How To Wash Your Windows Like A Pro!
Have you ever spent the day spraying, scrubbing, buffing, polishing and “cleaning” your windows – but in almost no time at all, they attract more dirt back to their surface?
Well, believe it or not, window cleaning chemical companies are smart. They know that if their product (even the “streak-free” kind) is simply buffed on/off with a cloth, chemical residue will remain on the glass and act as a magnet for dirt. This means you have to clean your windows more often – and buy more of their product. Crafty, huh?
As a 2nd generation window cleaner, my customers ask me all the time what our “secret” is to keep windows looking so clean for so long.
The “secret” is not much of a secret at all! Oftentimes consumers who are serious about clean windows already are following the right steps, but they may not be using the right formula.
Well, for us, the “secret” consists of a few things –
TSP (tri-sodium phosphate)
A scrubber & squeegee
A natural sea sponge
I’ll go over these one by one and explain the benefits of each –
Tri-Sodium Phosphate (TSP)
TSP a very generic detergent that is found in all kinds of cleaning formulas.
You can buy it at most general purpose stores or paint stores (Fred Meyers, Wal-Mart, Miller’s). Painters use concentrated formulas to prepare walls and wood for painting. However, when cleaning windows, only a very small amount is needed. About 1 tsp to 1 gallon of hot water – not too much! The less you use – the longer your windows stay clean.
The other reason why professional window cleaners use TSP is that it doesn’t suds up. When soap suds are created, reside is more likely to be left behind on the window – causing windows to attract dirt more quickly.
Scrubber & Squeegee
A good scrubber and squeegee are crucial. Simply buffing a chemical on and off a window is not enough. It will leave residue behind – period.
However, a squeegee removes 99.9% of chemical residue and provides a surface that extremely difficult for dirt to stick to. Make sure you get a squeegee that uses good quality rubber. Shower squeegees are not the same thing!
Believe it or not, you can pick up professional quality scrubber wands and squeegees at hardware stores such as Home Depot or Lowe’s.
Brands that professional window cleaners use, such as myself, are ones such as –
Natural Sea Sponge
OK – I’ll admit it. This might be a little fancy for those who are only washing your windows once in a while. But as a professional who washes thousands of windows a month – I’m picky about my sponges.
Because of how much more absorbent and pliable sea sponges are, they soak up and hold water remarkably well. No synthetic sponge compares. After you squeegee off your window, you are left with a mess of dirty water, and that’s where the sponge comes in. Instead of going through dozens of towels, a simple sponge moves the water back into your bucket with ease.
A Technique Tip
When squeegeeing, make sure and wipe your squeegee with a clean damp sponge before each stroke and pull the squeegee horizontally across the window at an even speed. This technique eliminates streaking. Use a dry, lint free towel to wipe the excess off the windows.
It might take some practice, but over time, you can master window cleaning like the pros. Happy cleaning!