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How to Clean Double-Hung Windows

Cleaning your double-hung windows is about more than just keeping the glass free of smudges. It’s necessary to keep your windows working and looking good throughout their lifetime. Cleaning Pella’s double-hung windows is a breeze when you follow these steps.

Prepare Your Cleaning Solution

You have a few different options when it comes to cleaning solutions.

  • Ammonia-free glass cleaners like Sprayway, Windex or any number of products available at your local hardware store.
  • A vinegar-based solution also works well. Mix one part white vinegar to 10 parts water in a spray bottle.
  • Soap-based solutions also work well. You can mix a small amount of liquid dish soap with warm water in a spray bottle.

Whichever cleaning solution you use, apply it to a clean, lint-free microfiber towel. Be careful not to get too much cleaner on your window’s frame as it may cause discolorations or damage.

Cleaning Your Frames

Start by wiping down your window frame with a clean cloth. You can dampen the cloth with a small amount of water or a soap-based cleaning solution, but make sure you dry the frame completely afterward. Make sure you run the cloth along the vertical tracks of your double hung window to clear any debris that may be building up. Stubborn stains and deposits may be removed with mineral spirits or cleaning solution like Pine-Sol® and can be applied with a clean, dry cloth or towel.

Tilting The Sash

  1. Unlock the lower sash.
  2. Raise it by three inches. This is a crucial step to avoid damaging the bottom part of the sash.
  3. There are two locks hidden on the backside of the sash at the top right and left corners. Use your fingers to pull those locks toward the center.
    1. You may also have compressive jambliners (the tracks that the sash runs along). In this case, push the jambliner into the frame and pull the sash out. Don’t pull it too hard or far from the frame as this could cause a crack. Repeat this process on the other side.
  4. Tilt the lower sash down until it forms a 90 degree angle with the frame.
  5. Lift the sash at an angle to remove it from the frame. You may have to detach strings from the bottom of the sash.
  6. Slide the upper sash down until the top of it is within reach.
  7. Repeat step 3 for the upper sash.
  8. Tilt the upper sash out and clean the outside of your window.
  9. Lift and rotate the upper sash back into position and push it back into the frame by applying pressure on both corners of the upper sash.
  10. Clean the exterior of the lower sash.
  11. Place the lower sash back into its normal.
  12. Close and lock the window.

To clean your double-hung windows you’ll need to tilt the sashes out from the window frame. Follow this guide and watch our step-by-step video to see how it’s done.