Using cloudy and rainy days to prevent the sunlight from shining in our homes, Old Man Winter does a great job of making sure we don’t notice the smudges, the streaks, the dust, the dog’s slobber and the grime coating our windows.
Then, spring arrives with birds singing and rays of beautiful sunlight and you open your curtains or blinds to discover each and every fingerprint, smudge, spot, speck of dirt and more. The sunlight makes it obvious your windows are dirty and the dirt does prevent the sunlight from shining in.
Spring cleaning wouldn’t be complete without washing the windows. Yet the question becomes: Is this a task you want to tackle – knowing you have to clean inside and outside, remove storm windows, clean inside the tracks and remove and clean the screens?
At ABC Window Cleaners & Building Maintenance, we can take care of any – and when I say any I mean any – cleaning needed. But windows, windows are something we are quite good at cleaning, whether it’s a tall office building or a single story home.
Did you know window cleaning has been around well let’s just say longer than Martha Stewart began making checklists of what to clean each month in her magazine Martha Stewart’s Living.
A little research discovered glass was once as rare and precious a commodity as gold. It took years of developing it from what looks like the bottom of a glass bottle to the smooth panes we have today.
While today we think of windows as just something every house or business has, there was a time when homes didn’t have glass windows, instead just a space covered with a shutter or animal hide during the night or cold winter months.
Even in the mid-16th century when window glass became common, it was only for the wealthy. Even then, it was still a luxury with glass windows only being in the most important rooms. For aristocrats who went from their country to their city estates, window glass was so precious that their servants removed the windows and stored them when they were not at their estate. And we think washing windows is a chore. Can you even imagine having to remove and replace windows each time the “master” arrived back at his estate?
We can thank the French for discovering how to make flat and clear panes of glass, which they did for Versailles, built in the 1680s. Yet still due to the time and process to make glass windows, it was something only the well-to-do could afford.
It wasn’t until modern machinery was created to produce smooth, continuous sheets of molten glass that it could be affordable for the common people to have glass windows in their homes. Think about this – it was in the early 1800s that the first inexpensive rolled window glass became available.
And with each invention, comes more inventions. The first glass windows in grand estates and churches were cleaned using a bucket, a rag, some water with a cleaning solution and a ladder.
Today, most people use some paper towels, spray cleaner and elbow grease. All that does is move dirt around and attracts more dirt, making it look like you haven’t washed your windows. And having to do it again.
There truly is an art to window washing. While it may look simple, there is a technique to get the windows clean.
While we would love to take this chore off your list, we understand window washing may be something you want to do. Here are a few tips:
1. How often should I wash my windows? That all depends on where you live or work. If you live near traffic or the ocean, it’s recommended more frequently. Think of your windows as a reflection of your home or business. Would you want to frequent a business that has dirty windows? We recommend businesses clean their windows at least twice a month. Homes – at least twice a year, depending on where you live.
2. Why should I wash my windows? Again, it goes back to the windows being a reflection of your business or home. Smudges and dirt stains on your windows limit the amount of light streaming into your home or business. Study after study has shown how light can affect mood. Think about this – it’s a beautiful day and you are glancing out your window only to see dirt, grime and smudges. It’s like someone putting a fingerprint on a beautiful painting or photograph. If you were about to open the glass door of a restaurant and saw it was covered with fingerprints and smudges, how confident would you be that the kitchen is clean?
3. Should I tackle the chore or hire a professional window cleaner? That all depends on how much time you have. Spring can be a busy time and there are many chores to tackle on the spring cleaning list plus there is yard work and the spring planting of the garden. Here’s what I recommend – look around your house and determine the average window size – in our house all the bedrooms have about the same sized windows. Now, clean one window inside, outside, screen, storm window, frame and window track. Keep track of how much time it took you to clean that one window. How many paper towels you used and how many times you were up and down on the ladder. While window washing may look easy, the truth is many people don’t do it correctly. We recommend using the proper tools and techniques to get your windows thoroughly cleaned. After you have cleaned one window, call and get a free estimate from a licensed and professional window cleaner and ask how long it would take to clean the entire house. With both pieces of information, you can make an informed choice. Or you can just call me and I would be happy to have my crew stop on by and get things shiny clean.
Let ABC Window Cleaners & Building Maintenance highly qualified crew help you make a great first impression and leave your window cleaning to us.