Dirty blinds or shutters make your home look dark and messy. Homeowners often don’t clean these areas because the task seems daunting. Learn easy ways to keep blinds and shutters clean and free of dust, so your home is open to natural light.
How to Clean Blinds
Blinds are off-putting to clean because they have so many slats. A simple tip to clean dirty blinds is to use an old sock to wipe off dust. Put a sock over your hand and run it along each slat. The dust will stick to the sock and your blinds will be much cleaner. As an added bonus, indoor air quality improves.
To clean the blinds, use the same sock strategy. This time, mix a cleaning solution of 1 quart water: 1 tsp. ammonia. Dip the sock in the cleaning solution, then wipe the blind, holding the slat between your fingers and your thumb.
While this trick will work for dirt and dust, old blinds may have layers of debris. In this case, it’s often faster to take off the blinds and let them soak in a cleaning solution. Add a squirt of dish soap to the ammonia solution, because the soap and hot water will dissolve sticky grime. Once the blinds have soaked for 15 minutes, clean each slat, rinse the blinds, and hang them on a line to dry.
How to Clean Shades
Shades are difficult to clean in place. Remove the shade and fully extend it, tacking down each corner with a heavy object (such as a rock). Wipe the shade with a dust rag, then clean one side using the water-ammonia mixture. Rise off the shade and flip it over to clean the second side. Allow shades to air dry before reinstalling them.
How to Clean Shutters
Shutters gather dirt and debris in their slats. Homeowners often don’t think about cleaning shutters. Dust and pollen can be dislodged with a squirt from a garden hose. Annually, you may want to take down and clean shutters. Here, adding dish soap to the hot water and ammonia solution works well, because shutters tend to accumulate grime. Go after stubborn spots with a soft-bristle scrub brush. Rinse off the cleaning solution with water, and let shutters air dry before you hang them.
When you understand the best way to clean shutters, shades, and blinds, you can attend to these tasks before the dust gets out of control. The best time to clean is in late spring, after heavy pollen has passed.