Cleaning the windows of your home is paramount in keeping it clean and looking great. When windows are neglected and left murky, spotted, and streaked it matters not what the rest of your home looks like nor how clean it is. The trouble is that most homeowners either don’t want to spend their free time cleaning windows and those that do rarely, if ever, possess the tools needed to do the job both thoroughly and quickly.
For those of you who elect the do-it-yourself approach the following six tips will help you save money, time, and plenty of head and back aches.
Gathering Your Tools
Professional window cleaners arrive on site with a plethora of expensive and effective tools. These tools allow them to not only make your windows shine with a new-like resplendence but to finish the job very quickly as well. While no one expects you to be in possession of the same tools the pros do, you’ll want to have high quality items ready for work before you begin.
You’ll need protective gloves to shield your hands against water, dirt, debris, and cleaning solutions. Additionally, a strong yet soft bristled brush is a must for removing obstinate debris from your windows. It would be foolhardy to forget a soft sponge, lint and dye free cloths, a bucket and spray bottle, or a squeegee. Before you begin work you’ll also want some hot water and white vinegar on hand.
Eyes On The Sky
While it can be tempting to clean your home’s windows on a whim, you and your windows are better served by a bit of planning and patience. The internet and mobile devices make checking the weather a cinch and it behooves you to plan your project around the whims of nature. Don’t simply wait for one or two good days in the forecast to begin cleaning, instead look for a good stretch of fair weather. Doing so will ensure that your work isn’t sullied by inclement weather and will save you from having to redo the work.
Removing Loose Debris
Dry cleaning your windows with your soft bristled brush or dust cloth will remove things like cobwebs, dirt, and dust before windows are made wet. If left intact these things will make windows all the more difficult to clean so be sure not to overlook the benefits of dry cleaning your windows before all else.
Mix Your Own Cleaner
Remember when both white vinegar and hot water were mentioned? Well, there’s good reason for their inclusion here. Both are used in mixing a potent cleaning solution that’s both non toxic and environmentally safe. Your solution should consist of 50% hot water and 50% white vinegar. Far better than store bought chemicals, this mixture will remove even the most stubborn of debris from your windows and doesn’t leave streaks nor spots.
Once your windows have been dry cleaned you can begin scrubbing them with a soft but firm sponge and/or a lint free cloth. Scrub with gentle pressure using a circular motion until all debris is removed. Take care not to let your cleaning solutions run down onto window frames and tracts. Have a dry cloth on hand to catch the run off.
Squeegee Your Way To Success
After you’ve thoroughly scrubbed your windows it’s time for your squeegee to go to work. In a straight line and in a top to bottom stroke, move your squeegee to the bottom of your window’s glass. Repeat moving from left to right until all excess solution is removed. It’s incredibly important to remember to wipe your squeegee’s blade with a lint free cloth after every complete stroke lest you make a mess of your windows.
Don’t Forget The Frames
When people clean their windows they tend to place their entire focus on the glass portion of said glass. Of equal importance during a cleaning, your window frames will need to be wiped clean with a damp cloth and non-ammoniated cleaning solution. Water can be used in the event you don’t want to use any chemicals but they must be cleaned either way. Failure to address frames can make the work you’ve just done a moot point as debris in and on frames can travel to glass and even attract pests.
When In Doubt
If at any point you find yourself frustrated, stuck, or defeated while cleaning your home’s windows be sure to consult with a professional window cleaner. Most are happy to give tips and pointers if it will help you out of a jam. Of course, if you’d rather not clean your windows, professionals are also relatively inexpensive to hire. Let the pros help you make your home shine and be a neighborhood standout.