Vertical blinds might be a staple in office buildings, but they can also add a stylish touch to a more modern home. They look easy to clean, but at times, they can be pretty difficult. It's not like you can throw them in the wash, after all. Did you ever wonder how to clean vertical blinds? A little research yielded some pretty interesting results online.
Disclosure: We may get commissions for purchases made through links in this post.
The easiest and fastest way to clean vertical blinds is to use a microfiber blind cleaner to wipe the dust off several blinds in one stroke. However, you can also wipe them down with warm soapy water, using a standard soft sponge to scrub away any stains. After wiping your blinds down, lay them flat and let them air dry.
Cleaning your blinds the wrong way can cause them to warp or get stained. If you want to ensure your blinds will stay beautiful for long, you'll keep reading our guide.
Cleaning Your Vertical Blinds: Methods To Use
Vertical blinds are one of the more perplexing types of window treatments when it comes to cleaning, primarily because there are so many different ways to clean them. To make it easier to find a method that works well for you, we decided to parse the most common basic cleaning methods out individually.
The Microfiber Cleaner
There are now companies that make microfiber blind cleaners that have multiple slats to help make cleaning faster. These work as good dusting tools, so if you need to give your blinds a dusting, this will be a good choice. This method works best on blinds that are plastic, acrylic, or wood.
The Classic Wipedown
If you don't want to buy a specialized tool but have standard "office-style" blinds made out of plastic, there's another easy way to clean vertical blinds. Here's how:
- Start by removing your blinds from the rods.
- Mix three cups of water with a tablespoon of dish soap. (You can also use a mixture of one part vinegar to three parts water if you've got major stains.)
- Grab a soft sponge, dip it in the water, and then use it to wipe down each blind.
- Let the blinds lay flat, not overlapping, to dry.
- Once they're dry, hang them up again on your headrail.
The Fabric Method(s)
Do you have vertical blinds that are made of fabric? Things tend to get a little more difficult when you have the fabric in play. However, there are still reliable ways to clean your blinds. More specifically, you can use a handheld vacuum with a brush attachment for casual dusting, or you can use a handheld steam cleaner for a deeper clean.
Cleaning Wooden Blinds
Wooden blinds add a foresty, rustic touch to any home, but they can be difficult to clean. In fact, you shouldn't try to use a steam cleaner or a vacuum on them at all. Washing them, too, is a no-go. Dusting them is best, but adding some wood cleaner to a paper towel and wiping your blinds down individually is best if you need a little polish.
Though any wood cleaner will work fairly well, it's often best to stick with a cleaner with UV protection built into it. This will help prevent wood bleaching due to the harsh rays of the sun. (They are great for blocking out light, you know!)
Can You Wash Fabric Vertical Blinds?
Though it is not always recommended, some fabric blinds are allegedly safe for machine washing. However, it's important to make sure that you do it the right way. If you want to try to machine-wash (or fully wash) your vertical blinds, this is what you need to do:
- Make sure that your blinds are actually machine washable. If they are not, do not attempt this.
- Roll your blinds up gently before you place them in the machine. To further protect your blinds, place them in a pillowcase before you wash them.
- Use a mild detergent, and don't bleach your blinds. Most fabric blinds cannot handle bleach while being tumbled around in a washing machine.
- When you turn on the washing machine, make sure that it's on the gentlest cycle and that you set it on a warm setting.
Once your blinds are done getting washed, lay them flat to dry them off. Do not hang them until they are completely dry.
How Do You Freshen Up Fabric Blinds?
Fabric blinds have a remarkable way of catching odors, but you don't have to put up with smelly blinds if you don't want to. There's a quick fix to this that doesn't involve dragging your blinds to the cleaners. All you need to do is spray a fabric deodorizer like Febreze on it, and you should notice the scent dissipate.
Should You Get Your Fabric Blinds Professionally Cleaned?
If you have fabric blinds that are not machine-washable or don't seem like they'll do well with your washer, it's best to get your blinds professionally cleaned. This is especially true if you are unsure of how well this will turn out for you. Since professionals have tons of experience and better tools than a typical homeowner does, it's safe to assume you're better off going with them.
How Often Should You Clean Your Blinds?
Believe it or not, most homes don't need to clean blinds too often. If you do not smoke, you can get away with cleaning your blinds once to twice a year. If you are a regular smoker who smokes indoors, then you may need to do it once every three months or more. However, most people don't smoke inside, so that's more of an exception to the rule than anything else.
How Do I Get My Vertical Blinds White Again?
Over time, vertical blinds can get a little yellow due to exposure from dust and other debris. Most people assume that they are gone for good when they turn yellow, but that's not always the case. Here's how you can lighten your blinds once more:
- Remove the blinds from the headrail and place them in your bathtub.
- Turn the bathtub faucet on and fill the tub with cold water.
- Add two cups of liquid bleach to the tub's water.
- Let the blinds soak in the water for 10 to 12 minutes. Take this time to put on rubber gloves.
- Grab a sponge and gently wipe down both sides of your blinds. You should see the yellowing fall off.
- Drain the tub, grab the blinds, and place them on a towel.
- Use another towel to wipe down each slat individually, then lay out the blinds to dry on a flat surface.
- When your blinds are totally dried, hang them back up on the headrail. Enjoy your crisp, white blinds!
Keeping blinds of any type will require you to have an occasional cleaning session. It's just part of regular home maintenance and part of keeping your home looking nice. While blinds are not quite as low-maintenance as heavy curtains, they are still relatively easy to clean as long as you know what to do.
No matter what type of blinds you have, it's best to seek out a method known for being appropriate for the material that your blinds are made of. When in doubt, having your blinds professionally cleaned is your best bet. Choosing your cleaning method, though, is all up to you. With a little bi-annual maintenance, you should expect your blinds to sparkle for years to come.