Gone are the days of the window cleaner arriving with a ladder over his shoulder – rising costs have put paid to that, so it’s down to us to keep our view to the outside world spick and span. But unless you’re ultra efficient, cleaning the windows, or washing the curtains, isn’t part of your daily housework, and most probably get the mop out once a fortnight, if not less frequently. However, having sparkly clean windows, and spotless fresh-smelling clean curtains, can really give us a boost, especially on glorious sunny days.
Dirt and grime quickly build up on the window’s surface, both inside and out, and if your cleaning method isn’t up to scratch, this can easily result in smears and smudges. So what’s the best way to achieve a crystal clear finish?
How to clean windows – perfectly
To achieve a streak-free shine, pick a day when the sun isn’t shining, as this can result in the windows drying too quickly, leaving smears.
Washing up liquid
Sponge or squeegee
Clean microfibre cloths or paper towels
Large towels to protect the floor
Bucket for your cleaning mixture
Garden hose – for really dirty panes
For dirty windows
If the outside of your windows is particularly grimy, mix up a solution of warm water and approximately 1 tbsp of washing up liquid
With your sponge, wipe down the windows, ensuring you get right into the corners
Once done, give them a good spray with the garden hose
Dry them off with a microfibre cloth and now you’re ready to start cleaning them properly!
For regular window cleaning
Mix up a solution of 50% vinegar to 50% hot water and pour it into a spray bottle
If you’re working on the interior of the windows, spread some towels on the floor, or window sill, to catch any drips
Moisten the window with the solution
Taking your sponge, or squeegee, and working from the top down, wash over the glass, making sure you get right into the corners
If you’re using a squeegee for this, wipe the blade off after every stroke
If you have any really stubborn spots, use a little neat vinegar on a cloth to remove them
As you go, dry the windows with a clean microfibre cloth, or paper towels
Vinegar is a great product to keep in the cupboard – and not just for chips! For many decades the power of simple vinegar has been recognised – from washing the floor to easing bruises and sore throats, vinegar really is a wonderful thing to have around.