By Marci Seither, Contributing Writer
“I do windows,” is not a statement you hear every day. While some avoid having to tackle windows at any cost, I really don’t mind. Really.
I grew up washing windows. My parents made stained glass panels for doors, skylights, and windows that required glazing. Unlike a spiral cut ham, the glaze was a slurry of clay substance that was pushed under the lead channels that divided individual glass pieces. The whole window was then sprinkled with a drying power, rubbed, and finally scrubbed off. The glazing was vital to the strength of the window. The glazing substance left a distinct gray haze on the glass that required a good cleaning. Once the light came though, you could appreciate the texture and colors of the glass.
I think the reason I never minded cleaning the glass was because I knew the results would be worth it.
The reality is that sometimes we have to do things that are necessary, even though it creates more dirt to clean up. Sometimes dirt just happens.
That is how I feel about the windows in my house.
It is amazing how subtly the dirt and dust can build up on windows. We don’t really notice it because it happens gradually. We are used to seeing things a little jaded due to the distraction and it isn’t like we can fully prevent it. Wind, mixed with dust and rain quickly ruins previously clean view of the outside world. Peanut butter smudged hand prints on sliding glass doors are a reminder that life with little ones is a full time occupation.
It can be a constant battle trying to keep everything clean, but it doesn’t have to be an uphill battle.
It is a little like our hearts. Sometimes, the things that give us strength are messy and need cleaning up to reveal true colors. Sometimes, our hearts get dirty from the inside by little things we often overlook. Sometimes, just by being exposed to the elements, things get dingy on the outside. We don’t have to wait for “Spring Cleaning”. We can and should examine our home and hearts often and take action.
So grab your squeegee and let’s get started.
Psalms 51:10 “Create in me a clean heart O God; and renew a right spirit within me.”
One of the reasons cleaning windows can be difficult is that it is hard to make sure there are not streaks or pieces of fine lint.
Part of the problem is that it is hard to find a solution that really cleans and the tool to clean with.
I researched several recipes for DIY cleaning solution, and this is one I created. I think it works the best! I use a squeegee and a cleaning rag to catch the drips and wipe the blade. No more going through a roll of paper towels every time I clan doors and windows. Better for cleaning and better on the budget.
Recipe approx.. cost per bottle is 50 cents. That is a huge savings over buying window cleaner and I love how it leaves my stainless steel kitchen appliances looking as well.
XTREME GREEN OPTION: Many of the recipes that were dubbed “Green” did not have the added jet blue or rinse agent. After trying several recipes for homemade window cleaner I ended up using a combination. While the solution without the rinse agent worked, it required being quicker on wiping up and lines, streaks, or spills.
I figured there might be some chemicals in the rinse- but when I considered that my kids have lapped water out of the dog dish at some point in their childhood, I am okay with using small amounts of cleaning additives every now and again. BUT, that boundary is yours to make so do what you feel is best for your family.
Urban Retro DIY Window Cleaner
2/12 cups water
1 cup white vinegar
½ cup rubbing alcohol
1 Tbs. cornstarch
1 Tbs. jet dry liquid.
Mix in a 32 oz. squirt bottle and make sure you shake gently before using.
Watch my video on how to make my DIY window cleaner and my 4 simple steps for cleaning windows.
Cleaning Windows in 4 simple steps
1. Squirt windows with cleaner.
2. Wash with the sponge side of squeegee or with a micro-towel used for washing cars.
3. Move rubber blade of squeegee across the window and repeat.
4. Wipe edge of windows and enjoy the view!
The best way to clean second story windows is to pull the sliding window out and set it in the room. Clean the stationary window on both sides, the sliding window on both sides and then replace.
Since you already have to take the screen out to get the window out, go ahead and give that a little attention as well.
Cleaning windows allows the light to fully shine in. Cleaning our hearts does the same. The effort will be worth it.