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Dirty Windows Can Permanently Damage the Glass

January 10, 2017

Cleaning windows can be a time consuming and frustrating job, especially when, after putting in the effort, you’re left with streaky windows. For this reason, many homeowners forego cleaning the windows in their homes for long periods of time.

Another reason homeowners delay cleaning windows is that accessing the exterior of the windows can be a trial. Plants and bushes are often in the way of ground floor windows and ladders are needed to clean upper level windows. During the winter months in Canada, the snow and cold can make it near impossible to do any outside cleaning.

What many people don’t realize is that dirt and grim left in place can wear down the glass over time. Window glass is a porous surface that absorbs the elements from the environment. As such, glass can become permanently stained and damaged, inside and out, from exposure to everything from salt water spray, oxidization, airborne pollutants, dirt, rust and minerals.

While some windows are much easier to clean than others, to prevent damage and extend the lifespan of your window glass, it’s important to clean the windows in your home at least twice per year. Not only will regular cleanings preserve the glass, but clean windows also allow more sunlight into the home, which increases thermal efficiency and helps to decrease heating costs, creates a pleasant indoor atmosphere and increases occupant exposure to Vitamin D – especially important during the long Canadian winters.

Cleaning windows doesn’t have to be a daunting task. To properly, and easily, clean your windows, follow these steps and you’ll have clean windows in no time.

1) Wipe down the window and frame

To help prevent streaking, first go over the entire surface of the window and frame with a lint-free rag or cloth to remove any excess dirt or grim.

2) Choose a cleaning solution – or make your own!

You can buy a window cleaning solution at most grocery or hardware stores but many generic cleaners contain harmful chemicals that can do more damage than good. Alternatively, it’s easy to make your own cleaner from common household ingredients. For example, vinegar and water is an effective cleaning solution, as vinegar is a natural disinfectant that cuts through grease and grim. For regular use, combine about ¼ cup of vinegar to 2 cups of water in a spray bottle. If your windows are particularly dirty, add a small amount of dish soap, about ½ a teaspoon, to the vinegar and water solution.

3) Use a squeegee to wipe down windows

Professional window cleaners swear by squeegees for wiping windows after the solution has been applied. A squeegee won’t cause streaking and doesn’t leave a static charge on windows like cloths and paper towels. The static charge is what quickly attracts dust and dirt to a newly cleaned window, causing great frustration for homeowners. To get the best quality with the most savings over time, look for squeegees with replaceable blades – and be sure to use both sides before replacing the blade.

Some windows are easier to clean than others

The unique functionality of European Tilt & Turn windows makes it easy to have clean, clear windows all year round. With a turn of the handle, the window swings fully inward, allowing you to clean the exterior of your windows from inside your home. Moreover, Tilt & Turn windows feature single panes of glass that are unobstructed by cross-sections, which makes cleaning simple, and enables you to enjoy the view from your home and maximum natural light all year round. For more tips on how to properly clean your windows or to find out more about European Tilt & Turn windows, contact us today!

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