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Spring cleaning has to be extensive. Winter is always the harshest time of the year in temperate regions of the world. After many months of freezing temperatures, your doors and windows need a thorough wash. Ordinary cleaning would not work. The most daunting challenge of spring cleaning, especially when it comes to windows and doors, is to safeguard the material. You don’t want to damage the wood, vinyl, aluminum, glass and fiberglass among other materials. At the same time, you don’t want them to be partially cleaned. That would do nothing to the curb appeal of your house.
• Start with a brushing exercise. Use a soft brush. The bristles should not be rigid or harsh. Use the soft brush to get rid of all the dust, dirt, grime and mud from the doors and windows. A soft brush should work on wood, glass, plastic or vinyl among other materials. Wet winters leave a substantial deposit of grime and mud on the doors and windows. Dust settles down on the surface and a lot of the dirt gets ingrained. You need to get rid of these as much as you can before you try and wash the doors and windows. Do not start by applying water or any liquid cleaning agent. Some grime and mud will get further ingrained when exposed to water or fluid. These would then become stains. While such stains can be removed, they may leave a residual stain or smudge. These would make your doors and windows appear unpleasant. It would only complicate the cleaning exercise.
• Once you get rid of all the buildup with a dry soft brush, use a mild soap or cleaning agent and blend it in water. Do not opt for anything that is too harsh. Avoid using chemicals. Try to look for organic cleaning agents. These will be gentle on the glass, wood and vinyl. It is not the soap water or cleaning agent that would perform the magic. It would be your manual effort. If you wish to simplify your task, refer to the recommendations of the manufacturers of your doors and windows. Every reputed brand shares tips on how to clean their doors or windows and they would mention the best cleaning agents. For instance, there is a plethora of cleaning liquids for glass. There are sprays too. Not all types of glass can be effectively cleaned by the same spray. The same applies to other materials.
• Spring cleaning requires a bit of practice, especially when it comes to hard surfaces that are sturdy but also vulnerable to damage. You would need to master the wiping techniques. When you are cleaning glass, use circular motions. Do not just rub or indulge in a scrubbing motion. Circular motion works best. However, such a motion would be futile on metal or alloy. Steel or aluminum cannot be effectively cleaned with circular motions. You would need to indulge in a bit of scrubbing. Wood demands long swipes. You should not scrub, avoid circular motions and definitely don’t hard press the cleaning agent against the wood. The door would have a smooth finish. You don’t want to damage the treatment or whatever coating there is. Gentle long swipes will effectively clean the surface.
• Always clean both surfaces of doors and windows. It is not just the exterior that needs to be cleaned. Pay close attention to hinges, jambs, frames and any other hard to reach places. If you have sliding doors and windows, focus on the sliding mechanism. There could be rollers or balls or there may be just a panel facilitating the slide. These spaces will have substantial dirt and dust buildup. You may even find some unexplained stains. You can use a brush with long bristles or you can wrap something thin and long with a piece of cloth and clean these spaces. Don’t use anything that is too sharp as it can damage the panel.
• You may not be able to clean your doors and windows in one session. You may have to wait for the doors and windows to dry after one round of cleaning them with soap water or a cleaning agent. There could be some smudges, stains or residual dirt that must be cleaned in a second round. Usually, two rounds are enough to clean doors and windows thoroughly. Let the doors and windows dry naturally but you should use a piece of dry clean cloth to absorb excess moisture from the surface. Residual soap water or cleaning agent may hold on to some residual dirt or dust and that would appear to be unpleasant once the window dries. Do not use any dryer or heater to facilitate the drying process unless you are absolutely sure there would be no adverse effect on the material.