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How to Clean Your Windows

Young woman in yellow gloves cleaning window with blue rag and spray detergent
Voyagerix/Shutterstock

Washing windows is one of those household chores many of us prefer to ignore. Cleaning windows isn’t always an easy task, but it needs to be done if you want to keep your home looking nice.

Four Tips Before You Start

Before you dig out the glass cleaner, there are things you can do to make window washing a little easier.

  • You only need to wash windows a couple of times a year, so don’t fret. Spring is a great time to do them, as is autumn.
  • Clean the indoor side of the windows from top to bottom and the outdoor side from left to right. Using different directions on each side makes it easier to detect where the streaks are.
  • You don’t have to buy expensive equipment. Some cleaner, rags, a ladder, and a little (or a lot) of elbow grease are the main ingredients to a clean window. Pass on the squeegee and power washer and save some money.
  • Wash windows on the right type of day. If the sun is shining bright and it’s hot out, the cleaner will dry out too fast leaving streaks you’ll spend all day fighting with. Of course, you also don’t want to do this job in the rain. Pick a cooler, cloudy day with no rain.

How to Wash Your Windows

Start by dry wiping the windows down. Clean off the window frame with a dust cloth or rag (we like microfiber cloths because they pick that stuff up like magic), or use a dust attachment on your vacuum. 

Dusty and dirty blinds, shades, and curtains can also get your windows dusty and messy again quickly if you don’t clean them too. You can use a microfiber duster on all of them to keep them from messing up your window cleaning job.

Shop for the Right Cleaner, or Make Your Own

When it comes to clean, streak-free windows, don’t skimp on the cleaner. If you want your home to look nice and you want to see out your windows, you want to invest in quality glass cleaner rather than a no-name bottle from the dollar store or discount shelf.

Invisible Glass is one of the most recommended products on the market if you want streak-free windows the first time you wash them. Not only that, but Invisible Glass offers a fine mist that will stay in place until you’re ready to clean the window, instead of running down the window into a pool at the bottom like many sprays.

If you prefer DIY cleaners, combine two cups of water, a half a cup of white vinegar, and a quarter if a cup of rubbing alcohol (70-percent concentration is preferable). Be sure to mark the bottle with what it contains and the ingredients, so it’s easier to mix in the future.

Use the Right Cloth

Don’t clean your windows using paper towel. You’ll leave flecks of paper all over the windows. Again, microfiber cloths offer that best cleanability and drying ability you’ll find, but you can use anything lint-free (even newspaper if you’ve got it lying around).

You might think you’ll save some time using a squeegee, but leave that for outside window cleaning (if you must). Indoors you’ll end up with water pooled on your floor. If you have a tall picture window, use a ladder to get things clean instead.

Yvonne Glasgow Yvonne Glasgow
Yvonne Glasgow has been a professional writer for almost two decades. Yvonne has worked for nutritionists, start-ups, dating companies, SEO firms, newspapers, board game companies, and much more as a writer and editor. She's also a published poet and a short story writer. Read Full Bio »

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