Double pane windows are great energy savers which is why they are present in many houses. While they provide insulation and aesthetic appeal, cleaning them is a bit of a tricky task. Well, you will find it a breeze cleaning the fingerprints on each pane with a glass cleaner. The question that really concerns many homeowners is how do they clean inside the double pane window. The window may get foggy and milky when the seal between the panes breaks down. Here are some diy methods on how to clean double pane windows.
Why does double pane window get foggy?
Double pane windows are made of two separate glass panes and a space full of air in between them. The air is sealed inside so that it can’t leave and ensures insulation. Old age, direct exposure to sun and poor water drainage around the window weaken the seal until it eventually fails. Broken seal allows for dirt and moisture to get in and cause condensation. In result, the window gets foggy and you can hardly see anything through it.
How to remove the fog from the double pane windows?
If you don’t want to go through the mess and fuss of cleaning double pane window and if your budget allows it, you can replace the window. Another quick but costly solution is to hire a professional to reseal the space in between the panes. If neither of these options suits you, there are some diy ways to fix the flawed window.
How to clean double pane windows using diy methods?
While it is really difficult to clean the moisture and grime accumulated in between the glass panes, your hands are not completely tied. There are some tricks you can try to remove the haze inside the window without removing the panes which is a task that takes skill, effort and time.
1. Drilling holes
To combat the condensation formed inside the window, you can drill some holes in the panes. Anyway, the seal has failed, so you don’t have to think about insulation anymore. Your main goal is to remove the fog and drilling holes will help you receive access to the moisture and grime. Keep in mind that drilling the glass is a challenging task and can cause glass cracks and chips. You have to be extremely careful, use proper tools and follow the professional guidelines precisely.
Make two holes in the window seal with the diameter 1/4 inch. Stay 2 inches away from the corner as it has the highest chance of cracking. Now that the holes have been drilled, introduce a disiccate package through one of them to eliminate the moisture. The disiccant along with air entering the space in between two glass panes through the hole will get the moisture out and impede condensation.
To remove the grime and spider web, use a wire with a clean sock taped to its end. Insert this diy duster through the hole and wipe the grime in between the glass panes. It might be a tedious task so make patience your best friend, act gently and don’t use excess force as it can lead to glass damage and personal injury. Alernatively, you can use a drain snake to wipe the dust and dirt.
Another way to keep the condensation and fog in check is to aim a fan on the window holes. It will make the air circulate in and out of the window, speeding up water evaporation. While this method is effective, it will come to a point in the future where it would be more reasonable to reseal the panes or replace the window than keep the fan running every day. But as a short-term solution that delays the window replacement it will do. It’s very important to understand that sooner or later you will have to replace the window. And to some extent you should be interested in it because you need insulation to keep the energy bill low.
A dehumidifier can go a long way in keeping moisture at bay. Place it next to the holes you have drilled and let it pull the condensed moisture out. Turn the dehumidifier off as soon as it has successfully removed the layer of fog from the window. Reactivate it when particles of water start to reappear on the back side of the glass panes. In this way, you will save energy and keep your bills from exploding.
General tips for cleaning windows
People wondering how to clean double pane window pane may also know how to properly clean the outside of the glass panes. Here are tips to help you with this.
1. Do not apply glass cleaner on dust
Before you apply glass cleaner, wipe the loose dirt and dust off. It will prevent the dirt from becoming a mud-like mess when you spray the cleaner on it. Either wipe the dust with a microfiber cloth or vacuum it using the narrow attachment. Use a soap and warm water mixture to scrub the tough dirt and grease buildups.
2. Clean without leaving marks
Use a proper cleaning technique to minimize streaks. Start from the top left corner and work your way to the bottom, performing strictly horizontal streaks. Take another section and go over it top to bottom. Do not use a chaotic wiping technique. It will leave ugly marks.
3. Use a microfiber cloth
Do not use paper towel, newspaper, kitchen rug or squeegee to clean the window, as they will leave noticeable marks. Always go for a reusable microfiber cloth to minimize streaks and make the glass shine as new.
How to clean double pane windows is a tricky question. While the exterior is easy clean, the main challenge is cleaning inside the window which is quiet difficult but not impossible. If the seal has failed and the window got foggy, it’s time to think of replacing the window. If you want to postpone replacement, use the diy methods for moisture and grime removal mentioned above.