Homemade Outdoor Window Cleaner

4 Materials
20 Minutes

Chemistry Cachet is back with another science based DIY.

This cleaner is for outdoor windows, but it also works for indoor windows too! Be sure to read the blog post for instructions on that :) (chemistrycachet.com/homemade-outdoor-window-cleaner/)

This recipe is very easy to make, but it is also super cheap!



  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/2 cup white distilled vinegar (5% acidity)
  • 1/4 tsp blue Dawn ( Why blue dawn? Read more here)
  • Basic spray bottle
  • Sponge or scrub brush (You can also use a microfiber scrub brush)
  • Rubber hose with spray nozzle

Directions for mixing the DIY outdoor window cleaner:

  1. In your spray bottle, combine the water, vinegar, and dish soap.
  2. Set the nozzle to stream if possible which will make it easier to reach all the window area.

Curious about why these ingredients are used?? Or different methods for using this? Read the blog post here.

The Easiest Way To Clean Outdoor Windows With Our Homemade Outdoor Window Cleaner:

  1. Spray your window with the homemade cleaning solution. As we mentioned above, setting it to stream can help reach taller areas.
  2. With a sponge or scrub brush (use anything soft and safe for windows), scrub the window area as best you can.
  3. With a spray nozzle attached to the rubber hose, spray every part of the window making sure all the cleaner is removed.
  4. You can air dry or wipe with a microfiber cloth to dry!

You can also just SPRAY AND WIPE this solution! Be sure to read these tips in the blog post.

Before And After
Resources for this project:
See all materials
Any price and availability information displayed on [relevant Amazon Site(s), as applicable] at the time of purchase will apply to the purchase of this product.
Hometalk may collect a small share of sales from the links on this page.More info
Alexis @ Chemistry Cachet
Want more details about this and other DIY projects? Check out my blog post!
Frequently asked questions
Have a question about this project?
  3 questions
  • Ticia Ticia on Aug 09, 2020

    IDK if anyone's asked this previously but here goes - do you pre-wet the windows with the hose before spraying on your solution? I only ask because 1/2 cup each of vinegar and water isn't very much so if you are cleaning multiple windows, do you prepare the solution in a large batch or keep refilling your spray bottle with the same amounts all the time. Since I'm getting ready to do my windows, I'd like to know and what about streaking? (on the glass not the people kind). TIA

  • DMc DMc on Aug 10, 2020

    Wondering if this would work on plastic windows in a screen porch?

  • Ginger the farm gal Ginger the farm gal on Aug 19, 2020

    I use this also, but the cleanest windows and mirrors, I ever had were cleaned with kerosene and very hot water. What is your opinion of it?

Join the conversation
3 of 11 comments
  • Edie Burton Edie Burton on Aug 11, 2021

    Our town is adding a "salts" powder to drinking water to "soften" the water. The water spots inadvertently left behind dry white-ish. Windex/ammonia, Windex/ vinegar, 5% white vinegar undiluted...none of these remove the spotting on outside widows, glass stovetop ( in combo with baking soda), stainless pots and pans, bathroom/kitchen/basement sinks, unremoveable rings in toilet bowls AND a ruined hot water heater less than 10 yo (neighbor)! How to combat this chemical reaction on stainless steel, glass and and porcelain? Tried your formula; however, it didn't remove any, even smallest ( diameter) dried water spot. On Council members' agenda, a group asked, based on ruined appliances and spotty windows etc. all based on photographic, journaled evidence, tech assessment/recommendation based on observed in person results, to cease this "salts" addition to city water supply. "Insufficient, unimpeachable and non-scientific testing" was Council's reply. Help!

    • Window experts say the best thing to get salt off of windows is vinegar: https://www.americanwindowproducts.com/keep-windows-clean-coastal-towns-like-jacksonville/

      Something to keep in mind, hard water and salt can actually etch glass on things like windows or shower doors. If nothing seems to be removing it, you might have etching.I learned this from the company who installed my new shower door. We had a coating put on it because our old one didn't have one at it was damaged from hard water. Even though it wasn't that old and we cleaned it regularly. Just something to keep in mind.

      The only long term thing to do is get a water softener installed which we had to do in our lake town which had very very hard water and was ruining all of our surfaces.

  • Patty Patty on Feb 05, 2022

    Thanks for the tips