Smudges on a window can easily impede your view of the great outdoors. When your glass is covered in fingerprints or streaks, it can be impossible to appreciate your view. Clean windows are a hallmark of a tidy home.

However, many struggle to achieve that picture-perfect finish that leaves your glass free of all marks and smudges. Fortunately, there is a method for cleaning your windows with vinegar and Dawn and it has never been easier.

If you are ready to tackle this home cleaning project, you won’t need to look any further. You can clean your windows quickly and efficiently using only a few simple ingredients that you already have lying around your home. The instructions for the perfect window cleaner are compiled in this how-to guide for cleaning your windows with vinegar and Dawn.

Cleaning Windows with Vinegar and Dawn: Necessary Supplies

Are you quick to purchase specialty cleaners that promise to make your glass streak-free and shiny? Some people have an entire cabinet full of special cleaners that make promises like this, but it isn’t truly necessary. You can achieve a clean and sparkling home without investing in an arsenal of cleaners. In fact, you can do a lot with just two ingredients that you likely have on hand – vinegar and Dawn dish soap.

The best type of vinegar to purchase is distilled white vinegar. While other types may do in a pinch, cleaning experts tout the merits of white vinegar above all others. You can purchase it by the gallon rather inexpensively, including this organic version (on Amazon) that comes in around under five dollars.

If the pungent smell of vinegar bothers you, consider investing in scented vinegar. Many of these products have added ingredients such as essential oils that can make your home smell fabulous while you clean. You get all the benefits of distilled white vinegar without the aroma that permeates your entire home. Brands like Harris offer lavender-scented cleaning vinegar, as well as lemon.

Dawn dish soap is another key ingredient that you may already have on hand. This cleaner comes in a variety of scents, so make sure to choose one that really appeals to you:

  • Apple Blossom
  • Pomegranate Splash
  • Orange
  • Lemon Essence

View all Dawn products and scents, and stock up on their Amazon Store.

You can get to know the brand on their website.

cleaning with vinegar

How to Clean Windows with Vinegar

If you only happen to have vinegar on hand, you can still clean your windows until they shine. All you need is a spray bottle, a sponge, some distilled white vinegar, and tap water. Then, you can follow these instructions to get sparkling windows each and every time:

  1. Prepare your solution. Fill the spray bottle with half vinegar and half water. You may also pour the mixture into a bucket so that you can more easily fill your sponge with cleaning solution in the next step. It is best to use hot water for cleaning your windows.
  2. Soak your windows with the cleaner. Spritz your vinegar and water solution onto a sponge until it is thoroughly wet or dip the sponge into the bucket of solution. Apply the cleaner to the windows and then dry thoroughly using a microfiber cloth or paper towel. Do this only when there is no direct sunlight on the glass.
  3. Rinse the window frames. Ensure that your window frames do not warp or get ruined by the cleaning solution. Rinse them with clean water and dry them thoroughly.

Using a Squeegee

Unger Professional Microfiber Window Squeegee

You might also want to use a squeegee instead of a sponge. Many people prefer this method to get a streak-free finish on their windows. You can purchase a tool that allows you to scrub the glass and squeeze off the cleaner all in one. This model from Unger is perfect for cleaning your windows quickly and efficiently.

When you clean with a squeegee, you will first dampen it with the vinegar cleaning solution. Work on cleaning the windows from the top down. Between each stroke of the squeegee, be sure to wipe off the edges to prevent runs and streaks on your newly washed windows.

Place a towel along the windowsill to catch any of the water runoff from the squeegee. This can protect the wooden encasement around your windows from swelling, discoloration, and other nasty side effects of absorbing too much moisture. Always be sure to dry your window casings and windowsills thoroughly when you finish cleaning.

Cleaning Windows with Vinegar and Dawn Solution

Cleaning Windows with Vinegar and Dawn Solution

If you still have trouble with cleaning your windows, you might need a stronger cleaning solution than vinegar alone. Professional window cleaners recommend adding a secret ingredient to your homemade window cleaner: Dawn dish soap. You will prepare the cleaner with equal parts of hot water and distilled white vinegar. Finally, add in one teaspoon of Dawn dish soap.

The process for cleaning the windows will be very much the same:

  1. Prepare your vinegar and Dawn cleaning solution and water bottle. In a bucket or spray bottle, mix together your cleaning solution. You will also need a separate spray bottle or bucket of clean water readily available to rinse the cleaner from the windows. This simple act reduces the streaks and water spots on the windows at the end of your cleaning.
  2. Scrub the windows. Using your scrub brush and squeegee all-in-one tool, gently scrub at the windows to loosen up grime and dirt.
  3. Rinse it off. Before the cleaner has an opportunity to dry, you need to spray it down with clean water and squeeze the soap away. If you are cleaning indoor windows, then you may use a spray bottle. For those who are cleaning the outside of their windows, you might want to consider spraying them down with a hose.

Things to Avoid

You should avoid cleaning your windows with this type of cleaner when they are in direct sunlight. The sun can make the glass very warm and cause soap products to dry too quickly on the windows. It is best to do this type of cleaning in the early morning or evening after the sun has set for the day.

Be careful not to get your windowsill too wet during this cleaning process. Fold up an old towel along the windowsill to catch some of the water and soap that may trickle down the glass while you are cleaning. This can prevent damage to the windowsill and make it easier to clean up your mess when you are finished.

Troubleshooting Your Windows

Do you have a few stubborn spots on your windows that simply won’t come clean? Even with these powerful homemade cleaners, you might still have some dirt and grime that have built up on your windows over the years. You may need to troubleshoot some of these areas with a little extra help.

It can help to prewash your windows before spritzing them down with the vinegar solution. Prepare the Dawn dish soap and vinegar cleaner to scrub your windows as the first step. Make sure to thoroughly rinse the cleaner off the glass. When you finish with this, the windows should be noticeably cleaner, but you can achieve a picture-perfect finish by spraying them down with just vinegar and water solution to finish. Remember to dry the glass thoroughly.

If a few stubborn spots still remain on your window, you might need to apply a little force. Soak a rag in straight distilled white vinegar. Apply the cloth over the stubborn spot and allow it to stay there for thirty seconds to a minute. Scrub hard over the stubborn spot that has now been loosened by the vinegar. This should eliminate any trouble spots that don’t immediately go away with these cleaners.

Consider what type of materials you are using to wash the windows. Sometimes, you might find that your windows are still streaky after you finish cleaning them. If you are drying them with a clean microfiber cloth, you might need to consider what might be on the cloth. Washing and drying the cloth with fabric softener could be the culprit of your streaks. The fabric softener can leave a residue on your windows that appears as new streaks on your freshly cleaned glass.

Using Newspaper with Your Vinegar and Dawn Cleaner

For years, people have been espousing the benefits of cleaning your windows with newspapers instead of paper towels. They argue that paper towels can leave lint and streaks on the windows as you are attempting to dry off the vinegar and Dawn cleaner. While this is not always true, you do have an alternative available. Many people use newspapers to dry their windows.

Using newspaper will not leave streaks on the glass

If you have leftover newspapers floating around your house, you might want to try this trick for cleaning windows with vinegar and Dawn.

Start by applying the cleaner to the windows, just as you did with other methods. You may choose to use a spray bottle to spritz the window with the vinegar and Dawn cleaner. Others will choose to lightly dip their newspaper into a bucket of the cleaner before applying it directly to the glass.

Rub your windows with the newspaper in a circular motion to get help to loosen up caked-on dirt and smudges. As the glass begins to dry, switch to regular vertical and horizontal strokes to avoid a streaky finish. Keep going until all of the cleaners have evaporated from the windows for the best results.

Keep in mind that the newsprint may rub off onto your windowsill and window casings, particularly if they are white. This might be extremely noticeable and difficult to remove when you are finished. Take care not to let the wet newspaper come in contact with these white areas while you are cleaning. If you are not sure that you can do that, you may want to consider using a paper towel that does not leave behind these unsightly dark marks.

Things to Remember

Are you ready to get started with cleaning windows with vinegar and Dawn? Here are a few last-minute tips and tricks to help you get the most out of your cleaning experience.

  • Identifying Streaks: If you clean both the inside and the outside of your windows, it is recommended that you use strokes in different directions. For example, you may choose to use vertical strokes for cleaning the interior windows and horizontal strokes for the exterior. This allows you to quickly identify where the streaks occur, should you see any when you finish with the entire process.
  • Protect Your Floors: Cleaning windows is a messy business for a lot of people, particularly until they gain more experience. Make sure to put down a drop cloth or a sheet to protect your floors from the cleaning solutions. This is important for all flooring types from carpet to hardwood. It can prevent stains and residue build-up on the floors that could take hours to scrub away or could become permanent.
  • Clean the Whole Window: It makes sense to clean the entire window at the same time as cleaning the glass. Use a vacuum with an attachment to suction dirt out of the window tracks. Brush away cobwebs and dust the ledges of the casing surrounding the window. Make sure that everything is clean before you start cleaning the glass. You may need to use an old toothbrush to get into those hard-to-reach areas.
  • Clean the Edges First: Experts recommend that you clean the edges of the window panes first before you move on to the center. Remember to wipe your squeegee down in between strokes.

Tackling Your Cleaning Project

Your home can finally sparkle in the sunlight once again when you start cleaning windows with a vinegar and Dawn solution. These two simple ingredients combine with water to create a powerful cleaning concoction that banishes streaks and smudges for good. With the right tools and equipment, you can achieve a streak-free finish that makes your home feel instantly cleaner and more inviting.

Next time you need to tackle a major cleaning project, try using Dawn dish soap and vinegar to get rid of those tough stains and dirty spots. You will be pleasantly surprised to see how much easier your cleaning job is to handle with this simple homemade cleaner!

Last update on 2024-05-01 at 10:28 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API