How To Clean Windows With Extension Poles

Easy to follow instructions on cleaning hard to reach windows using common cleaning items. Plus tips on interior and exterior cleaning.

You may have noticed that many new homes built today are boasting large floor to ceiling windows. Especially in rooms outfitted with cathedral ceilings, these windows give both light and warmth to a room. Handsome as they are, the owners of these picturesque windows soon discover one drawback to their high-ceilinged d├ęcor, and that is cleaning them. Cleaning these windows have many scratching their heads. Step ladders are just not high enough, and getting down and moving the ladder an inch or two in each direction made for more work than the actual cleaning. So, what to do? The answer is luckily readily available, inexpensive, and easy to use. Telescoping rods used for cleaning was the answer. The window used for our test was seventeen feet at the highest point, and twelve feet at the center of the room.

The materials are relatively easy to find. Any large hardware store will stock extendable aluminum rods. For our purpose, I found a telescoping sponge mop, extending to fifteen feet. Plain ammonia and water is best for window cleaning, and plain paper towels to be used for the drying.

Using a medium-sized bucket, first mix one part ammonia with four parts water - in other words, a cup of ammonia to a quart of water. Do not add any soap or other additives, as they will create streaks on the windows. Thoroughly saturate the sponge mop in the cleaning mixture, wringing out any excess liquid before applying to the glass. Depending on your height, you may use a small step stool to reach the top of your window. Starting at the highest point, using downward strokes, coat the window generously with the cleaning solution. Removing the rest of the liquid from the sponge using the wringer which usually comes with a sponge mop, wrap the head of the mop loosely with several layers of paper towel. Again starting from the highest point, using downward strokes, dry the window using the mop now covered in the paper towels. Repeat as necessary.

You will be amazed at how this simple, inexpensive method compares with other, high-priced solutions. Repeat on all windows inside your home. Now, we will turn our focus to the outdoors.

The easiest solution requires the following: a garden hose, the same cleaning solution used on the inside of the home, and an empty hose-driven plant food bottle. These bottles are used for spreading plant food in gardens. They attach directly to your hose, and usually have an on and off nozzle. Some hardware stores sell them empty, and some sell a commercial window cleaning product in the same bottle. You may want to use the commercial product, and then simply refilling it with your own cleaning solution. Once you have your materials assembled and all your windows closed tightly, fill the bottle with the cleaning solution and attach it to the hose. Make sure the nozzle is in the OFF position, and turn on the water. Aim your nozzle at the highest point of the window, turn the nozzle to the ON position, and simply spray the window with the solution, concentrating more heavily on soiled areas. Repeat this procedure on all windows, using the mixture generously. Once you have treated all windows with the cleaning solution, remove the bottle from the hose, and rinse the windows with plain water. Allow the windows to dry before opening, repeating the procedure if any windows do not appear to be clean. This method works beautifully, cleaning your outdoor window screens as an added bonus!

After your windows have thoroughly dried, open them, and clean the inside sash, removing any water which may have accumulated during the cleaning process.

Finally, stand back and enjoy the look of your beautiful, streak free windows!

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