Cleaning Your Window Tracks

You just spent a considerable amount of money to replace the windows in your home.

They are beautiful, now we are going to help you keep them that way.

Your window track is the space behind your window sill that holds your window in place and keeps out any breezes. However, all of the nooks and crannies means dust and dirt accumulate quickly. Not only is it unsightly, but the dirt can eventually lead to problems with how your windows open and close.

10 Tools to Window Track-Cleaning Win

Before we get started, here are the tools that you will need to clean your window tracks like a pro:

  • Spray bottle
  • White vinegar
  • Baking soda
  • Water
  • Dish soap
  • Paper towels
  • An old toothbrush
  • Wet rag
  • Spoon
  • Toothpick

The good news is that you don't need anything fancy to clean your window tracks well. Most likely, you already have each of these items in your home. Sophisticated tools or cleaning products don't necessarily make this task easier, and they aren't necessary to get the job done perfectly. Simple tools and techniques will give you the best results and be least likely to cause any damage to your windows or window tracks.

4 Simple Steps to Spotless Window Tracks

Step 1: Sprinkle baking soda over dirty window tracks

Take your spoon and cover the entire window track with baking soda. Don’t forget to add baking soda to the nooks and crannies of the window tracks – this is where the most amount of dirt tends to collect. This will help any tough substances stuck on your window tracks to become effortlessly removed.

The reason why baking soda is such an effective cleaner is because it is an alkali (a basic chemical compound which neutralizes with acid and has similar properties of breaking down other substances), meaning it helps grease and dirt dissolve more easily in water, though it is mild enough not to cause damage to surfaces like your window tracks. 

Step 2: Mix together water, dish soap and vinegar in the spray bottle

Mix equal parts of water and white vinegar inside of a spray bottle, then add a few drops of dish soap and shake the bottle. Spray the solution over the baking soda to mix it, making sure the window tracks are completely covered. Wait until the mixture bubbles (about 5 minutes).

In contrast to baking soda, vinegar is an acid. It has the ability to dissolve mineral deposits (another substance that can be tough to remove from the surface of your window tracks). When you see the mixture of vinegar and baking soda bubbling, this means that it is reacting (the two chemicals combine and neutralize, creating carbon dioxide and salt as a product of the reaction). 

Dish soap is a compound which both repels and attracts water molecules, as well as attracting water-repelling substances like grease so that they can be easily removed. It catches the dirt and grease which have been loosened by the baking soda and can be wiped away easily along with the remaining salt from the completed neutralizing reaction.

Step 3: Scrub the window tracks with the toothbrush

Take your toothbrush and start scrubbing. The small bristles will get into those corners and tight spaces to release the built-up dirt. The vinegar solution and baking soda will pull up dirt from your window tracks, making them look bright, shiny and new, and the various compounds work in a number of ways to remove any substances stuck to the surface of the window tracks.

If needed, you may apply more baking soda or vinegar in intervals (do not mix the two before applying them to the surface, because their dissolving properties will not work if they have already reacted before touching the surface you are trying to clean). You should allow time for each compound to rest on the surface and break down a bit before each time you start to scrub. If you are finding the scrubbing to be ineffective, try allowing more of the liquids to rest on your window tracks a little longer first.

Step 4: Use the toothpick to remove stubborn gunk

If some dirt is left behind that your toothbrush can’t tackle, bring out a toothpick. Use the toothpick to get into tight spots of the window track and dig out the dirt. Once you remove the gunk from the corners, give it one last wipe down with a wet rag or paper towel. 

Make sure you use a toothpick, not anything hard and sharp like a knife. Wood is soft and should not cause damage to your window tracks, but sharper tools or other materials (even if they aren't particularly sharp) can cause scratches.

Aim to clean your window tracks at least twice per year.

This will help prevent buildup from accumulating and make cleaning much easier. Remember to clean both vertical and horizontal window tracks for best results. Remember, keeping your windows in good condition will save you the cost of replacing damaged or broken parts or the entire window.

If your windows tracks have taken some damage, or if you are finding them particularly tough to clean due to a significant amount of build-up or simply age and wear, it may be time to have a professional repair or replace them. You may ever be noticing your windows becoming harder to move. When you do have difficulty opening and closing your windows, give Crystal Clear View Glass a call at 602-224-7900 and we can come out and see what is needed to get them moving smoothly again.

Whether working with businesses or individuals, everyone at Crystal Clear View Glass puts people first. It starts with Brandon, who hires self-directed professionals and empowers them to make a difference in every interaction. That culture is pervasive, from the team member who answers your call to the installer who expertly completes your glass project.