I’m getting a bit of cabin fever here. We’ve had a pretty nasty winter and that could be part of the reason why I’m getting anxious to get going on my spring cleaning.
One of the spring cleaning chores that, in my opinion, yields the greatest reward is washing the windows. After a few months of winter weather, the windows always look so dirty and there is nothing cleaner looking than a crystal clear view out of a window.
It may be another whole month before I can even think about attempting to wash the outside of my windows, but I was already contemplating the best way to go about washing windows in cold weather. I did a little bit of research and came up with a couple rather bizarre suggestions and was wondering if anyone has actually tried them. Here they are:
1) Use automobile windshield washer fluid with anti-freeze for windows outside. This makes sense, yes, but what are the negatives? I can think of one right out of the gate, which is that anti-freeze is poisonous to animals. So, if there are pets wandering around the yard, anti-freeze puddling at the base of the windows would not be a good idea. You may be able to avoid that by putting down a tarp or papers to catch the drips and promptly removing them. Has anyone had experience with this method?
2) Adding alcohol to a regular vinegar and water solution is another suggestion. I’m assuming that would be rubbing alcohol. Aside from the odor, what would be the disadvantage to this method?
3) Salt added to water may also work for cold weather window washing. Dissolve a generous amount of salt in a spray bottle filled with water. This method sounds reasonable, but I’m not convinced it would clean as well as the vinegar and alcohol mixture. What do you think?
One thing that is agreed upon by everyone I’ve talked to is that hot water on cold glass is a no-no. Glass expands and contracts with hot and cold so a blast of hot water on cold glass could cause damage like cracking. As a rule of thumb, never wash your windows when it is below freezing (32 degrees F) outside.
It seems that, in order to avoid problems, you should wait for warm weather to wash the outside of your windows. However, there are methods for washing your windows if you absolutely need to in temperatures that are cold, but above freezing. Once the weather improves and reaches a reasonable temperature, I think I’ll give one of these methods a try on one of my smaller windows. Not only am I curious, but I’m anxious to get my windows sparkling again. Spring can’t come too soon!
p.s. If you’re anxious to start scraping away the winter dirt, check out these Spring Cleaning Tips For Mom and start planning for your first warm day, too!