I don’t know about you, but dusting has always been a chore I found tiresome. While it’s definitely much less of a workout than vacuuming, I’ve never enjoyed doing it.
Perhaps it’s the futility of the task, knowing I will have to come back and do the exact same thing in a couple of day’s time? Maybe it’s that tickly feeling I get in the back of my throat (which probably means I’m allergic to dust, doesn’t it?)?
What I infinitely prefer to dusting is doing the dishes. True, we have a dishwasher now that does all the work for us, but I wouldn’t actually mind doing everything by hand. The dusting though I would happily never do again.
The bit of the house that I particularly abhor to clean are the blinds. They always seem to have managed to accumulate more dust than the last time around, and no matter how diligent I am with the vacuum cleaner, something is always still flying around.
So today, I thought we’d go over some tips on cleaning blinds: vertical, horizontal, venetian, roman, whatever kind you have. The principle is the same each time, but how you apply it is a tad different.
Here’s the process:
How to clean venetian blinds
The first thing to do when cleaning blinds is to get rid of all the dust, and then move on to removing any stains that may have somehow managed to find their way to your blinds.
If your venetian blinds are made of aluminium or PVC, chances are you will be able to use your trusty vacuum cleaner for this part of the job.
Use the soft brush attachment that came with it (if you haven’t decluttered it over the years, considering you hardly ever use it). Turn the vacuum cleaner on to a slow and gentle program, and start at the top of the blinds.
You might also want to check that you’re not inadvertently scratching the blinds, as the brush may be harsher than it appears at first glance.
If you are not causing any damage to the blinds, vacuum them thoroughly. You always want to start from the top and work your way down. You also want to vacuum them both completely closed, and open, so that no dust particle escapes your notice.
If you want to be especially thorough, you can go over your blinds with a duster as well, as it can trap any stubborn dust that has accumulated around the cords. There are blind dusters specifically made for these nooks and crannies which will be easier to use than a regular microfiber cloth.
If your blinds are stained, go over them with a damp microfiber cloth. You definitely don’t want it to be too wet, just moist enough to work the stains loose.
If you need to, you can use a blind cleaner too – it will work better on the stains, give your blinds a bit of a refresh and prevent static as well.
Always make sure the blinds are completely dry before you draw them up again.
How to clean wooden blinds
If on the other hand your blinds are made of wood, they will need a bit more TLC.
The vacuum cleaner won’t be as effective in this case, so you’ll have no choice but to use either a duster (blind-appropriate or otherwise) or a soft microfiber cloth to go over each individual blind. The same principle still applies: dust both your closed and your open blinds, one by one. This will require a step ladder, most likely.
If you want to be especially snazzy, you can get yourself a dusting glove that you can also use on all other delicate wooden items. Its main attraction lies in the fact that you will essentially just be running your gloved hand across the blinds, allowing for more control and a more thorough clean.
You are also not advised to get your wooden blinds wet, as damp can warp the wood. If you need to get a stain out, you can use a wood-appropriate cleaner, or a bit of soapy water which you carefully dry afterwards.
How to clean fabric blinds
Fabric blinds tend to accumulate the most dust, it’s simply their nature. While it can easily be dusted off a PVC or even a wooden blind, the fabric seems to absorb it and cling to it more, so cleaning your fabric blinds more often and more thoroughly is advised.
The same principle applies as before – remove any surface dust first. If there are stains, you can use a cloth and some dish soap to remove them. You can then dry your blinds with a hair dryer, if you don’t want to leave them to air dry.
Fabric blinds do need an actual wash every once in a while too, so you will need to take them off your window, and transport them to the tub.
Fill it with some warm soapy water and soak your blinds. Let them spend some time splashing around (figuratively), and then use a sponge to give them a bit of a scrub. Rinse them well and let them dry on a flat surface. It might take a day or two, but do hold off on hanging them back up until they are completely dry.
How to clean roman blinds
Roman blinds can be cleaned just like their venetian counterparts: first with a vacuum cleaner, then with the help of a duster if need be. Any stains can be removed with a damp cloth.
Be mindful not to draw the blinds up while they are wet, as this may cause damp to develop, and that will be much harder to get rid of.
Make sure your Roman blinds are not scratched by the vacuum, and include giving them a thorough dusting on your weekly to-do list.
How to clean roller blinds
The procedure is quite the same when it comes to cleaning roller blinds.
First, you want to draw them all the way down, and then reach for your trusty vacuum cleaner. Use the brush head to vacuum on both sides, being extra careful not to scratch the fabric.
Stains are ideally removed with plain water, or with a bit of mild detergent if they are very stubborn. Try not to use any harsh chemicals, as they may cause discoloration and fray the fabric.
It’s again very important to leave the blinds to fully dry before you draw them back up again, so you might have to contend with a darker space for a day or two. Great if the weather outside is completely frightful and snuggling on the sofa is called for.
How to clean vertical blinds
Vertical blinds, so incredibly popular in office spaces, are a pain in the neck to clean. And they also tend to get very dusty very quickly, so giving them a proper clean at least once a week should be mandatory.
You can clean them while they are still hanging on the rail, or you can remove them completely for a much more thorough clean.
If you’re going for option number one, vacuum any dust from each blind, on both sides, and don’t forget those bits in between that are usually the worst offenders.
You can then also reach for a duster and a damp cloth, to ensure there is not a speck left on them. Remember that any dust you kick up around damp blinds will settle on them, so leave any surface cleaning for another time, or get it out of the way before you start cleaning your vertical blinds.
If you choose to detach them completely and give them a proper wash, you’ll again want to take them to the bathtub. Soapy water is your best ally, so give them a good soak and let them marinade in there for a while. Rinse well and lay out flat to dry.
Also, depending on the kind of rail you have, be prepared for a certain level of frustration, as some blinds are notoriously difficult to reattach.
I bet you are now stealing glances towards your blinds, trying to remember when you last gave them a proper clean. Fret not, mine are not spotless either, and I am seriously considering getting Tom to whip the duster out.
And no, that was not a euphemism.