How To Clean And Maintain Vinyl Windows

If you're looking to replace your home's windows, you'll have several options available. Vinyl windows may be the right choice as they're known to be durable, energy-efficient and affordable. They also come in a wide array of styles to fit with your house's overall design.

You'll be able to choose between all-vinyl and vinyl-clad windows, depending on your personal preference and remodeling budget. The windows are easy to customize, allowing you decide on either a sleek, modern look, or a more natural rustic aesthetic. 

When shopping for vinyl windows, you can go to your local do-it-yourself retailer, or order them directly from an online supplier. If you're looking for a harder-to-find design, the later option may be best as it will give you more of a selection to chose from.

Although vinyl is simple to care for and maintain as the material is chip-, fade-, rot- and warp-resistant, there are some basic things you'll need to do on a regular basis to keep them looking and performing their best. As a new vinyl window owner, here are some tips to keep in mind:

1. Daily or Weekly Basis - Interior 

On a daily basis, keep the interior windows clean and dirt- and streak-free by treating them with glass cleaner in a spray bottle and a soft, lint-free rag such as a chamois or microfiber cloth. Simply spray a small amount of product directly onto the debris, such as finger or paw prints, and then wipe it  clean with the rag.

For stubborn marks, mix a 50/50 solution of distilled white vinegar and water, and apply it to the vinyl with a soft sponge. Use a squeegee to remove excess water and dry with a lint-free cloth. Avoid using harsh chemicals, such as bleach or ammonia, which can damage the vinyl and cause unsightly yellowing.

2. Monthly or Semi-Annually Basis - Exterior 

While you won't need to clean your home's exterior windows very often, they will benefit from a monthly or semi-annual wipe down, depending on your location. For instance, a house situation near a major road or highway may be subject to more dirt and grime, such as build-up from vehicle exhaust.

When cleaning the exterior vinyl windows, begin by removing all screens. If your home has multiple levels, start at the top and work your way down. If the windows are very dirty, give them a rinse with hose before cleaning them. Avoid using a pressure washer, which can damage the vinyl and window frames. 

Use a sponge to wipe the windows down with a warm, soapy water and rinse clean with a hose. For high windows, you can use a microfiber cloth mop along with the soap solution. Use a squeegee to remove excess water and then wipe the windows with newspaper for a streak-free finish.