Let the sun shine in! Enviro-friendly tips for sparkling windows

clean windowsNow that the snow is almost gone, it’s time to get your house in tip-top condition for spring! If you are selling your house, don’t overlook the importance of sparkling clean windows. Dirty, dusty windows have the potential to decrease the value of your house. Clean windows, however, are one of the most effective improvements that can potentially fetch you a higher selling price. According to a survey published in Money Magazine, cleaning your windows can snag you an up to 768% return on investment.

If your windows gleam, rooms will be brighter and more inviting to potential buyers. Bright rooms also help to highlight details that may have been overlooked in poor light – things like fresh paint jobs and beautiful hardwood.

Tips for cleaning window glass (while saving money and protecting the environment at the same time)

Forget the blue stuff! These days, it’s not necessary to spend a bunch of money on harsh cleaning products when you can easily mix up an environmentally-friendly cleaning solution using products you likely already have in your cupboard: white vinegar and dish soap.

  • If you haven’t given your windows a good scrub in a while, you’ll want to include dish soap in your mixture – it’ll take care of any waxy buildup. Mix ¼ cup white vinegar, ¼ to ½ teaspoon eco-friendly dish detergent, and 2 cups water.
  • Rub at stubborn spots with undiluted vinegar on a rag or lint-free cloth.
  • If your windows are cleaned often, or aren’t that dirty, mix 2 teaspoons white vinegar in 1L of warm water.
  • Apply the solution with a rag, and wipe it off with a good squeegee (a MUST for streak-free windows). If you don’t have access to a squeegee, go for something lint-free, such as a coffee filter or a microfibre cloth, in order to minimize streaking.
  • Don’t wash or dry microfibre cloths with fabric softener – it contains an agent that will cause streakiness.
  • Try to wash windows on a cloudy day. The sun dries windows quickly, causing streaks.
Don’t forget about the outside
  • Take your screens off and give them a good cleaning. They can be rinsed with warm, soapy water. Use a soft bristle brush to really get at the dirt, and then give them a good rinse with water before leaving them to dry.
  • Apply a coat of floor wax to your window sills – this will help to protect them from the elements, and you won’t have to clean them as often. (Bonus!)
Don’t neglect your shades

Cleaning the glass and ignoring the dusty shade is akin to showering and putting on dirty clothes – gross!

  • Dust your soft window shades with a soft cloth, a Swiffer, or your vacuum’s dusting brush.
  • Vinyl blinds are easily dusted, and for more stubborn stains, give them a bath in warm water and dish soap. Let them soak, then rinse them off and towel dry.

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