How to Clean Window Screens

First published: August 30, 2011 in Household Hints

Last Updated: August 30, 2011 10:43 am Tough to read? Print this! Tough to read? Print this! Email This Email This
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This is the first contribution to my website from Jakob – I found it very helpful and easy to follow. Hope you will as well! You can find more cleaning tips on Jakob’s website:

How to Clean Window Screens:

Screens are like filters.Clean indoor air is an integral part of a healthy home and one of the factors that play an important role in determining air quality is the state of window screens.

Most homes across North America have screens on the windows allowing air to enter while filtering out various flying debris and stopping animals and bugs from entering.

However, since the screens act like filters they often collect a lot of dust and dirt over the course of time and eventually need a good clean. This is especially the case during the warmer months and in arid regions where airborne particles and pollution are more prevalent.

The question is what’s the best way to make them shine and assure easy breathing?

The answer is: Cleaning screens

Cleaning screens is a simple job that can be done during regular window cleaning </a> chores and all that’s needed is a soapy sponge, water for rinsing, and a towel to sop up any excess wetness.

To remove all residues the screen should be gently scrubbed with the sponge and then rinsed by letting water run from top to bottom.

The biggest decision to make on this project is whether to clean the screens in place or take them out.

Cleaning them in place means taking a few extra precautions:

Although you won’t be using much water, be careful it doesn’t spill on the floor, which may have a carpet.

Try not to let excess water drip down the exterior and flood a neighbour’s apartment through an open window. If you live above the ground floor, it’s a good idea to alert whoever lives underneath about your plans.

If the base of the window doesn’t have drainage holes you may be stuck removing any collected water.

If drainage holes exist and the windows aren’t too high up the screens can also be cleaned from the outside using a garden hose and mild scrub brush. Just make sure windows are closed from the inside before spraying the hose at the screen.

On the other hand, removing screens allows for a more thorough and freer cleaning campaign, as they can be washed in the yard, on the sidewalk, or in the bath tub and dried in the sun before being returned. Just one note of caution here: If you clean the screens outside make sure they are dry before returning them so water doesn’t drip across the house.

Extra Tips

In order to preserve your screens apply very little pressure when cleaning, as pressing too hard may dent the wire mesh or dislocate it from the frame. Try to clean the screens twice a year; once in the early spring and once in the late summer between the seasons.

Finally, as tempting as it may be don’t use chemical cleaners, even if recommended. They are unnecessary and will only pollute the ground wherever they drain. If you find there are hard residues on the screen, apply soap and water like you would with cruddy dishes and let the crud  soften. Then rescrub and rinse.

Jakob Barry writes for Networx.com.He covers various eco-friendly home improvement topics vices

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