How to Clean Double-Hung Windows

October 10, 2010

Cleaning double-hung windows is easy on single-story homes or any home with tilt-in windows. Otherwise an extension ladder may not be tall enough to reach the top panes, and it's safer to hire the job done.

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Window Cleaning Necessities

Keep all window washing gear stored together. That will include:

  1. A soft broom and brush
  2. A 2-gallon bucket, natural sponge, liquid dish detergent, and 3 or 4 lint-free towels
  3. A telescoping arm and/or sponge mop for tall, reachable windows
  4. Large and small squeegees
  5. The finest grade steel wool and a single-edge razor holder

Steps for Cleaning Double-Hung Windows

Pane size doesn't matter for cleaning techniques, nor for inside versus outside. Use a smaller squeegee for smaller panes.

  1. Thoroughly sweep or brush all window frames.
  2. Add just 3 or 4 drops of detergent to 2 gallons of water.
  3. Wet a towel and wipe down all frame parts.
  4. Use a wet sponge to wash only what will stay wet long enough to squeegee.
  5. With a dry towel, dry a 2" strip across the top and down one side of the pane.
  6. Keeping one end of the squeegee dry on dry glass, start at the dry top and pull the squeegee down in slightly overlapping strokes.
  7. Remove bug spots with dry steel wool on dry glass. Remove paint or tape with razor on wet glass.
  8. Wipe the framework dry with a dry towel.

Never aim a hose spray upwards on clapboard siding. Water can get trapped behind and cause mold and rot. Instead, for high windows use a sponge mop and a squeegee on a telescoping arm for cleaning and drying.


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