The sparkle created by a homemade glass cleaning solution can rival the work of a chemical cleaner, but without the worry about introducing toxic, damaging chemicals to your home. Distilled white vinegar (or lemon juice) and warm water -- mix them together in equal parts -- can be relied upon to not only leave windows streak-free, but the vinegar will also break down any residue or grease on the surface of the window.
Also use homemade glass cleaner to make your own glass cleaning wipes, good for touch-ups: Combine half a cup of white vinegar and half a cup of isopropyl alcohol with two cups of water, and pour over a roll of paper towels that's been cut in half. Store in a zip-top bag.
Author's Note: 10 Window Cleaning Tips for Apartment Dwellers
I think that of all the valuable glass-cleaning tips I picked up researching this article, most of all I appreciated learning good technique for removing stickers, labels or any other adhesive-backed thing from glass -- I've also now used lemon juice as well as white vinegar to remove labels from the bottoms of kitchen tools and pots.
More Great Links
- Andriani, Lynn. "There's a Wrong Way to Dust? And 5 Other Cleaning Mistakes." Oprah. Jan. 30, 2012. (June 14, 2013) http://www.oprah.com/home/House-Cleaning-Tips-and-Ideas
- Apartment Therapy. "Quick Tip: Clean Scratched Glass with Toothpaste." Feb. 17, 2011. (June 14, 2013) http://www.apartmenttherapy.com/quick-tip-clean-scratched-glas-139567
- Better Homes and Gardens. "How to Wash Windows." (June 14, 2013) http://www.bhg.com/homekeeping/house-cleaning/surface/how-to-wash-windows/
- D'Agnese, Joe. "How to Clean Windows Like a Pro." This Old House. (June 14, 20130 http://www.thisoldhouse.com/toh/how-to/intro/0,,20364019,00.html
- Forte, Carolyn. "Quick Window-Cleaning Tips." Good Housekeeping. (June 14, 2013) http://www.goodhousekeeping.com/home/cleaning-organizing/quick-window-cleaning-tips
- GlassesCrafter. "How to Remove Scratches on Eye Glasses." (June 14, 2013) http://glassescrafter.com/information/remove-scratches-on-eyeglasses.html
- LiveWell Network. "Glass Cleaner Wipes." (June 14, 2013) http://livewellnetwork.com/Deals/recipes/Glass-Cleaner-Wipes/8707431
- Marvin. "Glass Cleaning." (June 14, 2013) http://www.marvin.com/cleaning_glass/
- Palomo, Eulalia. "Natural Homemade Streak-Free Window Cleaners." National Geographic -- Green Living. (June 14, 2013) http://greenliving.nationalgeographic.com/natural-homemade-streakfree-window-cleaners-2457.html
- Perratore, Ed. "Tip of the Day: How to Clean Windows." Consumer Reports. July 31, 2007. (June 14, 2013) http://news.consumerreports.org/home/2007/07/tip-of-the-da-1.html
- Sansoni, Brian. "Happiness is ... Shiny Floors and Tidy Toilets?" American Cleaning Institute. May 14, 2008. (June 14, 2013) http://www.cleaninginstitute.org/happiness_is_shiny_floors_and_tidy_toilets/
- Sansoni, Brian. "Spring Cleaning Survey Reveals Consumers 'Dirty' Little Secrets." American Cleaning Institute. March 20, 2013. (June 13, 2013) http://www.cleaninginstitute.org/spring_cleaning_survey_reveals_consumers_dirty_little_secrets/
- Sansoni, Brian. "Windows, Blinds, Curtains and Carpets: Top Targets for Spring Cleaners." American Cleaning Institute. March 14, 2012. (June 14, 2013) http://www.cleaninginstitute.org/2012_spring_cleaning_survey/
- The Family Handyman. "How to Clean Glass Windows and Doors." (June 14, 2013) http://www.familyhandyman.com/windows/how-to-clean-glass-windows-and-doors/view-all
- The Family Handyman. "How to Wash Windows." (June 14, 2013) http://www.familyhandyman.com/windows/how-to-wash-windows/view-all
- The Martha Stewart Show. "Washing Windows." (June 14, 2013) http://www.marthastewart.com/265525/washing-windows
HowStuffWorks looks at some very creative uses for hydrogen peroxide, including as a mouthwash, pit stain remover, laundry additive and plant food.