What is the Best Way to Clean Windows?

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  • Written By: Daniel Liden
  • Edited By: Bronwyn Harris
  • Last Modified Date: 29 February 2020
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Clean windows can be very important to the aesthetic appeal of a building or vehicle and are also important for practical purposes. Cleaning windows, however, can be an arduous task. They can be very difficult to reach, and all to often they end up covered with streaks after being cleaned. Even when an afternoon of hard work ends with clean windows, one often discovers scratches in the windows that were once obscured with grime. There are methods of cleaning windows that overcome all of these issues without too much work.

To clean windows effectively, you should use a squeegee or a sponge to prevent streaks as much as possible. Often, upon washing both sides of a window, it is difficult to tell which side of the window has streaks. To prevent that, you can wash one side of the window with vertical strokes and the other side with horizontal strokes. The side that the streaks are on can then be determined based on their orientation. Also, you should wash the outside of the window first--it is usually much dirtier, and cleaning it first ensures that the dirt on the inside is more visible.


To wash the outside of a window, you should first use a broom or dry paper towel to remove large pieces of debris and spiderwebs. If an outside window is particularly dirty, it might even be useful to use a hose or spray bottle to remove as much of the dirt as possible. From that point, both sides of the window can be washed with a clean squeegee or sponge. Some kind of window cleaner can be used as well, as glass cleaning products tend to streak less than water does. Water often has impurities that remain on the glass and leave unpleasant streaks.

Clean windows often look dirty because of scratches and other small imperfections. Small scratches can often be removed or at the very least considerably reduced. If an area of a window has small scratches, one should scrub it with toothpaste. This method can be used to repair such small scratches. A soft tooth brush can be used to reach and clean corners.

For a clean, shining finish, one can wipe windows with crumpled newspapers. Cotton t-shirts and blackboard erasers have a similar effect. They give the windows a coating that resists water and leaves a very pleasant shine. These are the best methods to clean windows that do not involve a significant amount of money or an expensive professional service.


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Post 2

Newspapers really are the best thing to use when wiping your windows down. For years, I wiped mine with a cloth, and I always had ugly streaks. Newspapers totally remove the streaks.

My ex-boyfriend first introduced me to using newspaper to wipe glass clean, and I could hardly believe how clean it got my windshield. I simply sprayed it with a glass cleaner and wiped a newspaper across it until it was dry.

Since then, I have been using newspaper on all my windows. I don't usually crumple it up until I have been using it awhile and it has become moist. I find that I get more use out of each sheet this way.

Post 1

I never would have thought to do one side vertically and the other horizontally. That is a great tip! I will do this in the spring, when I clean all the windows in my house.

I can see how using cotton shirts would help. I know that using washcloths can be bad, because they can leave lint behind.

I clean my eyeglasses with strips of old t-shirts, and this always gets the streaks off. I will just need a much bigger piece to do an actual window.

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