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Cleaning windows with soapy water - washing up liquid and vinegar?

(23 Posts)
lavendersun Thu 07-Apr-16 10:06:56

My windows are dirty, properly dirty, we have just moved house and inherited hundreds (sadly not joking) of small pane Georgian windows.

I started with the kitchen first, they are now clean but streaky and I am sure it was my solution.

Any best mix recommendations? I did a bit of washing up liquid in water with a rinse with clean water and vinegar.

I have just bought myself one of these things, still considering a Karcher window vac but my father has sort of put me off one.

which I hope will do a better job than my shower squeegee thing.

I used to have a window cleaner so am not used to cleaning windows - not interested in commercial coloured water in spray bottles.

peggyundercrackers Thu 07-Apr-16 11:26:53

on the inside I just use vinegar and water, no washing up liquid, then dried of with a scrunched up newspaper.

our windows cleaner uses a squeegee like the one in the link and he doesn't seem to leave streaks but his water doesn't really seem like it has a lot of bubbles in it so maybe that's the reason for no streaks?

lavendersun Thu 07-Apr-16 11:42:14

Peggy - thank you, I really feel like I need a bit of washing up liquid - the windows and frames right next to the glass are black with dirt/dust/condensation/spiders. Is that very wrong grin??

I have taken to wrapping my cloth round a pointy stick to clean in the corners - one room - three hours of my life. I am not particularly house proud but it is oddly satisfying!

ItsAllGoingToBeFine Thu 07-Apr-16 11:49:51

I just use water and an e cloth, but water and vinegar doesn't work well.

I don't actually think the washing up liquid will work on the dirt anyway as its not greasy IYSWIM?

With windows that manky I'd give them a good hard scrub with a dry brush to remove cobwebs/spiders/loose dirt. I'd then turn the hosepipe on them, and then finally do the water and vinegar thing...

ItsAllGoingToBeFine Thu 07-Apr-16 11:50:16

Water and vinegar does work well

peggyundercrackers Thu 07-Apr-16 12:14:48

if they are covered in dirt/spiders webs etc then I would use a small brush in water to remove it all then wash them, if they are that dirty I would expect the cloth would get filthy too quickly.

Voteforpedr0 Thu 07-Apr-16 12:21:48

If they're manky What you need is hot and very soapy water in a big bucket, I find that fairy liquid works best then a large car washing sponge for the cleaner. Use a squeegee to take of then a leather shammy to remove any excess. Works a treat and if you want extra shine use the windowlene spray with dry cloth after

lavendersun Thu 07-Apr-16 14:10:35

Thank you everyone - I reckon I will be just doing multiple cleans in each room - so hot water with washing up liquid and then maybe a couple of washes with water vinegar.

I have bought the window washer thing and holder now after measuring my windows to make sure I can get the 10" thing in the panes - I can in most of them. So another £22 plus £10 yesterday - could have nearly bought a karcher thing have spent far too much time researching window cleaning

its - the insides are worse than the outsides shock - not sure I could bring the hosepipe inside !!!

5Hearts Thu 07-Apr-16 14:17:38

I use hot water with a tiny bit of washing up liquid and vinegar in with the glass cleaning ecloth and then dry with a glass and polishing ecloth (when very dirty, especially outside - if not that dirty then plain water).
I cannot recommend the window cleaning ecloth pack enough (I have several!).

wowfudge Thu 07-Apr-16 18:55:24

Hot water an ecloth work for me. If the windows are greasy, a drop of ammonia is good but don't breathe the fumes and do wear rubber gloves.

lavendersun Fri 08-Apr-16 17:52:56

Pleased to report that the squeegee thing I linked to is fabulous. Really hard rubber that leaves them dry and streak free.

I think it is just going to take two washes because they are so filthy.

Isn't an e cloth just a branded micro fibre cloth, or is it something different?

DanglyEarOrnaments Fri 08-Apr-16 19:43:49

Yes we are cleaners - we used to do End-of-tenancy cleans which can be grim!!

Just wash them down and wash them down just as you describe until you feel them clean enough to then buff with a clean dry microfibre ot towelling cloth, no fancy brand needed just keep washing and drying.

lavendersun Fri 08-Apr-16 19:55:21

You must be brave Dangly smile, I would hate to do other people's end of tenancy clean, especially when someone hasn't taken care of a place.

Thanks for your advice, I am not bothered about things like a branded cloth - have to say that the hard squeegee is amazing.

I will just keep going then - three washes inside and out has done the job ..... but I have only done 2 out of 12 rooms. Not sure what I am going to do about outside upstairs yet, I don't do ladders.

DanglyEarOrnaments Fri 08-Apr-16 20:16:50

I tell you what can help if you don't mind a bit of expense - the Karcher window vac!!

I'm not one for gadgets usually (costs) but this will take off most of the wet after you wash and then you just buff the streaks away. It's one thing we do invest in for our business, it does help a lot!

lavendersun Fri 08-Apr-16 20:46:04

Dangly - I have spent £30 on these pro squeegees and a pro mop thing! Don't mind buying a window vac at all but my dad put me off. Some of the panes are so small that I would have to use it sideways even with the small attachment.

Do you think that would be awkward to use like that?

DanglyEarOrnaments Fri 08-Apr-16 21:14:36

Oh maybe! We just get the standard size for larger windows and hand clean the little panes.

There is no problem with using them sideways as it still cuts labour in half as they will still vac away the excess water after washing instead if you rubbing it round for a while - but before you invest make sure the attachment will fit the panes otherwise complete waste of money!

pearlylum Fri 08-Apr-16 21:26:31

Whichever method you use if you leave the windows wet they will end up streaky.
They need to be buffed dry. You can use a lint free cloth- but you will need many of them. Scrunched up newspaper is best.

lavendersun Fri 08-Apr-16 21:26:49

I will have a look at one in the flesh first I think, thanks.

That was what my Dad said (he has always cleaned their windows), said that the karcher with the small blade would be more trouble than it was worth if I had to use it left to right rather than top to bottom. Their small blade is 6.8 inches and my smallest panes are 6 inches wide.

I have to say though that on my third wash and using the pro squeegee there was hardly any water to deal with because the windows were clean at that point and I was just getting rid of the smears so used a mop with little water with a bit of vinegar.

God, I have spent far too much time thinking about how to get smear free windows this week!

Shame I couldn't bring my window cleaner with me to my new house.

lavendersun Fri 08-Apr-16 21:28:16

They are no longer streaky pearly and I didn't buff them dry, neither did my window cleaner - he used a squeegee like the one I have bought.

Skivvywoman Mon 11-Apr-16 09:46:51

My dh is a window cleaner and he always uses fairy, wash them then dry them shouldn't streak at all

DameDiazepamTheDramaQueen Mon 11-Apr-16 14:13:31

Before I got my karcher, I used hot water with Fairy and a squirt of Rinse aid then buffed with newspaper.

hairymuffet Mon 11-Apr-16 15:30:56

Hot water, small drop of fairy and a good dash of vinegar
E cloth, wash window, and repeat
Wipe over with sqeedgie
Wipe sqeedgie dry.

ProcrastinatorGeneral Tue 12-Apr-16 20:39:43

It's the newspaper that gives the shine. No idea why, but it's essential.

However, I leave it to the window men who come and do it for me grin

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