It’s an all-too-familiar situation to homeowners in Vancouver and Surrey: you run the squeegee down the windowpane only to frustratingly blame the tool when those nasty streaks get left behind. The cold hard truth is that streaks often come down to technique rather than tool. The climate here doesn’t help either. The good news is that there’s a secret technique handed down from generation to generation of window cleaners that helps us get glistening, streak-free windows every time. It’s difficult to master but worth the time and effort.
Here’s the secret on how to squeegee like a pro and get no-streak windows!
If you’ve got a bottle of glass cleaner in one hand and a roll of paper towels in the other, you’re already behind the game. Think of paper towels as one big, cellulose fibre-made window streak. Instead of glass cleaner, use some sunlight detergent and water. You don’t need much soap, just enough so you’ve got some foamy suds action (but not too much).
And of course, don’t forget the squeegee.
How to Use a Squeegee Like a Pro: Cutting Down the Mountain
When most people start cleaning their windows, they do the “straight job” technique. Whatever your name for it, it basically goes like this:
- Spray cleaner on the window
- Run the squeegee straight along the window
- Dry it and repeat
While this is better than nothing, it won’t get the job done right. There’s a better way.
The “S” Technique
The “S” technique is based on the idea that a straight pull of the squeegee leaves about an inch of water that ends up dripping down onto the clean glass (read: streaks). If you come at the soap at an angle, it will cut the water perfectly. It doesn’t matter where you start, as long as you just come back over where you started. We recommend starting in the middle. Here’s a basic visual for you get an idea:
- Start with the squeegee at an angle and wipe the top middle clean.
- Drag the squeegee over to the top left corner and down to the bottom left, gradually turning the tool to reverse the angle on the way down. Do the same back up and over to the top right.
- Once you’re in the top right, drag it down to the bottom right corner. The shape you should have left almost looks like a big hill or “mountain” in the middle of the window.
- Now, start cutting it down. What we mean by that is dragging the squeegee at an angle (not straight up) back and forth across the soap that’s left until you’ve got only one squeegee swipe left at the bottom.
After your last swipe to get the window clean, use the squeegee to get all of the water off the ledge. Now, all you have left is about one finger-width of water on the edge of the windowpane. Stick your finger into a towel and run it along the edge to clean up the last remaining bits of water.
The result is a streak-free shine so nice that your neighbours will ask if you had the window cleaning pros at Diamond Clean over. We know this technique isn’t easy to master. It even takes our pros endless hours of training in the field to master. If you feel like you need some help and want the brightest shine in the Vancouver Area, just let us know.