Pssst. Hey you… Yeah you… Looking for some hot tips on window cleaning? Some industry insider information that will help you get your windows gleaming, your tracks slick and sliding, and your screens de-gunked?
Of course you are.
Everyone loves clean windows, it’s like the proverbial equivalent of having your teeth cleaned. It makes you feel so fresh and so clean. The problem with getting your teeth cleaned is the painful visit to the dentist. Similarly, with window cleaning, it can be pretty painful cleaning all of the windows in your home.
Well, you’re reading the right article, because here are the hottest, money saving, and most insightful window cleaning tips that you are going to find on the web. As you can probably tell, we are pretty excited about window cleaning and by the time your finished reading these tips you will be too. So, let’s dive in!
Dump the spray and wipe method
Heard that song “Drop it like it’s hot!”? That’s what you have to do with your spray-on window cleaning products.
Spray-on window cleaners may be ok for doing a spot clean here or there, but as a long-term solution to window cleaning, they just don’t cut it.
They take a lot more time and energy than cleaning windows with a squeegee. You have to move the solution around the window and buff it into the glass with a paper towel or newspaper.
Also, these solutions can leave a film over the glass which at first seems clean but later attracts residue and moisture. In time you will start seeing the swirl marks of where you have rubbed the cleaner.
Want to get serious about window cleaning? Get yourself a squeegee
Have you ever seen a builder try to build a house without a hammer? Or, what about an astronaut fly into space without a spaceship?
A good window cleaner never attempts to wash windows without a squeegee by his side.
You can get squeegees online or at your local hardware store.
Splurging for a decent quality squeegee that allows you to change the squeegee rubber from time to time is worth it. Squeegees cut down on the amount of time you spend cleaning, the energy you use, and the results are “clearly” better.
Become a master of your new tool
Remember when Luke Skywalker had to practice using the force and his lightsaber? Possibly not, but you probably get the point. Now that you have a squeegee, you have to learn how to use it. Here is a quick introductory guide to using a simple squeegee method:
- Wet and scrub the window with a sponge and your window cleaning solution (we’ll talk more about this in a moment)
- Taking your squeegee, start from the top of the window frame, apply a little pressure, and drag all the dirty water down to the bottom of the frame
- Next, use a cloth to wipe the squeegee rubber dry/clean
- Depending on the size of the pane, you will have to repeat this process several times
- Move a little under a full squeegee length over onto the next section of glass that still has your solution remaining on it. Again, starting from the top, drag the dirty water down to the bottom of the pane.
There you have it, a simple guide to using your new squeegee.
Don’t forget the finishing touches
A good window cleaner should have an eye for detail, they should bring an element of finesse to their work. You can race through all the glass with your newly learnt squeegee skills, but to do a professional job there is a little tidying up to do.
Let’s run through some of the smaller tasks that might get missed but make the difference between a good job and a great job.
- In regard to the following steps, do yourself a favour and start a collection of old bath towels. It is also a good idea to have a few clean microfibre cloths on hand for your window cleaning adventures.
- Before you clean a window, lay an old towel on the ground or the sill below the pane. This way if any excess water drips down you will be able to catch it with the towel.
- Once you have finished cleaning the window pane you can do an especially neat job by detailing the frame and glass seals. Use a clean, dry microfibre cloth to wipe along the section of the window where the frame meets the glass. This ensures that no excess water or runaway drips will leave streaks on the window pane.
- It is also a good idea to quickly step back and scan the glass from a different angle. It is quicker to fix any mistakes while you are at the window, rather than spot something later after you have packed away your window cleaning gear.
Advanced window cleaning techniques
At this point in the article you’ve got the knowledge to get the job done. But a true professional window cleaner does more than “just enough”. Sometimes cleaning window isn’t as straight forward as just wetting up a window and squeegeeing it off.
At times you need some advanced window cleaning techniques to take a pane of glass to next level sparkling clean. However, be warned, some of these techniques require a little more finesse and care.
- Steel wool is awesome for window cleaning. You have to use a “fine” or “super fine” grade of steel wool, but it is fantastic for taking off marks and stains that your window cleaning solution has not removed.
- When you use steel wool, it is best to test it out on a corner of the glass before going to crazy with it. Especially if the window is tinted.
- You don’t need to use too much pressure. Just lightly rub it on the mark or residue.
- A razor blade scraper is great for taking off sticker residue and other hard to remove substances.
- Again, you have to be very careful using a scraper blade. Make sure the blade is new, clean, and has no grit on it. Note that using a blade on tinted windows can be especially dangerous.
- Test the blade out on a corner of the pane.
- Always scrape in one direction, one foot at a time. Never pull the scraper backwards and forwards – that is a recipe for disaster.
You should be able to find both a scraper blade and steel wool in the painting section of your local hardware store. Using these two tools and techniques takes a lot more care and focus, however, sometimes they are your only option for removing stubborn marks and dirt.
Now you should be ready and raring to go out and clean your windows. You might even be so excited with your new skills that you’ll want to clean your neighbours windows and do your gutters as well! Ok, maybe we won’t get that carried away. The point is that window cleaning doesn’t have to be a drag if you have the right tools, mindset, and know-how.
Author – Paul Routledge
Paul runs his window cleaning business “Twenty20 Window Cleaning” on the Gold Coast, Australia. Paul has two passions: window cleaning and blogging. Sometimes he kills two birds with one stone by mixing the two together to write articles about window cleaning. You can see more of his work at https://www.twenty20windowcleaning.com.au/blog.