Window Cleaning Tips from a Pro
Two scrubbers are better than one
Use two different scrubbers—one for inside and one for outside—so you don’t carry pollutants and bird excrement inside
Liquid dish detergent rules
Any kitchen dish liquid cleans dirt and grease and leaves the glass slippery so your squeegee glides well. A 100-percent biodegradable soap will protect sensitive plants outside. Inside it will protect toddlers and pets who put their mouth on the windows or sills.
Vinegar works, too
If you prefer to use natural cleaning products, vinegar is a viable choice for cleaning windows. Vinegar (acetic acid) cuts grease and doesn’t streak which makes it ideal for cleaning glass. We recommend a solution of 50 percent white vinegar and 50 percent tap water.
Oh, oh, oh it’s magic
Mr. Clean Magic Eraser removes silicone caulk and water stains.
Dual-purpose paint can opener
A paint can opener is the perfect tool for popping out window screens.
The Best Way to Clean Windows, According to Our Cleaning Lab
Choose a dry, cloudy day.
“Do this job in the blazing sun and the cleaner will dry onto the hot windows before you get to wipe it off, leaving hard-to-remove streaks,” Forte says. If the weather won’t cooperate, start on the shady side of the house.
Remove dirt and dust first.
Before you get started, sweep dirt from the window frame with a brush or vacuum it up with your machine’s dusting attachment. This will prevent dirt from turning into a muddy mess when mixed with a cleaner. If your window screen looks especially grimy, pop it out and wash with hot, sudsy water and a soft brush, then rinse and let dry before putting it back
Pick the right cleaner — and spritz generously.
Don’t hold back on the spray, especially if your windows look extra dirty. “You need plenty of cleaner to dissolve and suspend the dirt so it can be completely wiped away — skimp and you’ll be seeing streaks,” Forte says
Use a microfiber cloth.
Some folks like drying panes with newspaper, but you’re better off reusable microfiber cloths. “They are super absorbent, washable, and leave the glass shiny and streak-free,” Forte says.
Skip the squeegee.
“Professional window cleaners swear by them, but you have to know how to use them right,” Forte says. “You squeegee down and where does the water go? On the floor.”
get sparkling windows inside and out without streaking with our expert tips
Invite the brightness back into your home with sparkling clean windows. From making your own window cleaning solution to the trusted old newspaper trick, there are plenty of ways to bring the shine back to your window panes. Never underestimate the power of clean windows to transform your rooms, making them light, bright and good for the soul.
Remove curtains and blinds
Start by taking down curtains and blinds. If you can, take the opportunity to give drapes a thorough wash or spritz with a fabric freshener like Febreze. Use a dry brush or dusting attachment on your vacuum to sweep away any dust or cobwebs from around the corners of the windows and the windowsills
What’s the best thing to clean windows with?
We recommend washing your windows with soapy water. Fill a bucket with a simple solution of washing-up liquid and warm water, but avoid creating too many soap suds as these will leave further marks if allowed to dry. Start washing windows using a non-abrasive sponge. Alternatively, try a specific window-cleaning fluid, but be careful that strong formulas don’t damage surrounding paintwork
How to cleaning windows without streaks – wipe off any excess cleaner
To remove soapy water from glass, use a clean squeegee to work from top to bottom in a reverse S pattern. Periodically wipe the squeegee blade on a clean rag to avoid smearing dirt around. Remove remaining water with a damp chamois or microfibre cloth and dry the windowsill. Avoid paper towels or cloths that might leave lint on the glass. For exterior upper-floor panes, it’s worth investing in a gadget with a U-shaped pole to avoid reaching out of top-floor windows!
Try traditional methods
If you prefer to make your own cleaning solutions, add two tablespoons of vinegar to a small bucket of warm water (this won’t kill bacteria, though). If your windows need tough love, add two tablespoons of household ammonia, but wear rubber gloves. Buffing your clean, dry glass with crumpled newspaper gives windows a sparkling finish.
Unusual Tips for Your Cleanest Windows Ever
Washing the windows can be a dreaded chore. If you’re using conventional cleaning products, removing those stubborn streaks from the interior and exterior of clear glass is especially tricky. Paper towel leaves behind fibers that gunk up the window and commer
Clean the frame first
A lot of grime can hide in the window tracks and frame, and when mixed with window cleaner, it may form an unsightly sludge that can drip onto the glass while cleaning. To remove the grit, use a toothbrush and a sprinkle of baking soda and vinegar to scrub inside the tracks, then wipe away any remaining residue with a wet rag.
Make your own soap
Skip the specialty products and make your own cleaning solution using a mix of water and dish soap, which is tough enough to cut through grime on especially dirty windows, like those in the kitchen, yet won’t leave a residue. Alternatively, vinegar can also be used as an effective cleaner.
Paper is bad news
Paper towels and newspapers are commonly misused as products for scrubbing and drying the glass—but they just break down and leave lint behind. Use a microfiber cloth (like these from Amazon) to do the job instead; it will grab dirt and dust and leave nothing behind.
Invest in a squeegee
The best way to ensure a streak-free shine is to make sure all the water and soap are removed from the window. Use a rubber-bladed squeegee tool to run over the glass from top to bottom to scrape away excess water
How to Clean Windows Like a Pro
Ideally, windows should be washed twice a year, but it’s a task most people don’t look forward to. Part of what makes DIY window cleaning such a chore is that homeowners insist on doing it with wadded-up paper towels or newspaper, spray cleaner, and a ton of elbow grease
“All that rubbing isn’t a good idea,” says Brent Weingard, owner of Expert Window Cleaners in New York City. “You’re just moving dirt around from one spot to another and putting a static charge on the glass, which attracts dust and dirt. As soon as you finish, the window looks dirty again.”
As Weingard demonstrates, it’s easier and more effective to clean windows like the pros do: with a squeegee and a few other readily available tools. The techniques aren’t complicated, he says, and the results may surprise you
Wash with a strip applicator (Picture Window)
Picture windows call for large tools. The long cloth head of a strip applicator soaks up a lot of soapy water and knocks dirt loose without scratching the glass. For a cleaning solution, Weingard uses
Wipe clean with a squeegee (Picture Window)
Starting at the top left, pull the squeegee over the soapy pane in a reverse-S pattern (left-handers would start at the top right). At the end of each stroke, wipe the squeegee’s blade clean with a lint-free rag. Cloth diapers or old linen napkins are perfect for this task