Spring is just around the corner, bringing with it brighter days and that irresistible urge to wipe away the dreary effects of winter. Just like the gutters and siding, windows need a little TLC too. Grime-streaked windows don’t just affect your curb appeal; if not removed it can cause etching which eventually weakens glass panes. Increase the lifespan of your windows with these easy spring cleaning tips.
Schedule a Time
In order to get the full benefit of sparkly clean windows, you’ll need to clean both inside and outside. Window cleaning professionals advise homeowners to clean the inside windows first. They don’t need to be done on the same day, but to make sure you don’t forget, schedule a time for both and keep to the schedule.
For cleaning the windows of your home’s exterior, select a cloudy day. Washing windows when it’s sunny can cause the glass to dry too quickly, resulting in chemical residue and smearing.
Have Supplies and Tools Handy
Gather together all the supplies and tools you will need for spring cleaning your windows. Common cleaning supplies include:
- Earth-friendly cleaning solutions – skip glass cleaners that contain harsh chemicals
- Soap and water
- Soft bristle brush for “dusting”
- Clean rags, soft towels, or microfiber cloths for wiping and drying
- Sponge or squeegee for scrubbing
Make it easy on yourself by using the right tools for the particular task at hand. For example, if the windows you are cleaning this spring have multiple panes, a sponge will be the preferred tool to a squeegee. However, when cleaning large windows or sliding glass doors a squeegee will cover more ground with less effort.
Before actually Washing the Windows
Use a soft bristle brush to remove dirt and grime before applying soap and water. Getting rid of any loose dirt on the glass panes first will help reduce the amount of work required to get the windows sparkling. Pay attention also to the window frame and trim – brushing away the dirt from around the window will ensure that once the windows are clean, debris from the frame won’t land back on the glass.
General Window Cleaning Tips
When cleaning exterior windows for a house more than one storey, start at the top and work down.
To wash and dry tall windows without a stepstool or ladder use a mop or squeegee with an extension pole.
Most types of dirt and grime can be washed away with soap and water. Apply cleaner to remove stubborn stains. Use only a short squirt or a small amount of cleaning solution.
The same goes for soapy water. You don’t want it too sudsy – use only a small amount of liquid detergent to avoid creating streaks.
Clean exterior windows at the end of spring when pollen and tree sap “season” is over.
While cleaning the windows, take note of any repairs that need to be done. Typical repairs include: replacing cracked caulking, broken hardware, cracked or missing panes, and damaged frames.
Washing Your Windows
Dip a cloth in soapy water, wring it out, and apply to the glass pane starting in the middle and working outward in small circles.
Rinse off with clean water using a damp cloth or garden hose.
When using a chemical solution, spray it in the centre of the glass pane. Use a damp cloth to spread the cleaner evenly as possible over the entire area (from middle to outer edges).
Rinse the microfiber cloth in clean water and wring it out until it’s only slightly damp. Wipe the surface of the glass as evenly as possible to remove any excess moisture.
Because it is so absorbent, if you use a microfiber cloth you won’t need to use a separate cloth for drying.