NOVATO – If you want to maintain your windows in between professional cleanings, you’ll need to have the right cleaning tools and techniques at your disposal. Start with the tools: Go to your local hardware store and pick up a strip washer (sort of like a mop that’s used on windows) and a squeegee. Once you have your tools, follow this technique:
1. Use your strip washer to wet and scrub the window. If you have baked-on dirt, you can use some #4 steel wool (the finest grade available) to get more abrasive power.
2. Starting at the top of the window, use your squeegee to “fan” the window by moving briskly from one side to the other in a downward direction. This will displace moisture and allow the window to dry without leaving fibers or smudges. As an alternative to fanning, you can also do a straight pull: Starting at the top, pull your squeegee straight across the window, then down to the bottom. Use a towel to wipe the moisture off your squeegee, then repeat this across-and-down motion until you’ve covered the entire window.
3. Towel the edges of the window frame and sill. While your squeegee will catch most of the moisture, there’s likely to be some remaining in the frame’s edges and corners. You can collect this residual moisture by going along the frame and sill with a towel.