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Do you have a washing machine?


Clean Your Drapes and Blinds

Why Do This?

Your drapes and blinds may look clean, but they can collect a surprising amount of dust, oil, pollution, smoke, pollen and bacteria. Pleats are also a favorite nesting ground for spiders! Clean your window treatments regularly to remove grime and keep spiders at bay.

Time: 15 minutes

What You'll Need

  • vacuum cleaner
  • mild detergent
  • rubber sponge (if your blinds are plastic)
  • duster

How To:

Need a hand? To hire a professional housecleaner, visit Angie's List to find a service provider in your area.

  1. 1

    Clean your drapes: Your drapes will stay cleaner if you care for them every day. You don’t need to go all out! Just gently shake them once a day to keep dirt and dust from lodging in the fabric.

  2. 2

    Once a month, vacuum your drapes. If you have pets, you might want to vacuum weekly because of the extra allergens they’ll bring into your home. You can do this without taking them down. If your vacuum has a soft brush attachment, use that! If not, use a handheld vacuum cleaner. Be gentle when you vacuum so your drapes don’t get pulled away from their rod or fastening. Start at the top of each drape and work your way down. Make sure to get inside the pleats to remove any cobwebs and spiders.

  3. 3

    If your drapes smell stale, then vacuuming isn’t enough. To remove stale odors, remove the drapes from the rod. If your drapes are small and can fit in your sink, it’s best to hand wash them with cool water and a mild detergent. If you’d prefer to machine wash them, also use cool water and mild detergent. Don’t overload your washer with other clothes because the drapes won’t get clean! Instead, let them run through a cycle on their own.

  4. 4

    To dry your drapes, it’s best to line dry them so they don’t shrink. If that isn’t possible, tumble-dry them on a delicate or air setting. Remove them from the dryer immediately once they’re dry to avoid wrinkles! If you want to iron your drapes, only press on the reverse side, not on the front of your drapes. This will prevent damage.

  5. 5

    Clean your blinds: There’s no need to remove your blinds – you can clean them right where they are! Vacuum your blinds often with a brush attachment, moving from left to right on the slates. Never move up and down, which can damage the slates!

  6. 6

    When you dust, also move from left to right and not up and down.

  7. 7

    If your blinds are vinyl, use a dry, rubber sponge (found at your local hardware store) and rub firmly across the blinds to remove dust and dirt.

  8. 8

    If you have wooden blinds, use a moist cloth to wipe them down. Wring out your cloth thoroughly before wiping your blinds to avoid soaking the wood, which can cause warping.

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