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Cleaning Windows (Inside and Outside)

Category Windows
Cleaning windows can be daunting taks but there are ways to make the job easier. This is a guide about cleaning windows inside and out.
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Solutions

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By 13 found this helpful
August 10, 2011

I figured this out years ago because I am short and we have lots of windows that need to be washed using a step ladder. Buy an inexpensive liquid dishwasher detergent (for a dishwasher) that has a "sheeting action" in the soap. Fill a bucket with warm water and stir in 1 cup of dishwashing detergent (for a dishwasher).

Go outside and set up your garden hose for rinsing the windows. First rinse the window with clear water. Then using a sponge mop on a handle dipped into the detergent, wash your window. Follow with a clean water rinse and let dry. The sheeting action of the detergent will leave the windows streak free.

By Shirley from Vicksburg, MI

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August 10, 20110 found this helpful

Finally and easier way to clean my windows outside! I also like the idea of the dishwasher detergent with sheeting action to prevent streaks! I guess you know what I'll be doing this weekend. ;) Thank you.

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By 7 found this helpful
December 1, 2012

I hated cleaning our outside windows. It was a lot of work. Expensive too.
I was looking for a way to clean them cheaply on the fly without breaking my back.

Now I buy the cheapest off-season windshield washer fluid I can find, usually a no-name brand, dump it undiluted into a pail and using a telescopic long handled window cleaner sponge/scraper, the job is done in no time without having the backache afterwards that I always used to get.

Suggestions: Buy the summer time windshield washer in the fall when everyone wants to get rid of inventory, and vice versa in the spring when the winter fluid is on sale. You can get a gallon for little over $1.

Use a rectangular shaped pail instead of a round one. You can get these at the dollar store. It's easier for the window cleaning tool to get in and out of.

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December 26, 20120 found this helpful

Even cheaper, I make my own car windshield washer fluid for pennies a gallon. Use a 1 gallon milk jug or similar one. Pour in 1 bottle of alcohol, then refill alcohol bottle with distilled vinegar, add that plus 2T dawn dish washer liquid, then fill the gallon jug with water. You have 1 gallon of washer fluid, that will not freeze, cleans exceptionally well, and lasts a long time as well. This also cleans windows great.

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March 18, 20170 found this helpful

A man cleaning a window.

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Low- E windows are best cleaned with vinegar, water, or a microfiber cloth. Some household cleaners can damage the coating and should not be used. This is a guide about cleaning Pella low-e glass windows.

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February 27, 20170 found this helpful

Window with contact paper on it.

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Contact paper left for a long time on windows can be difficult to remove, as age and the sun can affect the adhesive. This is a guide about removing old contact paper from windows.

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April 15, 20052 found this helpful

Cleaning the outside of windows the easy way using Cascade and hot water.

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By 2 found this helpful
February 17, 2010

Clean your windows with just water. I slightly dampen a clean terry cloth towel/rag with water and clean my windows with them. You may have to experiment to get the towel just moist enough to do the job without getting it so moist it leaves water spots.

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July 27, 20160 found this helpful

filters

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This is a guide about clean windows with coffee filters. Paper coffee filters can be used to clean your windows, leaving them streak and lint free.

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By 2 found this helpful
June 21, 2010

I know that everyone who loves this particular site will love this tip. For cleaning mirrors, etc. I don't bother making any concoction; I just use my empty bottle of all purpose cleanser (that I always keep in a spray bottle anyway).

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May 24, 2011

Use vertical strokes when washing windows outside and horizontal for inside windows. This way you can tell which side has the streaks. Straight vinegar will get outside windows really clean.

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By 0 found this helpful
September 17, 2007

I have a huge bag of my husband cotton T-shirts he has discarded, so I started using them to clean all my windows. I am so happy, my windows look great.

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By 1 found this helpful
June 20, 2011

If you have a problem reaching for cleaning windows or anything high inside or out, purchase a telescopic window washer; the kind they use for cleaning bus windows. It works like a charm!

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August 10, 2007

Instead of using paper towels or newspaper for cleaning your windows, try using the collection of wash cloths you have and never use, or pick up some cheap ones at a yard sale. They do a terrific job with a lot less elbow grease and there's no lint on the windows or black on your hands.

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February 21, 20140 found this helpful

Mobile Home Windows

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This is a guide about cleaning mobile home windows. Having clean windows inside and out on your home is wonderful, although it is not always easy to remove screens and reach all parts of the glass.

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By 0 found this helpful
January 14, 2009

I ran out of paper toweling and I don't want to buy any more. I used a cloth baby diaper to wipe down my windows and mirrors. It works great - no streaks! Now I just have to make my own glass cleaner with vinegar and water.

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July 25, 20060 found this helpful

Mix white vinegar 50 - 50 with water and put in a spray bottle. Spray it on generously. . .

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By 1 found this helpful
November 18, 2010

Try using newspaper to clean mirrors and glass. First spray on the cleaning product, then wipe dry with the newspaper. I find paper with just black ink works best, and not slick, shiny paper - just plain old newspaper.

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June 1, 2010

If you have run out of window cleaner, use a damp newspaper. They work really well and do not streak the glass. Be sure you only use it on glass and do not use newspaper with colored print on it.

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By 0 found this helpful
May 12, 2010

Joy dish detergent works great for cleaning glass tables and windows. It doesn't leave streaks. I use it faithfully.

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December 29, 20050 found this helpful

Forget microfibre cloths and proprietary cleaners. Place a sheet of newspaper in a basin of water; if it doesn't disintegrate, it's ideal for cleaning glass (windscreens, mirrors, and panes).

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Questions

Ask a QuestionHere are the questions asked by community members. Read on to see the answers provided by the ThriftyFun community or ask a new question.

By 0 found this helpful
June 1, 2017

I just moved into a new flat, but I have no idea how to clean these particular windows! They're double glazed and it seems like there is residue from a previous bad cleaning. However when I tried to get it off it seems like the residue/marks are inside the two panels! I don't know how this is possible and I really need your help, the windows just look awful!
Thanks a lot for your answers.

Answer Was this helpful? Yes
June 7, 20170 found this helpful

Thanks a lot for your answer!

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By 0 found this helpful
September 14, 2016

I need to clean my business windows. I'm on a busy main road were anything from farm vehicles, semis, cars, and so on are passing. There is lots of wind blowing dirt, chemicals, and more. I've cleaned the outside windows with Windex, ammonia, vinegar, and tried the toothpaste. I still have these dirty not appealing spots on the window. What else do I try before paying $300 for my 9'x9' window to be cleaned by a pro.

Answer Was this helpful? Yes
February 1, 20170 found this helpful

I would use some clothes or dish detergent, make a lather, and using some sort of brush or cloth, really build up a lather and scrape those windows. THen, rinse it off. YOU might also consider treating your windows with some special covering that eluded dirt.

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By 0 found this helpful
August 6, 2016

What is a good way to clean outside windows on a house?

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February 28, 20170 found this helpful

Vinegar and newspaper are a great way to clean windows. Also using Windex works great.

If you need to reach, you could use a Swiffer.

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By 0 found this helpful
September 24, 2015

I bought an older home that has a sunroom. I don't really want to replace the windows because they are in working order, but they have a film on them due to the sun and other reasons. Is there a way to get this film off or to at least brighten and clean them up?

Answer Was this helpful? Yes
September 25, 20150 found this helpful

Addendum:

Thinking further on this-if the sunroom windows were not cleaned properly before you bought your house, it is possible that they were permanently affected/damaged by whatever cleaners were used in the past. The "film" you see may be the result of bad cleaning products used over the years and may be permanent.

Good Luck!

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By 0 found this helpful
June 5, 2009

What can I use for cleaning windows? How do I use vinegar for window cleaning?

By gauchogran from Stockton, CA

Answer Was this helpful? Yes
June 6, 20090 found this helpful

I use a previous tip of the day from this site

1/2 tsp liquid dish washing soap

1/4 cup vinegar

2 cups water

Put it in a spray bottle and shake to mix.

I don't subscribe to a newspaper...so I just use paper towels.

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By 0 found this helpful
March 24, 2010

We have multiple dots developing on our low E windows. They are in the front and back of house, so it doesn't matter which direction the sun is coming from. We had the original installer out to look at them, but since they are beyond warranty, he just shrugged his shoulders and said he had never seen this problem and we were pretty much ignored.

Has anyone heard of this and what might be causing it? They spots are definite round circles as are polka dots.

By Laurie from Edmonton, Alberta

Answer Was this helpful? Yes
March 26, 20100 found this helpful

We had new pella windows installed on our house a few years ago, we had large circles on windows. They said it was from the factory the way they move the glass, it took a few years to remove them, and when the sun is just right they still show. Pella did not stand behind the windows like they should have, the local window company that installed them messed up and the company said it was due to poor installation, and the local glass company said it was a fault of the pella 's manufacturing. That put us in the middle with no fix to problems. Loved the windows with the shades in between panes, but would not ever go through pella again.

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April 23, 20150 found this helpful

What can be used to clean tinted vinyl sunporch windows?

By Donna from South Daytona, FL

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By 0 found this helpful
July 28, 2010

I have just had new PVC windows installed and there seems to be some sort of scummy marks on the glass, it's like grease or something. Everything I have tried to clean the glass with just seems to wash over the scum and I have tried everything I can think of. Any ideas?

By Kathleen from UK

Answer Was this helpful? Yes
July 28, 20100 found this helpful

This works for me every time, first wash the windows with warm water with a few drops of dish washing detergent in it. Then while the window is still a bit damp but not dripping with water use kitchen paper and white vineger to polish to a sparkling finish.

To be even more frugal newspaper works well for the polishing stage too.

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By 0 found this helpful
September 25, 2012

I do not know what is on my windows. Whatever it is it smudges and stays on them when I wash them. They actually look foggy when the sun shines in. It's on my new car windows, too. I've tried everything I can think of to remove it, but nothing works.

I live in a fairly wooded area and I think it's something from the trees. It starts out as a very very small white/clear dot and when I wash them it smears and nothing will touch it
help

By DB

Answer Was this helpful? Yes
September 26, 20120 found this helpful

My husband has to park his car under pine trees at work.(assigned parking places) The sap can be removed with rubbing alcohol, nail polish remover, or WD-40. Scrub the area with a rag soaked with one of these. When the window stops feeling tacky to the touch, wash with your usual method. Do not get on the paint of your car as it will cause damage. The rubbing alcohol and an old tee shirt seeem to work best for me, followed by Windex. The alcohol I use comes from the dollar store, making this the most economical method. Hope this helps.

Reply Was this helpful? Yes

July 2, 20140 found this helpful

My husband sprayed hornet and wasp spray above a window and the drift left streaks on the window below. How can I remove wasp spray stains from our window?

By Lou L

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May 28, 20130 found this helpful

Is there a method or gadget to clean the outside of your windows from the inside? My upstair windows are too high to do from outside.

By Bob Y.

Answer Was this helpful? Yes

April 6, 20130 found this helpful

I'm a window cleaner and I've been cleaning my customer's windows this week and I've left black blade marks on my customer's windows. I just put Fairy in my water. Any ideas why this is happening or has any window cleaner had the same problem?

By Jeff

Answer Was this helpful? Yes

November 17, 20120 found this helpful

How do I take old Scotch tape off a window?

By Bonzi

Answer Was this helpful? Yes
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