How To Clean Your Wood Blinds

Keeping wood blinds clean and dust free will not only make them look better, it will also make them last longer. Advice on products and materials.

Wood blinds make beautiful window treatments if they are well maintained. Wood blinds, like other wood furniture and accessories, need special care.

The following tips will help you maintain your wood blinds and keep them looking great:

Before cleaning your blinds, you may want to lay an old sheet down under them to catch any dust or dirt that falls. When finished, take the sheet outside, shake it out, and move on to the next set of blinds. Clean wood blinds frequently to avoid dirty build up. If you don't have time for a thorough cleaning, at least dust them. Even closing the blinds and running a duster over them weekly will make a difference. Feather dusters tend to scatter dust, so use cloth, wool, or "magnet" dusters. These tools will pull the dust away from the blinds, but it will collect on the surface of the duster instead of flying around the room. Take the duster outside and shake it, or brush off the surface, before attempting to use it on another set of blinds.



To keep wood blinds in excellent condition vacuum on a regular basis. Using the brush attachment on your vacuum cleaner, gently vacuum each slat, front and back. How often you should vacuum will be determined by how dusty your blinds get. A good rule of thumb, is to vacuum them at least once per month. It will be obvious if it needs to be done more frequently. Blinds can also be cleaned with a soft cloth. Do not use a wax based furniture polish for cleaning. Wax will simply seal in the dirt. Once the blinds are clean, a polish or wax may be used sparingly. There are also specially treated dusting cloths you can purchase. Just throw in the washer when finished, and use the same cloth over and over.

A pair of cotton mitts or gloves can also be used to clean wood blinds. Put the mitts on and rub a fabric softener sheet between your hands. This will help limit static and will help the dust stick to the gloves instead of scattering. Next, gently run your hands over each slat until clean. Never soak wood blinds. In fact, it is not a good idea to use water to clean them, or to get them wet at all. Once wet, wood can loose its shape and warp easily.

For extra dirty blinds, a soft paintbrush the width of your slats makes a great cleaning tool (make sure you lay something down underneath the blinds when using this technique). You may want to dip the end of the brush in a bit of fabric softener to help keep dust from scattering. Dip the brush then rub it on a clean cloth to remove excess. Stop and clean the paintbrush off as needed. A small amount of oil soap may also be used for really dirty blinds. Wipe until the blinds look clean then grab a clean cloth and gently rub any remaining oil into the wood. Oil soap is also a good choice if your blinds appear to be dry.

While it is always best to clean each slat one at a time front and back, don't forget to close the blinds and gently wipe the whole set afterwards. This will help insure that you haven't missed a spot. After cleaning, to prevent build up and to keep wood blinds dust free longer, wipe them with a bit of fabric softener. This will help limit static electricity. Static attracts more dust. You can gently rub the blinds with a dryer sheet, or you can dip a soft cloth in a bit of liquid softener. Wring the cloth well, and make sure it is just barely damp with softener. As noted, it is never good to get wood blinds wet.

© High Speed Ventures 2011