Tuesday, October 1, 2013


In the grand scheme of things streak-free windows are not high on one's list of priorities, including mine. But if you make the effort to clean your windows, this also applies to mirrors, shouldn't they be streak-free? Of course they should.

I know what you're thinking, this woman has waaaayyy too much time on her hands. Trust me a quick glance at my monthly calendar indicates otherwise.
After years of trying different cleaning products that didn't work and a recent attempt to clean my car windows with a commercial window-cleaner I had had it!  That's when I remembered  a newspaper column I clipped from Mary Hunt's Everyday Cheapskate entitled, "Know your cleaning products" in which a recipe for a heavy-duty window cleaner appeared.
It didn't take long to dig it up and after a short trip to the local dollar store picked up all the ingredients for around $5. Before I continue, here's the recipe:
Mix 1/2 cup household ammonia, 2 cups rubbing alcohol and 1 teaspoon of liquid Dawn (the original blue variety). Mix ammonia, alcohol and detergent in a 1-gallon jug. Fill with warm water. Shake before each use. This solution is great for cleaning really dirty windows and taking tape marks off windows; it's also great for removing soap film from shower doors.
After making a batch the first test was the back door of our garage. As I'm cleaning the windows it's apparent this stuff really works!! The next test was our upstairs bathroom mirror which runs the length of one wall. NO streaks! Wow! The ultimate test came when I handed the spray bottle to my husband, who is not easily impressed, and said, "The next time you clean your truck windows use this and let me know what you think." Even he was impressed. Need I write more?
There is no strong ammonia odor in fact there's not much of an odor at all. There was also a recipe for an all-purpose cleaner: Combine 1/2 cup ammonia, 1/2 cup vinegar, 4 drops liquid dishwashing soap and 1/4 cup baking soda into 1 gallon of warm water. Mix well and dispense with a spray bottle.
One other thing you might like to know, according to Hunt you pay about 15 cents an ounce for the store bought window cleaner and it's 95% water!
I could've saved myself a lot of trouble and aggravation if I'd made the window-cleaning solution right after reading Hunt's column but I didn't. The date on the clipping? 2006!

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