You’re Cleaning Windows Wrong

Which is why Maid Sailors is hoping you’ll read this twice. While cleaning windows sounds like an easy task, it’s actually a very nuanced art and there is a way to properly accomplish it. For instance, after wiping windows, if they’re streaky or soapy, the job is technically unfinished. Given the shocking nature of this realization, we’ve decided to help you cope by listing a few easy tips to get the job done like a window replacement or maintenance expert

Be Prepared: Make a Plan

A plan goes a long, long way. Make a cleaning plan (even if it’s only mental) and assemble all of your materials. Additionally, make sure to work on your windows from the inside first before heading outside. Here’s the list of items you should keep ready before starting your cleaning job:

  • bucket
  • squeegee (+10 points if you actually have one of these)
  • mop
  • detergent
  • rags
  • poles
  • ladders (maybe)

Also, find out if you can remove the window sash from the frame on the upper floors, as this will save you some time spent on the ladder. With less of the window in the way, it will be easier to reach the nooks and crannies where dirt accumulates.

Easy Cleaning Tips and Tricks

Water temperature. Use cold water instead of hot water. Hot water evaporates quickly which ultimately leaves less lubricant for the squeegee and leaving soapy residue behind

Pick a sunny day. Check the weather forecast for sunny weather

Invest in a squeegee. Professionals spend their money on the squeegee, which is the most important tool you have when cleaning windows

Use a “soapy” cleaner. Non-soapy cleaner will not allow the squeegee to work as well

Now, follow these steps for pristine, Church-like windows.

  1. Wet the mop and pass it over the window. Scrub difficult areas like you would with the dishes.
  2. Squeegee from the top of the window downwards and from side to side, while maintaining even pressure across the blade. Practice the movement a few times to get the experience of swiping (many Millennials should already be good at this), which you’ll perform smoothly by the end of the day.
  3. Keep the blade at a 45-degree angle.
  4. Do not leave the edges until the end and try not to go over cleaned areas.
  5. Use a clean microfiber cloth to clean any residue.

To clean the outside of the windows, follow the same procedure. You may be tempted to fetch the hose and spray the outside of your home and rely on water pressure to remove sticky residue. This is a huge window-cleaning no-no. The dirt that accumulates on the outside will require scrubbing with a mop before it can be completely removed. Using the hose will only leave watermarks after the hose-water. You will use far more water than the job actually requires, while unnecessarily wetting the outside of your home.

Did You Put Decals on Your Window?

Decals stick to the window using a gentle adhesive, but over time, the glue may find itself stick more to the window than the decal itself. To remove difficult decals, use an oily ingredient from the kitchen and a soft scraper to work the oil into the adhesive. You can maybe try using your credit card and mayonnaise (yes, we never thought we’d say “credit card” and “mayonnaise” in the same sentence within an article that wasn’t about buying necessary condiments).

Just imagine all the amazing things you can do with glistening windows. For example, how much more refreshing will a cup of tea feel as you look through your sparkling glass windows? Cleaning is fun when you have ample time and right tools. If you don’t think its fun and you don’t have the right tools, call Maid Sailors and head out to brunch.

Gina Brewton, a mommy blogger and fitness freak, contributed to this piece. Follow her on twitter, here.

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