right by tipping the squeegee so that only the corner makes contact with the glass. Pull all the way across, then wipe the blade with a cloth. Now, just below the frame, pull the squeegee steadily straight down and wipe the blade dry. Do the same maneuver again, with the squeegee overlapping the previous stroke about two inches (to help prevent streaking). When you’re done with all the glass, use a clean cloth to dry the window frame, says Fisk. You also can use a clean, dry microfiber cloth to buff out any streaks.

Tackle exteriors.

You can wash the exterior side of windows using the same techniques described above, but be sure to never lean a ladder directly against the glass—and skip it altogether if you’re nervous about climbing. Note that spray-on solutions you can use with your garden hose work okay, too, though they can leave streaks.

Hire an expert.

If you’d rather leave the job up to the professionals, you can always book a window-cleaning service. Just be sure to ask for their current certificate of insurance before they start, Fisk cautions. “Don’t just take their word that they’re insured!”

Full article with thanks to: housebeautiful.com/lifestyle/a37779321/how-to-wash-windows

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