Tuesday Tips: How to Wash Windows


Today’s Tip: How to wash windows and mirrors (the proper way)

I imagine most people have been taught to wash their mirrors, showers and windows with spray and wipe type products, like I was initially. The problem with these is that quite often they result in a film on the glass and haven’t actually broken down or washed away the dirt.

Then when my Dad and I were helping my sister clean up for her final rental inspection he showed me the method he used when he was teenager and it was his job to wash all the windows in his parents home. The people from the rental agency asked if we’d had the windows professionally washed. In my experience this works very well with large bathroom mirrors and showers as well.

Windows Before and after

You will need

  • A bucket
  • A squeegee
  • Hot water
  • Dishwashing detergent

Optional items

  • A sponge (if your squeegee doesn’t have one on the back)
  • A towel (for inside areas you don’t want to get wet)


  1. Put a touch of detergent in your bucket, you don’t want it too sudsy, and then fill it with hot water. I use hot water from the tap but if you have a cold hot water service you may want to supplement with a jug of boiled water. There should be some steam rising from it. Don’t use recycled water, this will leave a grey film.
  2. Remove any fly screens if you’re doing windows. If you have unremovable security screens you won’t be able to use this method on the outside.
  3. If you’re doing an inside area put the towel down at the bottom of the window. Wipe the window with a sponge full of water from top to bottom. If it’s a particularly big window you may need to wet the top again before you start the next step or do it in sections, but you should always go top to bottom.
  4. Starting from the top corner, drag the squeegee across the window in a straight line. Repeat the movement further down the window so you still get the line of water left by the last time. Repeat this till the bottom of the window. In the shower or doing mirrors, you may want to drag the squeegee from top to bottom to avoid an awkward corner.
  5. If you’re inside dry up any drips of water left on the bottom of the window.

If you’re anything like me your squeegee action might take a bit of practice before you don’t leave small bits of water on the edge you finish on, if you’re truly a perfectionist you can use something like windex to clean this smaller area and you’ll end up with a better result than if you’d used windex alone.

If you’re doing all your windows, do all the inside before the outside, or change water between doing the outside and inside. If you have a large house with lots of windows you may need to change water halfway through.

What are your tips for doing windows? 

  • Sally

    Thank you for this! My large glass sliding door suffers from DNA (dachshund nose art) and I always struggle to clean it properly with chemical window cleaners. I’ll try this on the weekend. :)

  • vanessay

    If you put in a tablespoon of Dishwasher Rinse Aid (cheap generic stuff will do) it gets your windows really clean. Our windows get bad stains from the bore water we use to water the garden and it gets them sparkling clean.

    • http://kikiandtea.com/ Tamsin Howse

      Rinse aid!! It’s so logical!


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