Expert reveals the hidden spot you need to clean before warm weather arrives

Professionals explain why cleaning window tracks needs to be at the top of your spring cleaning chores

white open plan living space with dining table and lounge area beyond with large windows
(Image credit: Future | David Merewether)

You may think you know every nook and cranny in your home that needs a thorough cleaning but experts have revealed that there is one rather common hidden place that you may have missed in your deep cleaning routine - and that spot is window tracks.

Even when armed with the most effective spring cleaning tips, it's a challenge to guarantee that you've hit every spot in your house that needs it. And when you've mastered how to deep clean your home, you can still be unsure of exactly what cleaning window tracks entails. 

So whilst you know your home much better than anyone else does, there is a commonly neglected spot that you might be yet to add to your spring cleaning checklist

The importance of cleaning window Tracks

Whether you know how to clean windows or not, knowing how best to clean the window tracks is perhaps a less common task to be aware of. So whilst your windows may be streak-free and shining, the hidden tracks might need your attention. It won't be long until the weather allows for open windows, and no one wants to have to look at grime-filled tracks all summer. 

"If left for too long, dirty window tracks can become a real problem. Not only do they make your house look seriously unclean when your windows are open, but they also damage your window over time and can make it harder to open and close," says John Cutts, glass expert from MeandMyGlass

You may have already started experiencing your windows sticking and wondered what could be the cause, the answer may well be the built-up dirt in the tracks. John explains that dirty window tracks can also be a magnet for dust and allergens which when blown into your room can cause discomfort. 

"Window tracks are an awkward space and they don’t look easy to clean so it’s understandable why people avoid cleaning them. They only need to be cleaned once every four to six months and we’ve shared some of the easiest ways to do this,” explains John. 

How to clean window tracks

So with this in mind, what's the best way to clean your window tracks and keep them from jamming your windows? Luckily John has a simple yet effective method, expert cleaning hacks included, for keeping those window tracks squeaky clean and allergen-free. 

Here's what you'll need:

  • Vacuum cleaner 
  • Old toothbrush
  • White vinegar
  • Baking soda
  • Microfibre cloth
  • Cotton swabs

1. Get rid of loose dust

white PVC windows

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Before any heavy-duty cleaning can take place you'll need to remove the bulky bits of dust and debris. When it comes to how to get rid of dust in your home, keeping on top of these smaller areas can make a huge difference as well as of course the bigger surface areas in your home. 

John says, "Start by getting rid of any loose dust and dirt with a vacuum attachment and you’ll already save yourself some time. Removing loose dirt will allow you to see just how much dirt has built up in the tracks and how much it needs scrubbing."

2. Scrub with a toothbrush

Now the bulk of the dirt has been removed, it's time to get into the cracks and crevices of your window tracks. And whilst getting to work with a toothbrush is not a method for how to clean your room fast, it will ensure less elbow grease the next time you do it. 

Jack recommends using an old toothbrush as it's small enough to reach all of the areas and abrasive enough to scrub away the dirt. If your windows aren't too bad, then using some warm soapy water should lift all the grime away with ease. 

3. Make a cleaning solution

picture of white vinegar and baking soda

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Are your windows looking a little worse for wear still? With this part of your home being so hidden away from sight, the chances are it's quite dirty and needs something a little more heavy-duty than cleaning with baking soda is the next step. 

"For dirty window tracks sprinkle some baking soda onto the area and add a small amount of vinegar to the powder. Let the solution bubble and sit for around 15 minutes before scrubbing the area. You can then take a damp cloth and wipe the area clean," suggests John.

Cleaning with vinegar and baking soda is an extremely popular method as they not only can remove stubborn dirt or stains but they also are naturally anti-bacterial. 

4. Tackle the corners

Even if you're not looking to clean your house like a professional, grabbing some cotton swabs to clean out the tight corners of your window tracks will make a huge difference. Not only to the aesthetics of your windows but to their longevity too. 

So whether you're more concerned about keeping your room allergen-free or perhaps just can't stand the thought of a place in your home being that dirty, you now know how to deal with it! As mentioned, this particular task should be done every four to six months, that way your windows will open seamlessly and they'll be sparkling clean. 

Emily Smith
Digital lifestyle writer

Emily joined woman&home as a staff writer after finishing her MA in Magazine Journalism from City University in 2023. After writing various health and news content, she now specialises in lifestyle and home writing where she covers all things cleaning, interiors and homeowning.