woman cleaning window treatments

How to Clean Your Window Treatments: Shades, Blinds, Shutters, & Drapery

In Maintenance & Cleaning by Specialty Drapery

Regularly cleaning your window treatments keeps them looking their best and maximizes their longevity. The key to maintaining their appearance is adhering to a regular cleaning schedule. Once dust and dirt start building up, getting window treatments back into mint condition can be challenging. How you should clean your window treatments largely depends on their style and material. Vacuuming, dusting, or a combination of both will typically do the trick. But sometimes more rigorous cleaning methods are required to rid your window treatments’ grime.

How Often Should I Clean My Window Treatments?

The frequency at which window treatments should be cleaned depends on the habits and needs of a home’s occupants. As dust and odors cling to materials, particularly fabrics, homes with smokers or people with allergies require more regular window treatment cleanings. Furry family members also impact the frequency at which you should clean your window treatments.

Generally speaking, you should dust your window treatments as often as you vacuum your floors and wipe off flat surfaces. At a minimum, this cleaning should occur once a month. Incorporate a deep cleaning into your window treatment maintenance once a quarter. To help you remember the last time you performed a deep cleaning, aim for the first day of each season.

How to Clean Shades

Roman & Balloon Shades

How you clean Roman and balloon shades depends on the fabrics from which they’re made. Some fabrics are washable, while others are not. Lower the shades as far as they will go. Using the fabric attachment for your vacuum cleaner and working from top to bottom, vacuum the fabric in horizontal strokes.

Roller Shades

Roller shades are extremely simple to maintain. Extend the shade to full-length, and vacuum with the upholstery attachment or dust with a feather duster on both sides of the material.

Cellular Shades

To clean cellular shades, dust them with a feather duster or vacuum them with the upholstery attachment on both sides. Then, use a hairdryer on the coolest, lowest setting to dislodge any buildup within the cells. If you notice any stains or discoloration, you can use a sponge, warm water, and a mild detergent to lightly clean the shades. Make sure the shades are fuller dry before raising them.

Woven Shades

Similar to roller shades, woven shades require minimal maintenance. Dust or vacuum both shades of the material when extended to full-length.

How to Clean Blinds & Shutters

Lower your blinds all the way and keep the slats slanted downward. Then, working from top to bottom and side to side, use a soft dust cloth or feather duster to wipe down each slat. Next, turn the slats upward, and repeat the process. Lastly, run a dryer sheet over the blinds to help repel dust, making your job easier next time.

If your blinds are made of real natural wood, use a microfiber cloth to apply furniture polish to the front, back, and sides of each slat after dusting.

The cleaning process and required supplies for shutters are quite similar to blinds. Beginning with the slats slanted downward, work from top to bottom and side to side to clean each slat with a soft dust cloth or feather duster. Repeat the process with the slats slanted upward. If the slats are stationary, work from the opposite side of the shutter to reach the slats from a different angle. Also, remember to dust around the frame. Again, complete the process by running a dryer sheet over the shutters to repel dust, and if the shutters are made of real natural wood, use a microfiber cloth to apply furniture polish.

How to Clean Drapery

When determining how to clean your drapery, consider the style and type of fabric. The more complex the design, the more meticulous you must be in your cleaning. Even if the fabric is washable, keeping up with dusting and vacuuming will be your best bet for preserving the beauty of your window treatments. Spend extra time in the folds and creases, as dust and dirt are most likely to collect in those areas. Dust or vacuum both sides of the fabric, and spot clean the material as you notice any blemishes. Just like with clothing, the longer a stain sits on the fabric, the harder it will be to get out.

Keep Your Window Treatments Looking Their Best

Whether you have shades, blinds, or drapery, maintaining a consistent cleaning schedule is crucial to keeping them looking like new. After helping you select your dream window treatments, the design consultants at Specialty Drapery can walk you through the suggested cleaning regimen tailored to the style and material you chose. Diligent cleaning of your window treatments allows you to enjoy them for years to come!

Since 1967, Specialty Drapery has provided the highest quality of window treatment and lighting control solutions to the Mid-Atlantic region. We pride ourselves on our attention to detail and relentless pursuit of customer delight. Contact us to schedule your design consultation.