Tips for window cleaning will let in spring sunshine

Cleaning windows, mirrors and other glass around your home isn’t a difficult task, but getting it done without streaks can be a challenge. These tips will help you get your glass surfaces sparkling clean.

1. Clean top to bottom.
If you really want your window or mirror to be streak-free, clean from top to bottom. Begin at the top and work your way down to make sure that no drips will happen on the glass surfaces that are already perfectly cleaned.

2. Use a squeegee.
It’s amazing what a difference this one simple tool makes on glass. Having to rewipe areas of glass is a guarantee that you’ll have streaks. Using a squeegee makes it effortless to polish each section of the window. A long-handled squeegee is a must if you’ll be doing tall windows, and it will do double duty in cleaning shower walls as well.

3. Wash windows on a cloudy day.
The sun can prematurely dry the window wash, leaving residue and streaks. Wait for a cloudy day to wash your windows and you’ll end up with a brilliant, streak-free shine.

4. Clean corners with cotton swabs.
No matter how hard you try, residue seems to build up in the corners of your glass. It can be very difficult to get to that residue — unless you have the right tool. Try using a cotton swab to clean those hard to reach areas of the windows in your home.

5. Try an old T-shirt.
Try washing windows with an old, worn T-shirt. Old T-shirts won’t have any lint residue, and they are just absorbent enough to get a window polished clean.

6. Try homemade window cleaner.
Mix together 1 cup rubbing alcohol, 1 cup water, and 1 tablespoon vinegar. Using isopropyl alcohol and white vinegar together makes a quickly evaporating spray glass and mirror cleaner that competes with national brands. This can also be used to give a nice shine to hard tiles, chrome and other surfaces.

7. Use newspapers, or don’t.
There are many people who love to use newspapers to polish their glass surfaces. It does work and can work well, but many people don’t like getting newsprint on their hands. The newspaper also doesn’t hold up very well when it gets wet. But it’s worth giving it a try.

Joel Wensley is a licensed mechanical contractor in the state of Michigan, a member of the Comfort Institute, and is also the president of Mechanical Heating & Cooling in Dearborn Heights.