These seemingly simple window treatments are actually made up of many smaller pieces that can attract dirt and dust. The different parts of the blinds require some different cleaning methods. Dusty and grungy blinds wear out more quickly and don’t open and close as they should. Different types of blinds may also require different cleaning methods too.
How To Clean Horizontal Slat Type Blinds
(Including Faux Wood, Real Wood, Ecowood, and Venetians)
Use a low suction vacuum as a high suction vacuum can damage light duty metal slats. Whether your horizontal type blinds are metal, wood, or PVC, vacuuming weekly with a brush attachment will go a long way towards keeping them clean. If you try to vacuum with anything other than the brush attachment, it won’t be nearly as effective and you run the risk of scratching or denting metal type blinds. For best results, vacuum slats with blind fully extended and open, then close the slats all the way to reach more surface area of the blind as you vacuum.
Finger marks and dust buildup may need some extra help after vacuuming. Try wiping small dusty or dirty sections which are not accessible with the vacuum with a damp sponge or damp microfiber cloth. To avoid water spotting, gently wipe dry with a dry clean microfiber cloth or a dry dish towel.
When only a deep cleaning will do, vacuum the blinds first to remove as much dirt as possible. Remove complete metal, plastic, and painted blinds, dipping them in water mixed with a few drops of mild dish soap. Do not dip the head rail in the water. The bathtub works well for this type of chore for blinds less than 60” in width. NEVER immerse wooden blinds, or blinds with decorative tapes in water. Carefully towel dry each slat, front and back to avoid streaking. This type of cleaning usually only needs to be done yearly. Regular vacuuming and spot cleaning will extend the amount of time between these bathing sessions for your blinds. If the blind is too long to fit in a bathtub take it outside and lay it on a patio and give it a good lather of a mild soap and hose it off thoroughly. Then let it dry completely before re-hanging it. Although hard to find there are a few companies that do clean blinds. Some do them at your location whereas others take them away and use an ultrasonic cleaner vat to do a very thorough cleaning..
Whiten Dingy Cords
On many blinds with corded controls, soiling and dinginess can be an issue. A mild detergent and warm water on a soft cloth (wash cloth or microfiber cloth) will usually take care of this problem.
Homemade Cleaners for Blinds
For wet cleaning usually water is all that is really needed to effectively clean your blinds. If you need something with a little more cleaning power, a few drops of mild dish soap in a half gallon of warm water should do the trick. You can also add a few teaspoons of glass cleaner or vinegar to the mix to help the blinds dry streak free. If you are concerned, you should always test any cleaning solution on a hidden spot first to make sure the results look okay to you.
For dry cleaning the best tools are the vacuum cleaner with brush attachment or a microfiber cleaning cloth. No sprays or cleaners are needed in most cases.
Tools Used To Clean Blinds
- Vacuum cleaner with brush attachment
- Bathtub (for blinds with a width of less than 60”)
- A large area to spread out larger blinds
- Mild dish soap
- Water (warm)
- Small towels (wet and dry)
- Maybe a little elbow grease!!
Next issue we will discuss cleaning of other types of blinds such as roller shades and cellular shades