Ever thought you did a great job washing your windows, only to return to streaky glass once everything is dry? Most of us can attest to just how annoying those streaks are. That’s why we researched the best way to clean windows once and for all. Here’s how to get a clear, sparkling finish each and every time.
Get the Right Equipment
One thing you’ll need to invest in for this project is a small squeegee, preferably with a long, detachable handle. You should be able to find a high-quality squeegee for right around $20 at your local hardware store, with higher-end models costing up to about $40 and more basic models available for as low as $5. We recommend a squeegee with a durable rubber blade for the best results.
Here’s the complete equipment list. All these items are inexpensive and readily available at just about any big box or hardware store:
- Squeegee, as mentioned above, with extra blades just in case
- A five-gallon plastic bucket
- Dishwashing liquid, like Dawn or similar
- Scrubber or sponge
- Lint-free rags or towels
Fill your five-gallon plastic bucket with two gallons of cool water and a teaspoon of dishwashing liquid. That’s all there is to it!
Get Started with the Best Way to Clean Windows
Dip your scrubber or sponge in the bucket of solution and be sure to wring out the excess water. Scrub the glass all the way to the edge and be sure not to skip an inch. You’ll want to use different angles and really get in there. This helps get rid of the patterns of dust and dirt that rain and wind can cause. Once you feel as though you’re done scrubbing, it’s time to grab that squeegee.
Start by cleaning a narrow strip of glass vertically on one side (think a one- or two-inch strip closest to the frame on one side). To do this, tilt the squeegee so that only a corner comes in contact with the glass, then drag downward. Repeat on the other side. This will help ensure you get the soap solution off every bit of the glass.
Next, drag the squeegee across the top of the glass horizontally. You’ll need to make sure you keep the top of the squeegee in contact with the top edge of the window.
This next part is super important: be sure to wipe the rubber blade of the squeegee on a lint-free cloth or towel after every pass across the window. While it might just be the most tedious part of washing windows, if you don’t wipe the blade, you risk moving the dirt and debris around and creating those infamous streaks we mentioned earlier.
Continue to work down the window horizontally, overlapping the previous stroke. As you work your way down, you’ll probably notice excess water accumulating near the bottom of the glass. Taking time to remove these drips is another key step in preventing streaks. Take a clean lint-free cloth or towel and run it along any areas that appear to have water droplets.
And repeat, repeat, repeat till all your windows are shining! If you have to break out the ladder to reach upper stories, we recommend using a ladder stabilizer, and better yet, requesting the help of a friend or family member.
You can use this method to clean the inside of your windows, too. You’ll just need to take a few extra precautions to avoid getting water and cleaning solution everywhere. Try laying down a tarp under any window you happen to be working under.
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