Whether you are cleaning windows, your glass coffee table, tumblers or shower screen, it is more about what is in your bucket. No matter how much elbow grease you put in or how expensive and 'market leading' your commercial solution is, the secret is in the bucket. Here at Ace Cleaning Services, we want to share our top secrets when it comes to cleaning your windows, glass doors and tumblers, and how to leave them sparkling clean.
1. Do your taps run hard water? No matter what solution you may be using, if you are mixing it with tap water, this could be the reason for your streaky windows. In truth, it normally doesn't matter what 'water' you are using, but it is a great idea to mix your cleaning solution with distilled water - it contains no minerals and so will not leave behind an oily residue. Again, this will help clean everything in your home or office; mirrors, glass surfaces and glass tumblers.
2. Vinegar is key. You can't deny it, vinegar is the all round, multi purpose cleaning ingredient. It can actually be used to clean almost anything, not just your windows or glassware, but it can help remove stains from carpets and clothing. Use a 50/50 vinegar and water solution, spray or wipe on and watch those streaks disappear. Not the best smell in the world, but open your windows or spray some air freshener and you are good to go!
3. Don't use tissue! One of the most commonly used items to clean windows and glassware is tissue/paper towels. This is the first mistake. Paper towels will always leave behind streaks and lint. You want to make sure you are using a sponge, microfibre cloth, or, best of all in our eyes, some newspaper. They will be much more successful at removing streaks and residue from your windows or glass surfaces. One thing to note when it comes to using newspaper is be sure to protect your hands from the running ink - try a coffee filter if you have one lying around, no ink to worry about but as effective as newspaper!
4. Be sure to buff. Take your dry microfibre cloth or scrunched up newspaper and buff away. With circular movements and a reasonable amount of pressure, buffing your windows will help eliminate any streaks that have been left behind.
5. Keep your windows clean. A very obvious, but essential tip. Your windows may not look dirty, but every day, residue is gathering on them and building up. The longer you leave in between cleaning your windows, the longer it will take to clean them. You will find the longer you leave them, the more streaks you have when you finally get around to cleaning them, so keep on top and it will be a weekly quick vinegar spritz and newspaper buff and you're done.
6. Don't clean on a sunny day. It is a good idea to cleaning your windows on an overcast day, rather than when the sun is shining in through the windows. The sun will dry your homemade cleaning solution before you have had time to clean the whole window, leaving behind streaks and residue.
7. Homemade cleaning solutions are as effective as any commercial brand. If you are not too keen on using vinegar on your windows or glassware due to the smell, we have a delicate, floral alternative. Take some dish detergent or washing powder, say 2 teaspoons, add half a lemon with the juice squeezed into your bucket and you have one of the most effective window cleaning solutions for streaky windows. The detergent and lemon offer a much more pleasant odour than the vinegar, but is as effective at cutting through the dirt and grime on your windows.