Unplasticized Polyvinyl Chloride (UPVC) is the most popular material for window frames. Why is this? UPVC is not only easy to manufacture, but it’s also long-lasting and relatively maintenance-free. You can even choose the colour and finish to match the aesthetic of your home.
Despite being resistant to rotting and rusting, UPVC windows can become dirty from build-ups of dirt and grime if not properly maintained. Luckily, cleaning UPVC is easy, which means that you can keep your windows looking bright and fresh all year round.
Before taking on the bigger messes, there are a number of ways that you can take care of your windows. By following these simple steps and regularly cleaning your UPVC doors and window frames, you can stop build-ups of dirt from forming at all.
1. Use a vacuum
For removing small amounts of dirt or thin layers of dust from the edges and corners of your frames, you can simply use the dusting brush on your vacuum cleaner (the attachment with the soft bristles). Not only is this a really quick and simple way to clean around your windows, but the bristles on the brush will protect your UPVC and double glazing from being scratched.
2. Open your windows
It’s all well and good to give your windows a quick wipe down, but it’s in between the frames that need to most attention. These are the areas that most of us are guilty of forgetting about and can easily get clogged up with dirt. Ignoring these areas can cause your windows to become stiff and cause bigger problems if left unchecked.
3. Stick to soft cloths
After you’ve cleaned your windows and left them looking sparkling, it’s vital that you remove any residual moisture left over. You need to be thorough, but you don’t want to use anything too abrasive and risk damaging the frames or glass. All you need is a soft cloth or kitchen roll to give your windows a quick once over.
4. Keep on top of it!
The best way to clean your windows is to keep them clean. By regularly washing your UPVC, you won’t need to spend time scrubbing away at dirt and grime or risk your windows becoming clogged or damaged.
Best cleaning products for UPVC
Warm, soapy water
It may sound simple, but this is all you need to use if you’re cleaning your windows regularly. Giving your UPVC a quick scrub with a sponge and soapy water is enough to remove light dirt and keep your frames looking nice and bright.
Vinegar and hot water
This is a great alternative to using manufactured products with chemicals. Mix one part vinegar with 4 parts hot water and pour the mixture into a spray bottle. You can then spray your frames and leave it to do its work for 10-15 minutes, then simply wipe away with a clean cloth. You can then enjoy lovely bright windows without any chemical smells being left behind.
If your window frames have been neglected for a while or if you’ve just moved into a new home, you may need some stronger products to bring your UPVC back to life. Specialist UPVC cleaners usually come in the form of a cream or paste and can help to remove really stubborn muck without posing a risk to your double glazing or window frames.
What to avoid when cleaning UPVC
Stay far away from any products that contain bleach, white spirits, methylated spirits, nail varnish remover or any other harsh chemicals. It’s possible you may have heard hearsay or an old wives tale that recommends such cleaners, but they aren’t to be believed. Products of this type will only damage your UPVC frames as well as posing a risk to your window sills and even surrounding paintwork or wallpaper.
Check your cleaning products thoroughly before using them on your windows. Even harmless dish soap can contain dyes to give them a bright colour. Although they’re fine for their intended purpose, if used on UPVC, they could end up staining your lovely bright frames which will be very difficult to remedy.
As already stated, soft cloths are the ideal material for wiping down your windows. If you don’t have one at hand, don’t be tempted to use a scourer or abrasive sponge – you’ll risk scratching your UPVC.
For more information on how to keep your windows looking at their best, follow our guide to maintaining your double-glazed windows. If you’ve noticed your double glazing has become cloudy, get in touch with your local branch of Cloudy2Clear and our expert engineers will give you a free, no-obligation quote.