Window screens, just like windows, need regular cleaning. If you’re getting your windows cleaned professionally, then they may well offer this service in addition to cleaning the glass. However, it’s easy to clean window screens yourself, especially if you do it as part of a regular maintenance routine.
Keep the dust off
Get into the habit of dusting down your screens with a cloth or soft brush every week or so. This will keep off not just dust, but insects, cobwebs, and small bits of debris. Remember to clean both inside and out.
Every so often, use a vacuum cleaner with a brush attachment to really get all the bits out. If you have a really powerful vacuum, then it’s advisable to test it first on a small area to make sure it won’t damage your screen, and don’t press hard!
Depending on where you live, you may need to do this every month or two. Properties near the beach or near a major highway will need cleaning more often.
Once a year, you should give your screens a thorough clean. It’s often best to do this in fall, just as you’re getting ready to open your windows and enjoy some fresh air in the evenings. Clearing off the year’s grime will make your porch or living area much more pleasant!
This is best done by taking the screens off. You can work in the bathroom, or outside in the yard. Label each screen so you remember where it goes back and which way up it goes – this will save you a lot of time and headaches later!
Mix up a solution of 1 cup of household ammonia, 3 cups of water, and a tablespoonful of dish detergent, and put it in a spray bottle.
Now soak each screen with water, either in the shower or using a garden hose. Spray both sides of the screen with your cleaning solution, and leave it to soak for ten to fifteen minutes. This will do most of the work for you!
Then scrub gently with a sponge or soft brush. Don’t use a cloth – the lint will probably get stuck to the screen! If you have really stubborn spots of grime, an old toothbrush makes an excellent cleaning tool. And remember to clean both sides!
Finally, rinse your screen off using your shower or hose, and leave it to dry.
Meanwhile, clean out the track and the window frame, then reinstall your screens.
While you’re cleaning your screens, check for small rips and tears. Most of the time, these can easily be repaired quickly and cheaply if you catch them early. If you leave them too long, they will gradually spread until you eventually end up needing to replace the entire screen.
Once you get into this sort of cleaning routine, you’ll be amazed how much more light and air gets into your house!