Of all the cleaning products you can DIY, a homemade glass cleaner is actually one of the easiest because you probably have everything you need already around your home. Making your own homemade glass cleaner saves money, eliminates last-minute trips to the store, and takes the guesswork out of any unfamiliar chemicals that are often found in commercial window cleaning sprays.
Want to know more about making your own homemade glass cleaner? Your favorite Boston residential cleaners have three simple homemade cleaners that will leave your windows, mirrors and glass surface sparkling clean. Keep reading to find out more!
Before You Get Started
Safety should always be first and foremost before you start messing with any cleaning products, DIY or store-bought. Remember to store all of your cleaners, homemade and commercial alike, in a dry, temperature-controlled area away from kids, pets, food supplies, and direct heat sources.
Most manufacturers will recommend that you avoid reusing an empty commercial cleaner bottle for homemade cleaners. We suggest that you buy a new spray bottle for your freshly made glass cleaner.
You’ll likely be using vinegar or alcohol, both of which act as solvents and will pick up any traces of other chemicals that are left in an old spray bottle. With a new bottle, you won’t have to worry about unintended, and potentially dangerous, reactions.
Here are a few extra tips for safety and best results when mixing up your cleaner:
✨If you live in an area with hard water, use distilled water when mixing these window cleaners.
✨Distilled water does not contain the minerals (calcium and magnesium) that leave cloudy deposits on the glass.
✨Mix in small quantities, just enough to fill a spray bottle.
✨After mixing a batch of glass cleaner, be sure to label the spray bottle clearly and add a date so you know if the ingredients are fresh.
✨Consider adding instructions for use to the label so others can help you.
How to Make a Vinegar-Based Glass Cleaner
Use cleaning or distilled white vinegar for this homemade window cleaner. The vinegar’s acetic acid in vinegar, which is also used in many store-bought cleaners, is a powerful cleaning agent that dissolves mineral deposits and greasy smudges.
It is important to note that vinegar-based cleaning solutions should not replace true sanitizing cleaners that remove 99.9 percent of disease-causing bacteria and viruses, the EPA standard for products labeled as sanitizers.
Create the Mixture
Fill a clean spray bottle with equal parts vinegar and distilled water. Label the bottle. You can use a cleaning vinegar like this if you don’t have regular distilled white vinegar on hand.
Even though the vinegar odor will dissipate quickly, you can add fragrance to the glass cleaner. Add about 10 drops of your favorite essential oil into the spray bottle solution and shake to mix. If you’re wondering what essential oil might make the best for your new cleaner, check out some of these scents, tea tree is our favorite!
Using the Vinegar Cleaner
Start at the top of the window to avoid drips and spray just as you would any glass cleaner. Wipe away grime with a lint-free cloth or newspaper. When cleaning a mirror, spritz the cloth instead of the mirror to avoid possible damage to the frame.
How to Make a Rubbing Alcohol-Based Glass Cleaner
The combination of the acids in vinegar and the alcohol solvents is effective in removing the toughest grease from windows. Both evaporate quickly to eliminate streaks and spots.
Pour one cup of rubbing alcohol, one cup of distilled water, and one tablespoon of vinegar into a spray bottle. Shake to mix and label the bottle.
Spray & Wipe
Starting at the top of the window, spray on the cleaner and wipe away grime with a microfiber cloth.
How to Make a Cornstarch-Based Glass Cleaner
The fine texture of the granules in cornstarch creates a gentle abrasive for heavily soiled windows. Add vinegar and alcohol and this homemade cleaner is ideal for cutting through dirt and grime, especially on outside windows where you can use a hose to rinse away any cornstarch residue.
Measure one-fourth cup of rubbing alcohol, one-fourth cup of distilled white vinegar, one tablespoon of cornstarch, and two cups of distilled water.
Shake & Wipe
Shake the spray bottle each time to mix the solution well before spraying the cleaner onto a window. Start at the top, spray with the cleaner, and let it work for a few minutes. Keep moving to a clean area of your newspaper or cloth as the dirt is transferred. Wipe the glass until it looks crystal clear and the cornstarch haze is gone. If you don’t wipe well, the cornstarch leaves a residue on the glass. Use a hose to rinse outdoor windows and then dry the glass well.
Combine & Shake
Add the ingredients to the bottle and shake well to mix. Label the bottle
Additional Tips for Keeping Windows Sparkling Clean
✨Before spraying on your homemade glass cleaner, use a duster to remove loose soil and cobwebs from the glass surface. There’s no need to push that debris around.
✨Always use a lint-free tool for cleaning and drying windows. Paper towels and some cotton towels like terrycloth can leave fibers behind on the windows.
✨Give the homemade glass cleaner time to cut through the soil before wiping it away.
✨Clean windows on an overcast day or the side of the house away from the sun to prevent the cleaner from drying too quickly and leaving streaks.
✨When in doubt, ask the pros! As your favorite Boston residential cleaners, we’re certainly happy to help!