How do deep clean window blinds, and whether you can use an ultrasonic blind cleaning machine for them?
These are among the commonest questions I receive from property owners who have installed them in their homes or offices. Let’s address them here in our definitive guide.
Window blinds are centuries-old devices that regulate the amount of light brought into a room while also providing privacy.
While they offer many advantages, cleaning them can be a chore.
There is a relatively new cleaning technique called “ultrasonic blind cleaning” that can efficiently clean blinds.
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What is Ultrasonic Blind Cleaning?
Simply put, it’s a cleaning technique that employs sonic waves to safely remove dirt, grease, stain, and odor from window blinds and shades.
The ultrasonic cleaner device, which was previously used only for cleaning jewelry and sensitive medical and dental equipment, is now becoming more popular in the window treatment industry due to its highly efficient damage-free cleaning technology.
Ultrasonic cleaners for window blinds use high-frequency sound waves that generate millions of bubbles on the microscopic level.
When the blind is fully submerged and it comes into contact with water, the tiny bubbles implode, which creates the small vibrations that help to clean blinds efficiently.
This means that ultrasonic blind cleaning machines remove the dust, dirt, and debris in a manner that leaves behind little to no residue.
Ultrasonic blind cleaning is much more beneficial than simple hand cleaning, which can be most of the time very time-consuming.
This fast and eco-friendly process is usually done by professionals in shops, mobile vans, or even at home.
The good thing is it works on virtually all types of window blinds from mini and micro to vertical, horizontal, roller, Silhouettes, Luminettes, Roman, and more.
It will work as long as the blinds fit into the device and are resistant to water.
Most homeowners choose to replace the blinds when they get old and dirty.
While this seems to be fine with low-cost shades like vinyl blinds, getting the expensive ones (like metal, faux wood, bamboo, etc.) cleaned professionally is a more cost-effective solution in the long run.
The prices charged by professional blind cleaning services may range from $10 to $30 per unit.
But it will usually depend on the type of blinds, their size, and condition.
When hiring a professional blind cleaning company, remember that some may charge on a per-blind basis, and there are others who may charge by the linear foot.
The best is to check online and get quotes before getting their services. Make sure you ask them about their minimum visiting charge and if they can visit your home to get things clear.
How to Use Ultrasonic Blind Cleaning Machine?
Ultrasonic blind cleaning is mostly done by professionals, but if you want, you can do it yourself in a DIY way.
However, to use an ultrasonic blind cleaner properly, you’ll need to have the right items and follow the appropriate steps to ensure the blinds are properly cleaned.
Typically, you do not need much when renting/buying an ultrasonic Venetian blind cleaner machine, as the device does most of the work on its own.
You can refer to the manual to ensure that you have everything needed, but in general, you should have the following (in addition to the Sonic cleaner device);
- Clean Rag or Dusting Mitts
- Water and Cleaning Solution
- Drying Rack or Clothesline or Table
Now that you have what you need, the next step is setting up an area where you can clean the blinds.
Removing and cleaning window blinds outdoors is preferred since it will speed up the drying time, but any space will do as long as it is large enough.
Steps for Using an Ultrasonic Cleaner for Blinds
Window blinds are largely exposed to direct sunlight, heat, and UV rays that turn them look yellow with time.
The yellowing you see can be, however, cleaned by cleaning the blinds in a bleach bath. Submerge them completely for about 10-15 minutes until you are satisfied with the color.
For deep cleaning your shades once in a while, you can follow the steps below:
Step 1 – Remove The Dust
To maximize the efficiency of the ultrasonic cleaner, you’ll first want to dust the Venetian blinds with a rag or dusting mitts. If you want, you can use cans of compressed air.
The fewer dust, grime, and nicotine stains present, the better the ultrasonic blind cleaner will work.
You do not need to scrub the blinds; simply get rid of the excess deposited dust.
Step 2 – Add The Water and Solution
Now you can use the ultrasonic cleaner on the blinds. Be sure that the cleaner you get is large enough to cover the blinds without having to bend them.
If there is no water in the cleaner, you will need to add it before you start. Plus, put in a small amount of ultrasonic cleaning solution to the water.
This will break up the surface tension, which cleans the blinds properly while creating more bubbles.
Step 3 – Put The Blinds In The Cleaner Machine
Once you are ready, put the blinds inside the blind holder that comes with the cleaner. The blinds must be fully submerged for the device to work properly.
Add more water if needed to ensure that the blinds are submerged.
Once secured, you can now turn on the ultrasonic cleaner and let it work for the time as described in the manual.
Step 4 – Dry The Window Blinds
When the allotted time is over, check the blinds to see if they have been properly cleaned.
Now you will need to dry them by draining the water and letting them sit for at least a half-hour.
For this, place the blinds on a drying rack or hang them from the clothesline if you have one. Putting them on a table is fine if you do not have either.
It may take only a few minutes for the blinds to dry, so check them every five to ten minutes to see if they are ready.
Step 5 – Reinstall The Blinds Back
Once dry, you can return them to the window and put them in the next set of blinds.
While this process may take time if you have several mini blinds to clean, the result is well worth it.
Note: The process mentioned above can be used for mini blinds and may not be feasible for blinds that are large in size.
If you have large window blinds to be cleaned, it’s better to contact a professional cleaning service that uses large bulky units to ultrasonically clean the blinds.
As an alternative, you can also consider the below-mentioned ways to clean the shades without using an automatic cleaning machine.
How to Clean Blinds without an Ultrasonic Cleaner?
One of the best advantages of using horizontal Venetian blinds is it enables you to adjust and customize the amount of light you want to enter into your room.
However, while providing privacy, the blinds and shades at your place also get exposed to fingerprint smudges, dust particles, and condensation causing them to get dull and dirty.
The dust particles and a lot of allergens (such as dead insects, pet dander, and pollen) get deposited on them over time, which is responsible for the unhygienic environment in your home/office.
Although you can deep clean the extremely dirty blinds using an ultrasonic cleaning device, regular cleaning of the wooden blinds is important and should be on your to-do list at least once or twice a month.
The different ways in which you can do it are as follows:
✅ Dry Cleaning the Window Blinds
Quick-dry cleaning of the window blinds is often recommended for horizontal/vertical blinds with materials like wood, fabric, and honeycomb.
You can use this method for cleaning the hanging blinds without removing them from the bracket.
Step 1. Using a disposable dusting mitt, lamb’s wool duster, or a brush attachment on your vacuum, gently remove the debris and loose dust on the shades.
We recommend using the brush on your vacuum since it uses less suction and is gentler on the blinds.
Also, it grabs and holds the dust without releasing it into the air.
While brushing makes sure that you start dusting from the top and clean in a downward direction. This will prevent slats from getting unhooked.
Step 2. If you are dealing with fabric or vinyl blinds, you can additionally use a rubber dry cleaning sponge.
This will remove the stubborn debris that remained unremoved by vacuum or duster.
If you want, you can use an all-purpose spray cleaner to clean the soiled areas.
Care that you do not spray it directly onto the slats. Instead, spray it on a dry cloth or cotton to rub it on the stained spot.
Step 3. If you are cleaning the cellular shades (also known as honeycomb blinds), you should know that these come with a gap.
These gaps are like a “cell” of air between the front and back sides of the shade.
Removing the dust from these types of shades can be tricky and should be done with compressed air using the brush attachment of your vacuum.
✅ Washing Dirty Blinds In A Bathtub
This is a method you can employ when you want to remove the deposited grime, smoke residue, soot, and contaminants from the surface of mini-blinds.
Made up of fabric, vinyl, plastic, fiber, or metal (like aluminum or steel), blinds, when installed in a place like your kitchen, may attract a lot of greases.
Using some basic solutions and supplies at home, you can follow these easy steps for deep cleaning:
Step 1. Fill your bathtub with lukewarm water and add 2 tbsp. of liquid dish soap to create a mild soapy solution.
Step 2. Open up the blind slats and remove them from the brackets; use a step ladder if required.
While removing the blinds, make sure you follow the instructions provided by the manufacturer if available.
Step 3. Now soak the blind (one slat at a time) in the soapy water for 2-3 minutes to remove the stains.
Step 4. Using a clean cotton cloth, wipe down the blind’s top and bottom to remove the deposited grime.
Step 5. Now using a showerhead, you can rinse the window blind with fresh warm water to get them cleaned.
Step 6. Now using a showerhead, you can rinse the window blind with fresh warm water to get them cleaned.
You can use a bucket and a mug to pour water, in case there is no showerhead available.
Step 7. Now remove the cleaned-up window blind from the tub and lay it down on the fresh towels for about 2-30 minutes.
Step 8. Let it air dry itself, and make sure that you do not use any kind of dryer to dry it, as it can damage the material of the blind.
Step 9. If you see any remaining moisture, you can wipe down the blind slat with a cotton swab or a clean cotton cloth.
Step 10. Now repeat the above process for washing the other slats of the window blinds.
After you have cleaned and dried them up, reinstall the blinds on the brackets.
Additional Tips and Advice for Getting Most from Your Shades
Cleaning your window shades, blinds, vanes, and coverings can be easier than you think.
Since it’s an investment worth protecting, by following certain tips and advice, you can enjoy most of the benefits they offer for a long.
Some of these tips include:
✓ Always install high-quality shades (with good insulation) for better energy saving. Energy-efficient cellular shades are the best to get.
✓ Clean your cellular window shades weekly by quickly vacuuming them.
This will help keep them up while minimizing the need for thorough deep cleaning and ultrasonic washing.
✓ Do not use hot water to clean the fabric shades. It may make them lose their sizing along with fire-retardant and soil repellent features.
✓ When spot cleaning your cellular blinds, avoid too much exposure to water.
Since these blinds use glue for holding their fabric in the shape of cells, water may weaken or dissolve the glue and can damage the shades.
✓ In case you have any doubts about the material of the product or the cleaning procedure to be used on them, it’s good to contact the manufacturer or a professional cleaning service.
Blinds are often made using a tough, durable material. Most manufacturers warranty their blinds to last for at least five years.
However, with good cleaning and maintenance, you may even make them last for more than a decade.
Since you can damage them while cleaning, do not try to clean them on your own.
Hire a professional service if you really want to get the most out of your shades and enhance their durability.