window blinds

How to Clean Blinds: The Complete Guide

Cleaning your blinds may seem like a daunting task, especially if you have several sets in your home, but it doesn’t have to be.

With the right tools and a bit of elbow grease, you can easily remove dust and grime, and get your blinds looking like new in no time.

In this guide, we’ll explain how to clean three popular types of blinds, including Venetian, vertical and roller styles.

We’ll also provide tips on the best tools and cleaning products to use. Let’s dive in!


What Tools Can You Use to Clean Blinds?

tools to clean blinds

When it comes to cleaning blinds, there are several different tools you can use.

For light weekly dusting, either a dry microfibre cloth or a Swiffer Duster is perfect. Both tools collect dust much more effectively than standard feather dusters that tend to spread it around.

If you’re cleaning slatted blinds, you’ll need either a damp microfibre cloth or a specialist Venetian Blind Cleaner Tool. This will enable you to clean two slats at once to get the job done faster.

For each of the methods below, you’ll also need a vacuum cleaner with a brush attachment. Both handheld cordless models and vacuum cleaners with long, flexible hoses will work.


How to Clean Venetian Blinds Without Taking Them Down

Venetian blinds, or slatted blinds, have horizontal slats that lie flat when open. They can be adjusted to allow as much or as little light through as possible, and are great for adding privacy to overlooked rooms.

However, they’re also notorious for gathering dust. As such, you should aim to dust your Venetian blinds every week to limit the need for deep cleaning.

With that said, deep cleaning your blinds every month is ideal for removing grease, dead bug residue or mould that has built up on the surface.

cleaning blinds with white vinegar or washing up liquid

The simplest way to do this is as follows:

  1. Start by removing any dust from the front of the blinds using a vacuum cleaner fitted with a brush attachment. Vacuum each slat individually, starting from the top down, then close the blinds and dust the back too.
  2. Once the blinds are free of dust you can move onto the cleaning stage. For faux wood or vinyl Venetian blinds, you can use either a white vinegar and water solution (1 part vinegar, 4 parts water), spritzed onto a clean microfibre cloth. Or add 3 drops of washing up liquid into a bowl of warm water. Either option will help lift the grime. Just avoid using hot water, as this could warp the blinds.
  3. If you’re using the soapy mixture, dip the cloth into the water and wring out well—it should be damp, not wet. Or spray enough white vinegar onto the cloth to moisten it.
  4. Next, reopen the blinds and use the cloth to clean each slat one by one, starting at the top. You’ll likely need a step ladder to do this. Place the cloth around the slat using a pinching motion, then glide it across its full length, working left to right. This will enable you to clean both sides at once.
  5. Rinse the cloth out as you go and re-dampen it with your preferred solution. If there are stubborn marks that are proving difficult to remove, try adding a tablespoon of bicarbonate of soda to the mix and go over the slats again.
  6. Once you’ve finished cleaning the blinds, leave them open to air dry. You can also wipe them down with a clean, damp cloth to soak up any excess moisture.
  7. Finish off by cleaning the blind cord with soap and water, then wiping down the sills to remove any dust or dirt that came off the blinds while cleaning. It’s also a good idea to vacuum the floor underneath the window.

Tip: for real wood blinds, avoid water and stick to dry dusting. If a deeper clean is required, try applying a small amount of furniture polish to the cloth and wiping it along the slat.


What’s the Easiest Way to Clean Vertical Blinds?

clean vertical blinds with cloth and vacuum

While vertical blinds don’t collect dust as easily as horizontal styles, you will still need to dust them down every few weeks.

You should also close the blinds and spot check them for any stuck-on grime while you’re at it.

You can then use a slightly soapy cloth to gently wipe off the marks. Otherwise, you will only need to deep clean your vertical blinds 3-4 times a year.

For vertical blinds with a fabric front and vinyl backing, you’ll need a microfibre cloth and a vacuum cleaner.

Place the dampened cloth against the back of the first slat and place the vacuum cleaner nozzle on the front.

Working downwards, gently clean both sides of the slat together to prevent breakage. Do the same for the remaining slats, until the full set is clean.


How to Clean Roller Blinds and Remove Stains

Roller Blinds

To clean roller blinds, you can either unhook them and lay them flat on a table or wipe them down while they’re hanging up. Here’s how clean them without having to take them down:

  1. Clear the window sill, extend the blind to its full length and vacuum off any dust. Go back over both sides with a dry microfibre cloth to collect any remaining particles.
  2. Next, fill a bucket with warm water, add a teaspoon of washing up liquid and two caps of rubbing alcohol. This will help to remove any non-water-based stains, especially in kitchens where blinds are most prone to a build-up of grease. You can also spot treat stubborn marks with neat white vinegar.
  3. Dip a non-scratch sponge into the solution, squeeze it out so it’s damp rather than wet. Then test patch a small section of the blind to check for fading. If everything looks okay, wipe down the rest of the blind gently to avoid pilling.
  4. Wipe the blind down with a dry towel and leave it unrolled until it is completely dry.

Need more cleaning hacks to keep your window coverings in tip-top condition? From how to clean mould from blinds to ways for cleaning curtains in the washer, learn more on our blog.