Three Easy Ways to Clean Vinyl Mini Blinds
How to clean mini blinds two easy ways plus one more for the tough grime
Got a favorite household chore? - Or One you dread the most?
What housecleaning chore do you dread most?
First, let me admit up front I'm a lazy housekeeper. Mini blinds? I'd rather clean the toilet than wrestle with those pesky slats, and let's face it: there is NO super-easy way to clean mini blinds. The three methods on this page are the easiest I've discovered, after years of experimenting with different methods and tools.
The good news is, all three methods work well, and with the least amount of effort I've found so far. I'd still rather clean the toilet.
When I close the blinds at night, after all the buses, trucks and cars on our busy street have spewed their grime and grease, I don't want waves of black crud staring back at me.
Don't you just hate how mini-blinds feel if you have to fiddle with them when they're dirty? I surely do.
After living ten years in the city with four--count 'em--four big bay windows clad in mini-blinds--that's three sets per window, or 12 separate sets catching all that outside dirt, I've hunted down--and invented--a few tricks for keeping my only window coverings clean with a lot less effort than it took in the beginning.
If you hate cleaning your blinds as much as I do, you may find the three methods on this page helpful, as well as time-saving.
Routine maintenance is the key to minimizing the drudgery. If you fall behind on the routine maintenance, though, there is a fairly easy solution coming up for getting those blinds spiffy.
Routine Maintenance Method #1: Use a good portable vacuum weekly to keep the grime and dust at bay
Easiest method of them all, if done routinely
Make sure you have good contact with the brush end of the hose.
Close the blinds with the slats down and vacuum the entire side, then close again with the slats up and vacuum the other side. This method works best if done regularly with a powerful, hand-held vacuum.
This Black and Decker model has enough suction to remove the blind-coating, greasy, black soot that blows from the diesel trucks and buses plying our street 24-hours a day.
Since I got it, keeping the blinds and window sills clean is a whole lot easier. It also does a good job cleaning moldings, chair rails and upholstery, as well as picking up dry spills like the grandbaby's cracker crumbs.
I chose this cordless vacuum because of the reviews, because it was relatively light weight, and because of its longer reach. It's a good decision.
Foam ear plugs save the hearing
This handsome little vacuum dude is a screecher, so I bought a pack of earplugs. With some hearing impairment in one ear that requires me to wear a hearing aid, I want to protect my good ear and prevent further hearing loss in the other.
Watch how easy it is to use this cordless vacuum cleaner
Routine Maintenance Method #2 : The old sock method
Cover your hand with an old sock. Dip it in white vinegar and rub each slat with the dampened sock between your thumb and index finger. To prevent water spots, follow immediately with a dry sock. It's fairly easy to get the hang of it with a sock on each hand.
When cleaning with the sock method, in addition to a pair of old socks, you will need the following tools and supplies.
A sturdy stepstool
Prevent accidents! Always use a sturdy step stool like this one when cleaning blinds and windows. Never trust chairs or flimsy stools to keep you safe.
2 Small Pails or Wash Pans
Two small containers or buckets come in handy, one for water, one for the vinegar. Periodically rinse your wet sock in plain water before refreshing the vinegar. That way, you do not carry dirt from one slat to the next
White vinegar is the number one cleaning agent for people who want or need to avoid harsh chemicals while maintaining a sparkling clean home.
Make sure your vinegar is vegetable or grain-based and not derived from petroleum distillates
To avoid transferring dirt from dirty blinds to clean ones, work from left to right if you are right handed, or from right to left, if you are left handed.
If your blinds are super grimy and you cannot or do not want to use the bathtub method coming up, try a combination of the vacuum method and the sock method with this more intensive cleaning solution by Kaye Wagner on eHow.
Method #3: The tub method, less often, more intense
Easiest way to get long-term grime off your blinds
Soak blinds in tub for about 15 minutes, using a dilute solution of vinegar, baking soda and a smidgen of dish soap.
When I was working 60-80 hours a week, I did not have energy or time to clean my blinds regularly. Once or twice a year, I would take them down, one at a time, and clean them in the tub using a dilute solution of ammonia and water. This toxic, unfriendly method was quick and otherwise easy, but the fumes were dangerous for me and my family.
Eventually, I found a much safer method, using vinegar, baking soda and a smidgen of dish soap. Blogger Kelly of The Complete Guide to (Imperfect) Homemaking describes it best here.
While a dilute ammonia solution rinses off with little effort, you will want to rinse the vinegar and soap solution a few more times to remove all soap film (the vinegar helps with that). If you don't rinse well, residue soap film will attract more dust to the blinds.
Drain the water from the tub and let the blinds sit another fifteen minutes or so, while gravity carries away more water. This is a good time to clean the window, sash and sills so everything is sparkling when you hang the blinds.
Never, ever, ever mix bleach or products containing bleach, with vinegar or with ammonia. When combined, these products release a deadly gas.
- Bleach And Ammonia - Don't Mix These Items Together
Learn why you should never mix bleach and ammonia together for cleaning or stain removal, and what happens if you do mix ammonia and bleach together.
That's it, we're done! Enjoy the view
How do you prefer to clean your blinds? Do you have another way you clean them? Please share in the comments below, and thank you for visiting this page.
© 2013 Kathryn Grace