There is rarely a day here in Nebraska that the wind does not blow. Combine that with dry conditions and the fact that we live out in the country with ZERO trees nearby and you get silt in every possible place you can imagine. If it does manage to rain, you can count on the wind to blow mud straight at the house making it look as though someone took a spray bottle filled with mud and sprayed all your windows.
I try to resist the urge to clean the outside of the windows and screens of our home more than 3 times a year, but just like washing your car is sure to bring rain, washing my windows greatly increases the probability of a splattering of mud all over the windows of our home :-/
Here is a look at some of the tools I use to keep up with the seemingly constant task. I like to use a wide handled razor blade to clean the outside of the windows, the inside has window film so an all-natural glass cleaner and a micro fiber towel do the trick there. We no longer have really little ones at home, yet there are CONSTANTLY finger prints and smudges on the windows, sometimes even lip prints! (I am pretty sure they see me clean the windows and then touch them just for fun!) I use a magic eraser for the window sills and jams and my hand held part of my steam mop for the screens.
When using a razor blade to clean the exterior of your windows, you simply spray your favorite cleaner on the windows and then carefully begin at the top at gently scrape downward. If you are worried about using such a sharp object, you can also use a non-abrasive sponge. I use an all-natural window cleaner from Melaleuca called Clean Power. It comes in a 16oz bottle ($6) that we then dilute into our spray bottle using distilled water. One bottle of concentrate makes us 10-12 16oz spray bottles of cleaner. This not only makes it cost effective, but reduces waste and provides us a way to clean our windows without harsh chemicals. Read my post about converting our home to earth friendly cleaning products here.
Next I remove the window sash that slides open and steam the screens and jams. I absolutely LOVE my steam mop! We have the Shark brand and it has a detachable hand held part that has attachments that make cleaning simple and effective as well as the option to steam drapes & clothes.
You can see below that the jams have scrapes from opening and closing the windows. I use the magic eraser to clean these marks, it works like a charm! I find that having the right tools makes the job easier and okay, maybe a little fun too 😉
I hope you have picked up a tip or two to help you keep your windows & screens clean and looking like they did the day they were installed.