Your browser does not support JavaScript. Our site relies on JavaScript to function, please turn JavaScript on or use a browser that has JavaScript enabled.
The Ultimate Guide: How To Clean Blinds

The Ultimate Guide: How To Clean Blinds

Amy Kilvington

By Amy Kilvington

Content Writer at Blinds Direct
Mon 23 Mar 2020
Last updated Fri 20 Aug 2021

Do you want to keep your blinds looking great? Whether it’s a wooden blind, Roman blind, shutter or a pair of curtains, we’ve got all the know-how for cleaning your blinds quickly and effectively.

Discover the Blinds Direct ultimate guide for how to clean blinds and curtains, including how to remove stubborn stains, how to avoid fading, discolouration and damage, and the best tools to use, including our ostrich feather duster and slat cleaner. Looking for a specific guide? Jump straight to the right place:

Wooden blinds | Faux wooden blindsRoller blinds | Roman blinds | Vertical blinds
Day and Night blinds | Aluminium blinds | Shutters | Curtains

How to clean Wooden Blinds

photo of bathroom with stand alone bath tub next to window with white wooden blinds

Wooden blinds are very easy to clean, as long as you use the right techniques and products.

Dusting is one of the quickest and most effective methods for cleaning your wooden blinds. Use a slat cleaner, feather duster or a clean, dry cloth, wiping gently downwards so as not to not disturb the slats. Wipe once when the slats are open, and again when closed. This will remove all surface dust.

You can also use a gentle suction setting on your vacuum cleaner with a soft attachment. Do not use a vacuum cleaner unless you have a soft brush attachment, as your slats may become scuffed and scratched. Clean the slats from one end to the other, taking care not to knock or disturb the arrangement. You could take your blinds down to do this, but if possible, leave them hung for ease.

Any sticky patches or grease should be rubbed gently with a clean, damp cloth. You could also use washing up liquid. Baby wipes also work well to remove these types of marks. Don’t forget to go back with a dry cloth to absorb any residue. If possible, leave your windows open during and after the cleaning process to encourage the evaporation of any residual water.

Remember, excessive moisture can cause serious damage to wooden blinds. When saturated, the wood will expand, which can then lead to bending and breaking. Any stains, varnishes and finishes on the wooden slats may also fade and peel if the wrong products are used. With that in mind, you should try to avoid liquid or chemical products when cleaning your wooden blinds.

Top takeaways:

1. Very easy to clean

2. Use a slat cleaner, feather duster or dry cloth

3. Brush attachment on vacuum works well

4. Remove stubborn stains with care

5. Avoid liquid products

Cleaning Roller Blinds

image to show example of clean roller blinds fitted to window

It doesn’t take long to clean your roller blinds and get them looking as good as new. If you’ve purchased PVC or easy wipe roller blinds, you’re in luck – your blinds will be even more simple to clean, thanks to their water resistant and wipe-clean properties.

Keep on top of your rollers by wiping them with a clean, damp cloth. Roll all the way down and wipe from top to bottom. Allow your roller blind to dry before raising it again. You should aim to do this a couple of times a month, incorporating it into your wider cleaning routine.

Your roller blinds can be cleaned with baby wipes, as long as you rub gently so as not to remove any coating.

Clean plastic roller blind chain or cord with warm soapy water. Do not clean steel or brass chains this way, as they will become rusty over time. This is a good opportunity to check that your safety device is in place and working correctly. If not, it’s time to invest in a new chain or cord tidy, which will ensure your window treatment is child-safe. You can also clean the roller blind mechanism with a simple silicone spray, which will banish dirt as well as preventing squeaking and stiffness. Be careful when you spray and avoid contacting the actual roller blind fabric, which may react badly to the spray and could lead to bleaching or discolouration. For more top tips for cleaning roller blinds, you can read our expert guide for how to clean roller blinds.

Top takeaways:

1. Very easy to clean

2. Clean regularly with a damp cloth

3. Use baby wipes

4. Don’t forget to clean the mechanism

How to clean Roman Blinds

example image to show how clean yellow roman blinds look on window

Roman blinds require regular, light cleaning to maintain their look and feel. Because they are constructed from soft fabrics, such as cotton and linen, marks and stains can be more difficult to deal with. However, dust and dirt can be tackled easily. You can do this with a soft brush attachment and low setting on your vacuum cleaner. Open the blind fully and brush from top to bottom, focusing on the edges of the blind, which tend to collect more dust and dirt. You should only vacuum the front of your Roman blind.

Do not use stain remover on your Roman blind as this may affect the colour. You can use baby wipes to remove stains. If your blind is made from silk or faux silk, you should not attempt to clean it in any way.

The soft fabric of Roman blinds is susceptible to aromas around the home, including cooking and cigarette smoke. When the item can’t be washed, you can tackle smells with a shop-bought or homemade odour eliminator. Try sprinkling baking soda over the surface of your blind and leaving it for 24 hours, allowing any moisture to be absorbed. You can then vacuum your blind on a gentle setting.

As with any soft fabric, your cleaning methods should depend on the fabric. All fabric types come with different advice for cleaning, and if you are ever unsure, you should seek advice from a dry cleaner who is well aware of the composition of the fabric. You can also get in touch with our helpful team.

Top takeaways:

1. Take care when cleaning

2. Focus on the edges of the blind

3. Baby wipes should be used on stains

4. Try baking soda for stubborn odours

Cleaning Vertical Blinds

photo of dining room table next to window with grey vertical blinds fitted

Vertical blinds require very little maintenance due to their long, downwards-hanging louvres. This means they are less likely to collect dust, as there’s very little area for it to settle.

Most vertical blinds are constructed from flexible polyester or similar, which makes them easily wipe-clean with a clean, damp cloth.

If you want to undertake a thorough clean and concentrate on each louvre individually, it may be easier to unclip and remove your vertical blinds from the rail.

You should always dry your vertical blinds naturally to maintain their shape, size and colour. If your louvres have been thoroughly saturated in the cleaning process, do not hang them to dry, as this will cause the water to settle at the bottom of the fabric. Instead, lay each louvre down on a clean flat surface and allow them to dry naturally before rehanging.

You should also pay attention to the headrail and connecting chains as they may be more dirty and sticky than you realise. Start by unclipping the louvres from the brackets, then wiping under the rail with a damp cloth. Use a silicone spray on the mechanism and any chains. Allow these areas to dry, then clip your louvres back into place. You could also use baby wipes for this. You can read our ‘How to clean vertical blinds’ guide for more top tips.

Top takeaways:

1. Very easy to clean

2. Always work from top to bottom

3. Always dry naturally

4. Try baby wipes

5. Don’t forget the headrail

How to clean Day and Night Blinds

an image to show conservatory with clean day and night blinds

Day and Night blinds are constructed from one continuous sheet of fabric. You can ensure the full surface is cleaned by completing a full rotation.

When you undertake frequent cleaning, use a feather duster or soft cloth to remove particles. Try to focus on the edges of the blind, which may collect more dust and dirt due to their contact with the window frame and windowsill.

If you own a steam cleaner, you could also try this on a low to medium setting. The steam will lift off lingering stains as well as banishing any potential mould and mildew.

You should never use your vacuum cleaner on Day and Night blinds, as the suction can fray and damage the fabric

When using chemical cleaning products, you must ensure that the area of the blind you are treating doesn’t become bleached or discoloured. And of course, bear in mind that deep cleaning specific areas may leave the rest of the blind looking grubby.

Top takeaways:

1. Be light handed when cleaning

2. Focus on the edges of the blind

3. Complete a full rotation

4. Never use your vacuum cleaner

How to clean Venetian Blinds

photo of bedroom with bed next to window that has grey venetian blinds fitted

Your aluminium or faux wood Venetian blinds will require regular cleaning to avoid dust collecting. This is due to their horizontal arrangement and metal slats, which tend to attract dust and dirt.

Place your blinds in the closed position and go over with a soft duster, wiping from the middle outwards. Now, open and close in the opposite direction, and repeat the process. If your aluminium blinds have sticky stains or grease, try a mild detergent like washing up liquid. Use a damp cloth to gently buff the mark and then pat the affected slats dry with kitchen roll. You can also use baby wipes for sticky marks and grease.

For a really thorough clean, remove your blind from the headrail and lay it down on a protective surface, like a towel or an old blanket. If the weather is nice, you can do this outside.

Fill a bowl or bucket with warm water and add a small amount of  detergent. Use a soft sponge to wipe down each slat, then rinse with clean, cold water. Allow your blinds to dry naturally. If it’s not warm or sunny enough, you could use a hairdryer on the coolest setting.

Remember, you must treat your blinds differently if they are wooden Venetian blinds. This is because wood reacts very differently to metal when put into contact with liquid or chemicals. While your aluminium or faux wooden blinds can be cleaned using the above methods, you should look at our guide for cleaning wooden blinds when tackling your real wood Venetians.

Top takeaways:

1. Very easy to clean

2. Clean regularly with a damp cloth

3. Pat dry with kitchen roll

4. Remove your blinds for thorough cleaning

5. Try a hairdryer for quick results

How to clean Shutter blinds

example image to show clean shutter blinds in room

Since shutters are a considerable investment for your home, it’s even more important to clean and maintain them carefully. As with wooden blinds, wooden shutters should not be exposed to excessive moisture, which risks swelling, warping and breakage. Faux wooden shutters are slightly easier to maintain.

No matter the material, you can keep your shutter blinds dust-free by cleaning with a dry cloth or feather duster. For quick results, close all the slats and wipe them with several large strokes. For a more thorough cleaning job, open the slats and wipe them individually, working from the middle outwards. Turn them into the opposite position and wipe again, ensuring you access all areas of the slats.

You can also use a gentle setting and soft brush attachment on your vacuum cleaner to clean the slats. Don’t forget about the frame, which may be collecting dirt and dust. Never use your vacuum cleaner without the correct attachment, as this may scratch the wood.

To remove stubborn stains and marks, use a damp cloth, taking care not to rub too hard. You may also use a mild detergent if necessary. Remember to wipe away excess moisture with a dry cloth to avoid absorption, especially with real wood slats.

Top takeaways:

1. Take care when cleaning

2. Avoid excess moisture with real wood

3. Use a dry cloth or feather dust

4. Don’t forget about the frame

5. Use a mild detergent where necessary

How to clean Curtains

a photo of blue sofa in front of large window with curtains

Try to vacuum your curtains regularly to keep dust and dirt at bay. Remember to use a low setting and a soft attachment to avoid damaging the fibres.

Some curtains can be washed in the washing machine on a cool, slow spin setting. But you should never put your curtains in the tumble dryer, which may cause shrinkage.

Before washing, take your curtains down and remove any hardware. Shake off dust outside and then place in the washing machine, washing only one or two panels at a time depending on the width of the fabric. Hang your curtains to dry naturally if possible.

Curtains made from delicate materials should never be machine washed; instead, hand wash to reduce the risk of shrinking or damaging the fibres. If your curtains are too heavy to put in the washing machine, consider investing in a steam cleaner. When using steam, work from top to bottom, holding the appliance far enough away so that the fabric doesn’t become saturated. Keep in mind that you should never steam silk curtains.

Because of their soft material, curtains are more likely to absorb aromas, which can be very difficult to tackle. Try to shut doors when you are cooking to avoid this.

Top takeaways:

1. Very easy to clean

2. Clean regularly with a damp cloth

3. Use baby wipes for stains and avoid stain remover

4. Don’t forget to clean the mechanism

We hope you found our guide on how to clean blinds useful. Are you looking to replace your current window dressings? Discover the full collection of blinds, curtains and interior products at Blinds Direct. For more information, get in touch with our friendly and helpful team.

Share this post

Other posts you may be interested in

Interior Goods Direct trading as Blinds Direct suppliers of high quality home and commercial interior products. Interior Goods Direct Limited is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.
Place of registration: UK, Registration number: 04966706, VAT Registration Number 817 3168 28, Registered office: Building 2, Colne Bridge Road, Colne Bridge, Huddersfield, West Yorkshire, HD5 0RH