Why Clean Window Screens?
Window screens do a great job of keeping bugs, leaves, and debris from entering your home. Over time, it is inevitable that dirt and dust particles will build up in the mesh of the screen and make it difficult to see through them clearly.
Clean window screens will deliver better visibility, improved fresh air flow, and lengthen the life of your screens.
How Often Should I Clean My Window Screens?
We recommend you clean your window screens once a year. You may consider cleaning them more often if they are exposed to frequent wind, rain, dust, or other weather conditions.
Tools & Materials You'll Need to Wash Your Window Screens
• Soft bristle brush
(Note: window screens can be damaged using a hard bristle brush)
• Garden hose with a spray nozzle
• Gentle all-purpose dish soap
• Bucket of lukewarm water
How to Clean Window Screens in 7 Easy Steps
Step 1 - Remove the window screen from the window frame.
Carefully pull the window screen off of the window frame and set it aside. In most cases, this is intuitive. However, screen frames and the way they are secured vary. There are often tabs or pins you'll want to push out to release your window screens.
If you are washing all your window screens at one time, make sure to note which screens come from which windows.
Step 2 - Mix your cleaning solution in a bucket.
Fill the bucket with warm water and add a few drops of mild dish soap. Most people use a standard dish soap such as Dawn or Joy.
Some prefer to use a mixture of white vinegar and water. If that is the cleaning solution you prefer, a 50/50 (water vs. white vinegar) mix percentage works well.
Step 3 - Spray your window screen with a hose.
People often lean their screens up against the house or a fence to spray them down.
Use the spray nozzle attachment on your hose to lightly rinse off any loose dirt and debris from the surface of your window screen. Remember, screens can be fragile, so keep the hose on light pressure and use the option on your nozzle that is more like a spray as opposed to a higher pressure setting.
If your screens are really dirty, you may want to consider vacuuming them first with a shop vac. In most cases, just a light spray with your garden hose gets the job done.
Keep in mind that Phifer offers both BetterVue® and UltraVue®2 screening with built-in Water Shed Technology. This hydrophobic coating enables these products to repel water, dirt, and debris to deliver clearer views by preventing the “holes” in the screen from retaining water during and after a rain shower. They also do not require cleaning as often as standard screens!
Step 4 - Gently scrub your window screens with a soft bristle brush.
Dip your soft-bristled brush into your cleaning solution and lightly scrub away any dirt, debris, or dust that may have built up on the window screen. You'll want to dip your brush in your cleaning solution often.
If the cleaning solution seems like it is getting dirty, mix up a fresh bucket!
Step 5 - Rinse your window screen with a hose.
At this point, you've rinsed off your window screens with water and scrubbed them with a soft-bristle brush. You are now ready to rinse your screens off.
Use your hose to rinse off all of the soap residue from your window screens.
Step 6 - Let the window screen dry thoroughly.
The little holes in the mesh of your screens hold water pretty well, so you'll want to start the process by shaking your window screens to remove any excess water.
If you are fortunate enough to be washing your window screens on a sunny day, lean them up against your house or fence and let them dry thoroughly in the fresh air.
A good practice is to flip the entire screen about halfway through the process to make sure the top and bottom are both dry.
Step 7 - Re-install the window screen.
Once your window screens are completely dry, you can re-install them into the window frames.
Remember to place the same screen in its original window frame if you cleaned multiple screens. Make sure all of the sides are secure, and there are no gaps between the screen and frame.
Enjoy your freshly cleaned window screens! Follow these steps each year to ensure that your window screens remain clean and in good condition!
Closing Thoughts on Cleaning Window Screens
Some people use a lint roller or Swiffer-type duster to keep their window screens clean. This method is also useful on second-story windows if you want to avoid the feared ladder. While this works well, cleaning them with soap and water will yield the best results.
Cleaning window screens give you a clearer view, fresher air, and helps them last longer.