The Basics of Window Cleaning
Published on Tuesday, 02 October 2012
Window cleaning isn't something that we think of very frequently, but the windows are the only source of natural light in a house. They're also a part of the façade and one of the things that people see first when walking in. Naturally, because the glass panes are constantly exposed to weather and dust from the outside, they can't be kept as clean as, say, a kitchen counter. For this particular part of the house, a monthly or fortnightly cleaning should be enough, provided it is done well and thoroughly. So here are the steps you need to go through to make sure your windows shine and let as much natural light as possible into the house.
The number one thing to keep in mind, when cleaning your windows, is safety. Always remember to place the ladder (if you need one) on solid, level ground, do not stretch too much or take any risks with your balance. If you feel that you're too unstable, or you're afraid of heights, get someone else to deal with the higher parts of the windows.
The actual clean-up is fairly straight forward. You're either going to need an all-purpose cleaner in a spray bottle, or make your own cleaning solution according to package directions. When buying cleaning supplies, always attempt to get environmentally friendly chemical-free ones. However, window cleaning is usually done either from outside the house, or with the window open, so you generally do not have to be careful of toxic vapors. That said, some people are extremely sensitive to airborne chemicals, so if at any time you feel dizzy or light-headed, stop immediately, take a break and only resume when you feel up for it. Pregnant and nursing women should avoid cleaning with chemicals altogether.
When cleaning the actual window make sure to spray the entire surface of the pane from a distance of about twenty centimeters, as you would cover a larger surface area from farther away. Then wipe with broad circular motions, if using a cloth or in no more than three swipes if you are using a window cleaner with a handle. Make sure never to rub the window pane, as that will scratch the glass. If there is any dried dirt or anything stubborn on the glass, do not rub. Simply apply a more concentrated dose of window cleaner, wait for the dirt to dissolve and wipe with a soft cloth, applying a little bit of pressure.
After you've cleaned up, you might want to dry the windows with a cloth. This is optional and, if you have the time, it is better to leave the glass to dry out on its own. The only time when wiping away any moisture is absolutely necessary, is in sub-zero weather, as any moisture on the windows could freeze and cause the glass to crack. However, you should generally avoid cleaning the windows in winter, unless absolutely necessary.
These are just a few tips and handy suggestions for keeping the windows of your house in perfect condition. The windows are a key feature in the façade of any house after all and the bigger they are, the more noticeable they become - both from the outside and the inside. Do not forget - looking out through clean windows boosts the atmosphere and the mood inside the home as well. So keep your home in its best possible condition.
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