Your window blinds do a big job for your home. Not only do they help you manage the amount of sun light that comes into your home, they also offer up privacy. All the while, looking good doing it. Window blinds aren’t just for practical use; they are a part of your home’s decor.
While cleaning blinds is certainly no one’s favorite chore, keeping your blinds clean helps them last longer. Not to mention it’s an important part of maintaining a healthy home.
Dirty or dusty window blinds not only look unkempt but also create dark shadows that can give the appearance that your home is smaller than it really is.
Fortunately, cleaning window blinds doesn’t need to be a daunting task. With the right techniques and some patience, you can learn how to clean them without too much fuss. There are several different ways that you can go about cleaning your window blinds, which we will explore in this article.
The Importance of Keeping Your Window Blinds Clean
Window blinds are an important part of any home, as they help to add both style and comfort to your living space. Dirty window blinds, however, can have the opposite effect, giving your home a dated, unkempt appearance.
And while dirty and damaged blinds are certainly not the most desirable look for a home, there are bigger concerns that come with dirty blinds than simply not looking nice. Dirty, dusty blinds can also pose a potential health risk.
Window blinds are an easy place for dust and allergens to accumulate and go unnoticed, which is bad news for those with allergies or asthma. Dust can exacerbate the symptoms of respiratory conditions, causing potentially serious health problems for some people.
Even those who don’t suffer from respiratory conditions may still feel the effects of the accumulation of dust in the home. Sneezing, coughing, and eye irritation are all common issues that stem from dust lingering in the home.
How Often Should You Clean Your Blinds?
Regular cleaning of your window blinds is important, but you may also want to perform a deep clean every once in a while.
A deep clean of your window blinds can help to remove stubborn dirt and grime that may be difficult to remove through regular cleaning methods. A deep clean of your blinds may also be necessary if they are stained or visibly dirty.
The best way to keep your blinds clean is by adding them to your weekly and monthly chore list. Give your blinds a light cleaning once a week to remove dust and loose dirt. All you have to do is wipe them down or, better yet, run the attachment of your vacuum cleaner over them to get rid of the loose dirt and dust.
Monthly, give them a more thorough clean by wiping them down. How you clean them will depend on the type of blinds you have and what they’re made of. There’s no one-size-fits-all when it comes to cleaning your window blinds.
How to Clean Window Blinds
The first step to cleaning your window blinds is to determine what type of window blinds you have. Depending on what they’re made of, you will need to use different cleaning techniques. While cleaning your window blinds regularly is important, it is also important to use the right cleaning method to avoid damaging them.
Here’s a look at some of the most common types of blinds and the best ways to safely clean them.
How to Clean Plastic or Vinyl Window Blinds
Vinyl and plastic window blinds are a common choice for homeowners, as they are affordable and low maintenance.
If you have plastic vinyl window blinds, you will want to clean them regularly with a soft cloth to avoid damaging them. Avoid using any materials that are abrasive, such coarse brushes or chemical cleaners, as these can cause damage to your blinds.
Start by removing any debris from your window blinds by dusting them off with a soft bristle brush or by gently vacuuming them.
Once all the loose dirt is gone, use a microfiber cloth or sponge to clean your vinyl window blinds with dish soap and warm water to remove stuck on dirt. Rinse them off with a clean damp cloth to avoid leaving streaks and soap residue behind.
Next, wipe down your blinds with a clean, damp cloth to remove any dirt or grime. If required, you can also use a small amount of mild dish soap to remove stubborn stains.
Finally, once your blinds are clean, allow them dry completely before closing them, so as not to trap moisture between the slats.
If your blinds have grease stains on them, a simple cleaning may not be enough. To eliminate these stains, take the blinds down and soak them in the tub with warm soapy water. They’ll need to soak for at least an hour.
Wipe them off after they’ve soaked and hang them to dry. You don’t need to hang them back in the window just yet. Drape a towel over a piece of furniture and rest the blinds atop it. Once they’re completely dry, hang your clean, stain-free blinds back in the window.
How to Clean Wooden Window Blinds
Wooden window blinds come in a variety of colors and textures and lend richness to any room.
Keep these blinds clean by wiping them down with a soft cloth. Wood is prone to scratches, so be careful not to use anything abrasive. You can also use your vacuum cleaner to get rid of dust and dirt.
Don’t use chemical cleaners on your wood blinds as this can damage them. If your blinds still need a little extra cleaning, use a soft, damp cloth to pick up anything left behind.
Once they’re dry, you can wipe them down a gain with some wood polish to help revitalize their color and give them a nice shine.
If you encounter any stubborn stains that water won’t remove, use a small amount of mild dish soap on the problem area. Be sure to rinse the area with a damp cloth to get rid of any soapy residual.
How to Clean Metal Blinds
Metal blinds are pretty resilient, but that doesn’t make them any less susceptible to dirt and grime.
Clean away dirt with a cloth, brush, or by vacuuming them. Wash them off with warm soapy water. The easiest way to do this is by placing them into the tub with warm soapy water. Allow them to soak to soften areas of tough, stuck-on dirt or grease before using a brush or cloth to clean them.
Rinse them off with clean water and hang them outside to dry. It’s important to ensure your blinds are completely dry before hanging them back up. Metal blinds can easily rust if you leave water on them, so make sure they get completely dry.
How to Clean Roman Shades
Similar to blinds in functionality, roman blinds are a solid piece of fabric attached to a roller that raise and lower to allow or prevent light into your home.
Clean these by taking the brush attachment of your vacuum cleaner and gently running it over the entire shade on both sides.
As they’re made of fabric, these shades attract and hold onto dust and pet hair. A lint roller can also come in handy for areas of pet fur or other debris that may have gotten stuck in the fibers.
If you have stains, dab the areas with a damp cloth and allow it to dry completely before trying again. If that doesn’t work, refer to your manufacturers’ instructions for more specific cleaning and care.
How to Clean Bamboo Shades
When it comes to bamboo shades, you won’t need any kind of moisture to clean them.
Moisture can break down the natural materials of these delicate blinds, so it’s dry methods only.
Wipe down bamboo blinds with a feather duster or dry cloth. For a faster and more effective clean, run the brush attachment of your vacuum cleaner over them.
Should You Take Your Window Blinds Down to Clean Them?
When it comes to a quick, weekly cleaning, there’s no need to remove the blinds from the window. But if you’re looking to give them a more thorough clean, taking them down makes the process easier and more efficient.
How to Clean Vertical Blinds
Cleaning vertical blinds is actually a lot easier than you might think. For a quick clean, wipe the blinds down with a cloth or duster. An easy way to make this chore a little faster is by putting an old, clean sock on each hand. Sandwich the individual shades between your hands at the top and run your hands down to the bottom.
If your vertical blinds need a deeper clean, unhook the shades from the headrail and wash them with warm soapy water. Scrub away dirt and grease with a sponge.
Lie the shades flat to dry to ensure they keep their shape. You can also use a hair dryer on the lowest setting if you notice the start of any water spots forming.
Some vertical blinds are machine washable, but you’ll need to check the manufacturers’ instructions. Don’t assume your blinds are. If it doesn’t say, it’s best to err on the side of caution and wash them by hand.
Once they’re completely dry, you can hang them back up.
When to Replace Your Blinds
Regular cleaning will keep your blinds looking great for years to come, but it won’t make them last forever. As a general rule, window blinds are expected to last only around 7 to 8 years.
If you notice any of these things, it’s time to consider swapping them out for a new set:
Yellowing of the Cords
Over time, the cords will begin to discolor or even fray. As this starts to happen, it can make opening and closing your blinds more difficult.
They Don’t Open and Close as Easily as They Once Did
Have you noticed that you have to fight with your blinds to open and close them? This could be the result of a faulty mechanism inside.
Not only is this frustrating to deal with, it could be a potential safety hazard. Should the mechanism inside that has worn down eventually give out, the blinds could simply fall without warning.
Drenched in sunlight all day, it’s only natural that blinds will begin to fade or discolor over time. When this discoloration becomes noticeable, it means that they’ve become sun damaged.
Newer blinds offer UV protection to help them last longer. Older blinds wont have that feature, so if they’re starting to look yellowed or aged, it’s time to upgrade to something newer.
Broken or Misshapen Slats
The sun isn’t the only thing that can cause damage to blinds. Children and pets are notorious for damaging blinds, especially aluminum blinds as they bend easily.
If you have holes in your blinds where slats have broken off, or warped areas that no longer keep the light out, it’s time for some new blinds.
How old are your blinds? If you don’t know the answer, but suspect they may be over 7 years in age, it’s time to stat thinking about getting new ones.
It’s really a good idea to think about replacing your blinds every 7 years anyway. Even if they’re working fine now, they’re at an age where problems can start to develop.
This is also a great opportunity to bring in something more modern. Your new blinds may have a more modern look or offer UV protection that your old ones didn’t have.
You’ve Replaced Your Windows
New windows are a good reason to get new blinds. Your old ones may not fit like they used to in the new window. Rather than trying to adjust them to make them fit, it’s easier just to get new ones. This is also an opportunity to find blinds in a style that compliments your new window.