How to wash your car windows properly

At Lighthouse Express Car Wash we love washing cars!  Shiny and streakfree windows is one part of proper car care and a clean car although cleaning windows can sometimes be a challenging endeavor for some and so we wanted to take this opportunity to share with your some tips and recommendations for things you should know when cleaning your vehicle’s windows.  In this post we will discuss the tools you will need, some techniques you can use, and some other helpful recommendations to assist you in keeping your vehicle’s windows looking their best.

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What tools do I need?

For starters, we recommend you start with the right tools to wash your windows.  A good clean towel, two of them actually, and a good glass cleaner solution is what we’ve found is the most effective way to keep your windows glistening and sparkling.  The towels we use for cleaning windows is a high quality poly towel and a clean microfiber towel.  For window cleaner we recommend a high quality window cleaner if you want the best results.  We have high quality window cleaner in our vending machines for purchase or you can elect to use our complimentary window cleaner available for our guests. It should be noted glass cleaner that contains ammonia is not recommended for use on windows with tint due to possible premature fading or damage to the tint.  If you aren’t sure which glass cleaner to use, we recommend erring on the side of caution and using a higher grade window glass cleaner (available in our vending machine).  

Should I spray directly onto the glass or onto my towel?  

At Lighthouse Express Car Wash we go both ways when using window glass cleaner.  Generally though, the rule is that if you don’t want to deal with overspray to spray onto your towel as opposed to onto the glass which can sometimes get unwanted glass cleaner onto the body or trim of the vehicle.  Glass cleaner is generally safe and any overspray can be removed with ease.

How often should I clean the windows on my vehicle?

At Lighthouse Express Car Wash we recommend cleaning your windows on a weekly or when needed basis which can be whenever any environmental radicals such as bird droppings, dirt, road tar, tree sap, or juju berries (sp?) find their way onto the window glass.  Like the clear coat of your paint, glass can also lose it’s natural protective surface and brilliant shine over time and if not cared for properly.  We recommend cleaning your exterior windows weekly and interior windows less frequently.  Fingerprints and hand and facial smears are generally less harmful and do not need to be removed immediately though over time they may become unsightly.  Other foreign substances that get onto the interior window of your car such as soda, alcoholic drinks, or other free radicals should be removed promptly.  Lastly, tough stains such as from paint or permanent marker can be removed via tougher chemical safe for glass and the use of harsher tools such as a razor blade or window scraper.  Please use care when using any of these stronger tools to prevent scratching or more permanent damage to your window.

Summary (Additional Tips, Wrapping Up, Personal Thoughts):
1) Windows should be washed as needed, not just because.  This will help prevent unnecessary labor and creating streaks and unsightly marks from improper cleaning).
2) The trick to cleaning the interior front window is to do the majority of the cleaning while sitting in the passenger seat.  Pressure is applied to the palm of the hand working from the outside-in.  Use same strategy for any spots missed on driver side.  We recommend spraying window cleaner on towel to clean front windshield rather than directly onto windshield.  Use the two towel strategy as discussed above.
3) Don’t forget to clean side mirrors and rear view mirrors.
4) Detail with clean microfiber towel to remove smears and streaks.

As with most things in cleaning your car, results will vary based on factors such as age, make, and model of your car.  Not all glass is made the same and thus there will be some varying degree of effectiveness mentioned here.  If you have any helpful suggestions or comments please feel free to write them below or let us know.  

Happy cleaning y’all and have a very happy, clean and positive autumn season! 

your friends at Lighthouse Express Car Wash – Let your ride shine!


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