When it comes to cleaning and maintenance, vinyl windows are as close as you can get to maintenance free. The construction grade plastic does not warp, chip, peel, rust, or fade. You will never have to sand and refinish, or worry about scratches and oxidation. But because they will get dirty once in a while, you will want to routinely inspect and clean your Huntington Beach, CA vinyl windows to keep them looking like new. Here are a few steps to follow:
Step 1. Inspect Windows
Before you pull out the cleaning supplies, take a minute to walk through the house looking over your windows. Test the operation to make sure windows open smoothly, with little effort. Look for cracks in the glazing or condensation forming between the panes. On the outside look for areas where caulking or weather stripping is failing. You should also look for mold or signs of pest infestation. Any one of these problems could mean it is time for a replacement window.
Step 2. Gather Cleaning Supplies
You don’t need anything fancy. You can wash your vinyl windows frames with mild dish detergent and warm water. You will also want soft, lint free cloths, a sponge or soft bristle brush, and a dry towel. For glass and more stubborn dirt you can use a solution of three parts vinegar to seven parts water. Then, before getting started, remove your window screens. Find a clean, flat place to lay them down outside or prop them up inside your tub or shower. You don’t want to risk tearing the screen.
Step 3. Clean Window Frames
Using the detergent and water combination, quickly wipe down the window frames and rinse with clear water. But don’t let water run down the frames and pool along the bottom. This can cause problems with leaks and mold. Instead keep a dry towel ready to collect the drips. Do not use any harsh chemicals or abrasives.
Step 4. Clean Glass
Moving on, use the vinegar solution, or a glass cleaner to clear away dirt. A lot of professional cleaners use newspaper for a streak free shine, but you can also use a lint free cloth. Again, you do not want to let liquid drip and pool inside the frame. And don’t use any abrasive tools like a razor blade or scrubber. These can easily damage the coatings on your windows.
Step 6. Clean and Lubricate Tracks
To keep windows operating smoothly you should lubricate the tracks. But you can’t use oil based sprays. These end up collecting more dirt. Instead look for a silicone based lubricant. And instead of spraying directly on the track, and over spraying on your clean windows, spray into a cloth and wipe along the tracks.
Step 7. Clean and Replace Screens
When the rest of your windows are clean you can move on to the screens. Using the same mild soap and water you can remove the dirt from both sides with a soft bristle brush. Rinse with clear water and let dry. Do not use a pressure washer or special nozzle to spray your screens, otherwise they could rip.
With these easy steps you can keep your vinyl windows in top condition. But there are some issues with old windows you can’t fix with detergent and elbow grease. In these cases you might want to have a professional come out and give you an assessment on replacement windows. Call Seaport Windows and Doors for a consultation at 714-220-3939 or stop by 4201 Katella Ave., Los Alamitos, CA 90720.