Tips for Cleaning Your Windshield and Glass

Having a clean windshield is critical to the safe operation of any car, truck, or SUV. Our windshields take quite a beating, whether due to excessive bugs, bird droppings, or dirt, or a build-up of ‘muck’ on the inside. Regardless of the source, keeping the windshield clean has been proven to improve visibility, and reduce the potential of accidents – especially when driving at night.

To ensure you can easily clean your windshield at home or on the road, here are some tips for cleaning your windshield that will leave them streak-free.

Tips for Cleaning Your Windshield and Glass

1. Be Aware of When You Clean the Windshield

There are certain conditions you want to avoid when cleaning your windshield. Obviously you’re not going to have much success if you attempt to clean the outside of the windshield while it’s raining or snowing outside. However, cleaning a hot windshield is also going to create additional problems.

Direct sunlight or a hot windshield will cause the windshield washer fluid or cleaner to evaporate when it’s applied. This not only creates streaking issues and reduces the impact of the cleaner, but it can also create harmful vapors that can be damaging if inhaled. Always clean a windshield in a garage or in shade to avoid these problems.

2. Choose the Right Supplies

The first item to choose is the windshield auto glass cleaner. A general rule of thumb is to avoid using products that contains ammonia, alcohol or any ingredients that produce toxic fumes. Glass cleaners come in aerosol cans and spray bottles, and several great auto glass cleaners come in a wipe.

You will also need is the right towels or rags to clean the windshield. Back in the “old days” using a newspaper was the best item for effectively cleaning a windshield, but times and technology have changed quite a bit. The best products to use now are microfiber towels.

When you buy microfiber towels, make sure you have (4) to use. Two for the inside glass and two for the outside glass. The first towel will be used to remove liquid residue from the auto glass cleaner, the second is used to remove excessive ‘fog’ or residual. This step will be addressed below.

3. Start on the Outside

Start by cleaning the outside of the windshield. Spray or apply auto glass cleaner on a small section. If you’re using a spray, follow the directions to determine how long to leave the product on the windshield. Once the product has soaked in (this doesn’t take long, just a second or two), use the first microfiber towel to remove the liquid.

When all liquid has been removed, used the second, clean microfiber towel to “buff” the windshield. This is best done in a circular motion, to remove the haze that builds-up. Continue these steps until the entire windshield is clean.

4. Continue with the Inside

For the inside of the windshield, the steps are identical. It might be more difficult to reach certain areas, so clean the inside in three-sections if needed. The Invisible Glass triangle brush is great for helping to clean hard-to-reach corners of the inside of the windshield.

Using the right auto glass cleaner and microfiber towels – in the right location, and with the right steps will produce a clean windshield. If you’re looking for an easy to use auto glass cleaner, or other automotive detailing supplies, AutoZone offers a slew of high-quality and safe to use products.

Order online or visit one of our AutoZone locations to find the best auto glass cleaning supplies that will keep your windshield clean, and improve your visibility as you drive.

Advice, how-to guides, and car care information featured on and AutoZone Advice & How-To’s are presented as helpful resources for general maintenance and automotive repairs from a general perspective only and should be used at your own risk. Information is accurate and true to the best of AutoZone’s knowledge, however, there may be omissions, errors or mistakes.

Be sure to consult your owner’s manual, a repair guide, an AutoZoner at a store near you, or a licensed, professional mechanic for vehicle-specific repair information. Refer to the service manual for specific diagnostic, repair and tool information for your particular vehicle. Always chock your wheels prior to lifting a vehicle. Always disconnect the negative battery cable before servicing an electrical application on the vehicle to protect its electrical circuits in the event that a wire is accidentally pierced or grounded. Use caution when working with automotive batteries. Sulfuric acid is caustic and can burn clothing and skin or cause blindness. Always wear gloves and safety glasses and other personal protection equipment, and work in a well-ventilated area. Should electrolyte get on your body or clothing, neutralize it immediately with a solution of baking soda and water. Do not wear ties or loose clothing when working on your vehicle.

FREE Loan-A-Tool® program requires returnable deposit. Please note that the tool that you receive after placing an online order may be in a used but operable condition due to the nature of the Loan-A-Tool® program.

Related Posts