Once the sun comes out, you can't help but notice those dirty windows! Since I work from home, I'm staring out my window all day long. Also, I'm always looking for some dumb excuse to leave my desk and go do something else.
About a month ago I cleaned my windows the usual way - with Windex and paper towels. Not only is this method wasteful, but it didn't work! I kept getting streaks and a leftover haze, no matter how hard I scrubbed. I even tried newspaper - I hate cleaning windows with newspaper, but I know a lot of people who swear by it. Personally, I cannot stand the feel of wet newspaper. It's just a thing I have, you know?
So there I was, infuriated and frustrated and upset at myself for having wasted so much time I should have spent working. I finally resorted to the almighty Google, and I was Shown The Way.
To clean windows properly, you need a small bucket, a little bit of liquid dishwashing detergent, and a squeegee. If you don't have a squeegee around the house, you may object to the idea of buying one just for your windows. But think of all the money you'll save on paper towels over the years to come!
1. Add a little bit of dishwashing detergent to a bucket of warm water. Not much - maybe a teaspoon for a three gallon bucket.
2. Use a rag or a special fluffy thing to get the soapy water onto the window. (I have an extension pole that came with a window cleaning kit, so the fluffy thing was included. It's probably not worth buying the fluffy thing if you can just reach your windows by hand with a rag.)
3. Remove the water with the squeegee. At the end of each stroke, wipe the squeegee on a dry towel. This part is key! It prevents drips from marring your beautiful windows.
This method is easy, and it works so well! I was astonished at how clean it left my windows, after just one pass with the rag and squeegee. And there was no waste - just a few things to throw into the laundry.
The real mystery is, why does Windex work so badly on windows? Particularly considering the expense! If I'm going to spend that much money on a bottle of Windex, compared to a little dash of liquid dish soap, it had better work darned well! Having washed my windows this way, I'm flabbergasted that Windex is even sold any more. Not only that, but it's constantly branching out into different formulas. Windex Fragrance Sensations! Windex No-Drip With Foaming Action!
Has the world gone mad? How many times do we need to buy a product labeled "streak-free," which leaves streaks, before we come to our senses? In my case, it was a lot. A lot times. But brothers and sisters, I have seen the light!
Join me, won't you? Break free of your window cleaning shackles! Cleaning the windows doesn't have to be a chore. It goes by in a flash if you do it properly, and I promise you will be astonished by the results.
Creative Commons-licensed image courtesy of Flickr user D Sharon Pruitt