You can make your own safe and effective glass cleaner.

How to Make a Safe and Effective Homemade Glass Cleaner

Store-bought glass cleaners generally work well. However, they are also expensive, wasteful, and come with a whole host of toxic chemicals and additives, including monoethanolamine and butyl glycol. These added chemicals aren’t necessary for cleaning glass, and you probably don’t want them in your home environment.

As opposed to using a new spray bottle each time you buy glass cleaner at the store, you can reuse the same bottle over and over, when you make your own cleaning product at home. Also, it’s likely that you already have all the ingredients you need in your kitchen or pantry.

Making your own cleaning products is better for your home, the environment, and your pocket book. Here are three variations of safe and effective homemade glass cleaners:

1. Vinegar-Water Glass Cleaner

Homemade, vinegar-based glass cleaners are not only inexpensive and pretty effective, but are also much safer for your home and family than store-bought varieties.

What are the Advantages of Using Vinegar for a Glass Cleaner?

Using vinegar as the base for your glass cleaner has a number of benefits for your home and family. First, it is inexpensive. Vinegar is cheap and you probably already have some in your home. As you probably already know, vinegar is a valuable tool to have in your natural cleaning arsenal, and has numerous uses around the home.

Second, vinegar-based cleaners are natural and safe. They don’t have any harsh fumes, and you know exactly what’s in your cleaning product.

White vinegar can be used to make a safe and effective homemade glass cleaner.

White vinegar can not only be used to make homemade glass cleaner, but also has many other cleaning uses.

Finally, they work well. They are great at removing handprints, fingerprints, and all types of grime and dirt from glass. They also do not leave streaks.

How Do I Make a Vinegar Glass Cleaner?

First, you will need the following products that you likely already have.

  • White Vinegar (1 cup)
  • Water (1 cup)
  • Spray Bottle

Use equal parts vinegar and water to fill up the spray bottle. Then, simply use it like you would use a store-bought glass cleaner.

How Effective is It?

A glass cleaner made of only vinegar and water is pretty effective for most light glass cleaning. It’s not quite as effective as store bought cleaners, and may not be able to remove some stuck-on stains. Also, it might leave more streaks than store-bought cleaners or the other homemade cleaners listed below.

2. Vinegar and Alcohol Glass Cleaner

Vinegar and alcohol glass cleaners have all the benefits of a vinegar-based cleaner, plus they evaporate even more quickly, leaving clear, spot-free glass. A vinegar and alcohol mixture is actually very similar to what you find in many store-bought products, without any unnecessary chemicals, fragrances, or additives.

How Do I Make a Vinegar and Alcohol Glass Cleaner?

Assemble the following products:

  • White Vinegar (1 tablespoon)
  • Rubbing Alcohol (1 cup)
  • Water (1 cup)
  • Spray Bottle

For each batch of cleaner you make, mix one cup of alcohol with one cup of water and one tablespoon of vinegar. Simply fill up the spray bottle and use as an effective homemade glass cleaner.

How Effective is It?

Compared to the vinegar-water mixture, the alcohol-vinegar cleaner is more effective. It removes more stubborn stains and evaporates more quickly, leaving less streaks. However, it can still take a bit of elbow grease to get rid of very stubborn stains, such as hairspray.

3. Vinegar, Alcohol, and Cornstarch Glass Cleaner

Adding cornstarch to the vinegar and alcohol mixture gives it extra cleaning power, which reduces the amount of elbow grease you need to use to eliminate tough stains. It evaporates quickly, due to the alcohol, and is a great, and inexpensive, substitute for any store-bought brand.

A vinegar, alcohol, cornstarch mixture is good for cleaning glass.

Cornstarch is the key for making a more effective homemade glass cleaner.

How Do I Make a Vinegar, Alcohol, and Cornstarch Glass Cleaner?

Assemble the following products:

  • White Vinegar (1/2 cup)
  • Rubbing Alcohol (1/2 cup)
  • Water (1 cup)
  • Cornstarch (1 tablespoon)
  • Spray Bottle

Combine the vinegar, alcohol, water, and cornstarch in a spray bottle. Shake very well, until the ingredients are thoroughly mixed. Spray and wipe. Be sure to shake the bottle before each use, as the cornstarch may settle in the bottom after sitting for awhile.

How Effective is It?

This is, hands-down, the most effective of the glass cleaner recipes. The added cornstarch provides some grit to cut through the tough stains that the other mixtures have a harder time handling. It is just as effective as store-bought brands, is all-natural, and costs a fraction of the price. Also, it leaves your windows crystal clear and virtually streak-free.

Secret Tip for Streak-Free Glass

It might sound hard to believe, but many people use newspaper instead of paper towels to clean windows and glass. Not only does it save money on paper towels, but newspaper tends to actually leave less streaks. If you don’t have newspaper, a cleaning towel with a very tight-knit should also work well.

Storing and Labeling

  • Remember to always label your cleaner bottles. Make your labels clear and legible, and write exactly what the bottle contains, such as “Rubbing Alcohol and Vinegar Glass Cleaner.” You may also want to write the date that you made the product. Some mixtures can degrade over time, and if they are tool old, they may not work as well.
  • Always store cleaning products in a separate area from food and cooking ingredients. You don’t want to mistakenly use cleaning products for cooking.
  • Keep any cleaning products, homemade or otherwise, out of the reach of children and pets. Even though natural, some ingredients can cause irritation.
  • Store vinegar and alcohol cleaner in a cool cabinet that isn’t near a heat source. Rubbing alcohol is flammable.​
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Creative commons image credits: kalaya | Cornstarch mixed with water

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