There are few things more satisfying than seeing that bright sun shining into your home through clean, streak-free windows. All of that natural light brightens your home, brightens your mood, and makes your house feel open and clean. However, if they are dirty, those golden rays will make them look worse and highlight the dirt to everyone in the house. Cleaning windows is usually the least favorite house cleaning task of most people, but it doesn’t have to be. Here is a breakdown of how to clean those windows (both inside and out) to make your house shine!
Clean Windows: Tools Needed
You’ll need a few tools on hand to get them sparkling. Before you start cleaning, gather up the items that you’ll need.
- Glass cleaner or Home mixture of Vinegar and Water
- Medium to Large Size Bucket
- Dish Soap
- Bath Towel
- Microfiber cloth or sponge
- Paper Towels or Newspaper
- Rubber Bladed Squeegee
- For the Outside—Water Hose, Mop or Ladder
Inside Window Cleaning
The insides of your windows are fairly easy to clean. Try to pick a house cleaning day that is cool and cloudy so that the soapy water and window spray do not dry on the glass before you can finish.
First, you will fill your bucket with clean, cool water and add a few drops of your liquid dish soap. In order to catch any spills, spread out your large bath towel beneath the windows. Take your microfiber cloth (or sponge if you prefer), dip it in the soapy water and start scrubbing. The most efficient way to clean is to start at the top and work your way down to the bottom. You’ll need frequent dips back in the bucket to keep your cloth or sponge clean and wet. Don’t worry about streaks that show up on your window at this stage. We’ll get them in the next step. Before you put away your bucket, ensure you’ve wiped down the window frame as well.
Next, take your window cleaning spray (commercial or homemade) and spray the the glass thoroughly with the solution. It is better to have too much than too little. If you don’t get enough spray on the glass, you will have streaks show up. Take your clean (and lint free) paper towel and dry the window using a “Z-shaped” motion. Instead of paper towels, you can use pages of a newspaper! Choose only pages that are black and white. The colored pictures will leave ink on the glass. If dirt or streaks remain, spray and dry again. Dirty windows typically require two rounds of spraying and drying.
Outside Window Cleaning
The outsides of your windows will likely have more dirt and stains than the inside. Again try to pick a day to attack this house cleaning task that is cool and cloudy. Not only will your cleaning be easier, but you will stay more comfortable as well.
Start with the water hose. Rinse the windows with a little bit of pressure to attempt to get as much of the dirt and grime off as possible. Fill your bucket with cool clean water and add a bit of the liquid dish soap (similar to what you did for the inside). Using your soft microfiber cloth or sponge, scrub the surface of the window. If the window is high or tall, you may need to get a mop or use a ladder. Always take every safety precaution if you have to stand on a ladder.
Rinse thoroughly with the water hose. Hopefully the majority of the dirt and grime is now gone. Spray (or mop) with the window cleaning spray until sufficiently damp. Wipe the window using your rubber-bladed squeegee. Make sure it is clean and dry before beginning. Angle the squeegee aiming towards the bottom of the window and again work from top to bottom. Using this methodology will ensure you don’t repeat work. You can always use paper towels or newspaper if you don’t have a squeegee. If you have a stubborn stain (like bird droppings), saturate the stain with your window spray and let stand several minutes before washing and drying. You might need to purchase a heavy duty commercial cleaner that is specially designed to remove minerals such as calcium, lime, and rust if you have mineral deposits on your windows.
Finish with a Rinse
Lastly, take your window screens and rinse with the water hose. Spray them with your window spray, let them sit for a minute or two, and rinse again. If you can, let them dry completely before reinstalling on the window.
Now stand back and enjoy the view through your clean windows!