Hand in pink glove uses squeegee to clean window without leaving streaks

Get Your Windows Clean Without Those Annoying Streaks

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Anyone else get tired of finding streaks on their windows after washing them? They used to drive me mad, those streaks. Then I realized the problem was using the old-school methods, like newspapers.

So, after trial and error cleaning all 37 windows in my home inside and out for years, I’ve learned that the best way to prevent streaks on windows involves using the right technique.

Wash Windows Without Leaving Streaks

Step 1: Make your cleaning solution

A bucket of water with a couple of drops of liquid dish soap is all you usually need. Skip the plant-based dish soaps like for this—they have oils that will leave streaks. If your windows are very grimy, try my homemade window cleaner that cuts through that stuff.

Step 2: Don’t make mud

You know the deal: dust or dirt plus liquid turns to mud. You don’t want that kind of streaks on your windows, either. So, sweep away cobwebs and other debris before you start.

Step 3: Put down protection.

If you’re cleaning the inside, cover the ledge or floor with a towel. For tilt-ins, put a tall stool or chair on the towel so you can lean the window on it. Outside, move things out of the way before you get started.

Step 4: Scrub and squeegee

Dip a sponge into the homemade window cleaning mixture and scrub the window, then pull the squeegee left to right across the glass. Work all the way down the window.

Wipe your squeegee blade occasionally, so it stays clean and dry. Wet squeegees leave streaks, too.

Step 5: Switch it up

When you’re ready to clean the other side of the window, use the squeegee from top to bottom. This way, if you do happen to leave a streak, you’ll know which side it’s on so you can quickly clean it.

The Right Weather for Washing Windows

Sunny days are not the best weather for window washing. That’s because the sun heats the glass, so the cleaning solution evaporates fast and—you guessed it—that causes streaks.

I try to do this on overcast days when there’s no rain in the forecast or when the sun has been on the other side of the house long enough that the windows are cool.

How Often Should You Clean Windows?

There’s no such thing as cleaning windows too often. You can clean them too rarely, though.

Wash your windows at least twice a year to keep grime from permanently etching them. If that happens, instead of worrying about streaks on your windows, you’ll be cussing up a streak instead. (See what I did there?)

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