Window Cleaning Solutions

From summer rain to the garden sprinkler – summer takes a toll on windows.

Teresa Hunsaker from USU Extension shares secrets for getting those windows sparkly clean.

As summer is winding down, and the kids are back in school, you will have more time to notice the toll the summer rains and dust storms, sprinkling systems, and kids have had on your windows.

Here are some solutions to help:

Cleaner #1
½ tsp liquid dish detergent
2 cups water
¼ cup vinegar
Mix in a spray bottle and wash window using a soft rag or brush. Rinse and dry.

Cleaner #2
½ bottle of Jet Dry
4 TBS rubbing alcohol
¼ cup ammonia
1/3 cup powdered dishwasher detergent
2 gallons of water
Mix all ingredients together, making sure dish detergent is dissolved. Wash windows with water first, just to remove main layer of dirt and grime. Then using a soft brush or rag wash down the windows. Use a hose to rinse off. Water will sheet right off and there will be no need to dry.

Cleaner #3
4 TBSP cornstarch
¾ cup rubbing alcohol
¾ cup white vinegar
scant 1 gallon warm water
Mix the ingredients in a bucket, make sure cornstarch is thoroughly dissolved before using.

Cleaner #4
3 TBS lemon juice (freshly squeezed)
2 cups club soda
1 tsp cornstarch
Pour everything into a spray bottle then shake well before using.


The main thing to keep in mind with hard water buildup on windows it using something acid to breakdown the mineral(alkaline) deposit, and something mildly abrasive—something like baking soda, cornstarch, steel wool, OR a very mild cleanser. Personally, I like toothpaste and the finest steel wool (or nylon dish scrubber) used in combination with the following solution.

Cleaning Solution for Hard Water Spots:

1 cup water

1 cup vinegar

Combine and place in a spray bottle. Spray your problem windows with the solution and rub with 4 ought (0000)steel wool. Using a little of the above mentioned abrasives would not be a problem.

Once the window is clean, to help keep the water spots from building up so quickly, place a few drops of WD-40 on a rag and rub down the clean window. OR, place a few drops of fabric softener on a rag and rub down the clean window. OR, place a few drops of Jet Dry (for the dishwasher) on a rag and rub down the clean window. Any of these will help the water to sheet off the window. This doesn’t last forever though, so reapply as needed.

Don’t forget the car windows, either!

Cleaning Solution for Car Windows:

1 gallon container…an old window washer fluid bottle works great

1 TBS liquid dish detergent
½ cup non-sudsing ammonia
2 TBS rubbing alcohol
Mix up this solution and use in your car window washer dispenser.

Bonus tips:
· Coffee filters used to dry and polish the window gives streak free results.
· Wash one side of the glass in an up and down direction, on the other side rub side to side. This will help determine which side has the streaks that need to be polished out.
· Don’t use rags that have fabric softener in them…not as absorbent.
· For any recipe using cornstarch you will need to stir or shake the solution well before each use…cornstarch settles to the bottom.

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