How To Clean Greasy Venetian Blinds

I love my Venetian blinds. We have them on most of the windows in our house. As lovely as they are, they are a bit of a nightmare to keep clean! Over time I’ve found that as long as you can keep on top of cleaning them, the job isn’t so bad at all.

The dirtiest blinds in our house are the ones that hang in the kitchen. They get regularly splashed with washing up water and they get greasy too!

I find the easiest way to tackle grease on a wooden Venetian blind is to use a damp microfiber cloth. For plastic and metal blinds take them down and spray them with a cleaning spray and then rinse using the spray attachment of your hose pipe. If your blinds are small enough, soak them in the bathtub.

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How Kim and Aggie suggest you clean Venetian blinds

I am lucky enough to own Kim and Aggie’s book – ‘How Clean Is Your House?’. I used to enjoy watching their programs, especially when the houses were really dirty!

Kim and Aggie suggest that you use a cotton house glove to clean your Venetian blind. Put on the glove and then run your fingers across each slat. This is a great idea. But, I suspect that if they had written the book more recently (it is nearly twenty years old!) they might well have suggested using a microfiber cloth instead. However, microfiber cloths weren’t popular at that time, they might not have even been invented!

Kim and Aggie - How clean is your house book
Kim and Aggie – How clean is your house book

First – decide on the best method for cleaning your Venetian blind

Before you start it is worth knowing what you can and can’t do when cleaning your Venetian blind.

Here’s a handy table to help you decide on the best way to clean your type of Venetian blind:

Venetian Blind MaterialHow to clean the blind
WoodClean in place with a damp microfiber cloth.
AluminiumClean in place, in a bathtub, or outside. Don’t use soda crystals for cleaning.
PlasticClean in place, in a bathtub or outside.
How to clean greasy Venetian blinds

Here are some quick links to help you jump to the right section of this post:

How to clean your greasy plastic or metal Venetian blinds outside

Cleaning your Venetian blind outside is best if you have non-wooden blinds. You can get a good deep clean without having to stand on a chair and wipe every slat in turn.

This method is super-easier because you don’t have to do any actual scrubbing unless your blind is very dirty. Simply spray and rinse.

Step 1 – Unclip your blind from the window

It depends on how your Venetian blind is fixed to the window but usually, there is a catch on the bracket at each end (and in the middle for larger blinds) so that the blind can be removed easily.

Make sure you get someone to help. Larger blinds can be difficult for one person to remove.

Step 2 – Lay out your blind on the ground or hook it up vertically

If you are going to clean your blind on the ground outside you might prefer to place it on an old sheet to protect it.

If you can hang your blind vertically, tilt the slats down but slightly open so that the cleaning solution can get to all parts of the slat and can drip downwards.

Step 3 – Spray with a cleaner

Spray all the slats of your blind with a cleaning solution. For this, you can use liquid soda crystals (if your blind is not aluminium) or a spray bottle of diluted dish soap.

Start at the top and work your way down.

This lady does a great job cleaning a blind using Krud Kutter. I haven’t tried that particular cleaner as we don’t have it here in the UK. A similar cleaner would be Mr Muscle or Cillit Bang.

YouTube video

Step 4 – Rinse with water

Take a hose with a spray attachment and spray the whole blind from top to bottom.

Step 4 – Let the blind dry

Allow the blind to dry naturally and then put it back on your window.

How to clean greasy wooden metal or plastic Venetian blinds without taking them down

In my house, it’s the kitchen blinds that gets the most greasy. I prefer not to take them down to clean because it just seems easier and less hassle to clean them in place.

The combination of dust and grease can be difficult to remove when you don’t want to take them down.

This two-step approach makes it easy:

Step 1 Dust

The first step is to remove as much of the surface dirt as possible and you can do that very effectively with a dry microfiber cloth.

I find that using a wet cloth at this stage tends to just push the dirt around. Dry microfiber cloths can attract dust making the job much easier. You can also use a dryer sheet for this or a Swiffer mop pad.

Tilt the blind to a horizontal position and then wipe each slat in turn. If you have a very wide blind I find it easier to do one side first and then move to the other side.

Begin at the top and work your way down to the bottom. You might need a chair to get to the slats at the top.

If you have dust on both sides of the blind, tilt the slats the opposite way and repeat on the other side.

Cleaning a greasy Venetian blind with a microfiber cloth
Cleaning a greasy Venetian blind with a microfiber cloth

Step 2 Degrease

Now take a new microfiber cloth and get it damp. You don’t want it dripping wet because too much water will damage the wood.

When wet, microfiber cloths do a great job of soaking up and holding onto grease and dirt.

Wipe over each slat in turn starting from the top. You can usually tell by friction when the slat is free of dirt. The cloth should glide across the wood when it’s clean.

If your blind has tapes along the width I find I can gently push them aside when I’m cleaning the bit of the blind that they cover up. You can also dust the tapes separately with a dry cloth.

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How to clean greasy metal or plastic Venetian blinds in the bathtub

a bathtub

Cleaning your blinds in the bathtub is a quick hands-off way to degrease them.

The best cleaner for dissolving grease are washing soda crystals. However, you shouldn’t use washing soda crystals if your blinds are made of aluminium because it will discolor the metal. For aluminium use dish soap instead.

This method works great if your blinds are made of metal or plastic. Don’t use this method if your blinds are made of wood. You shouldn’t get wooden blinds wet as it will warp the slats and your blinds will be ruined. For wooden blinds, your best option is to clean them while they are hanging up.

If your Venetian blinds are very dirty and the grease has even become sticky you will need something stronger to soak your Venetian blinds in. For this, a dishwasher tablet or a couple of tablespoons of biological washing powder added to the bathwater will help to lift the dirt without needing to scrub. You might need to wipe the slats individually to deal with stubborn dirt.

Here are the steps for cleaning your Venetian blinds in the bathtub:

  1. Take down your blind.
  2. Lay a towel or sheet in the bottom of the bath to protect it from scratching.
  3. Fill a bathtub with warm water and washing soda crystals (or washing-up liquid if your blind is made from aluminium).
  4. Add your blind and allow to soak for 30 minutes or until the dirt lifts from the slats.
  5. Rinse with clean water.
  6. Dry with a towel or microfiber cloth or hang outside to dry naturally.

How to clean greasy vertical blinds

Vertical blinds are much easier to care for because the dust is less likely to settle on them.

If your blinds are wipe-clean, you can take a damp cloth and wipe each slat.

For a deeper clean, remove each slat from its rail and wash them in your bath. If they don’t fit in the bath take that outside and lay them out on a clean sheet. You can then tackle the stained areas with some dish soap.

Allow to dry and then rehang.

Three tips for keeping your Venetian blinds clean

1. Pick an anti-static cleaning cloth

You have a few choices for anti-static cleaning cloths. My favourite is a microfiber cloth because you can wash and reuse it. If you prefer something you don’t have to bother washing go for a dryer sheet or my favourite alternative, a Swiffer cloth.

Microfiber cloths

You don’t have to go for fancy expensive cloths. These basic ones work brilliantly.

Swiffer Dry Sweeping Cloths

Swiffer floor cloths aren’t just for your floor. Everything has a second use! These cloths attract dust like a magnet which makes them perfect for dusting your blinds.

I’ve not tried this, but I’m told that you can reuse these cloths a few times. Put them in your washer and reuse them until they start to fall apart.

Dryer sheets

A dryer sheet can also be used to dust your blinds because they too attract dust and dirt brilliantly.

2. Keep to a regular cleaning schedule

I know you don’t need me to tell you that the more frequently you clean your blinds the easier it will be!

Here are four tips that I find helpful:

  1. Keep your cleaning cloth close to hand. I find that popping a cloth in the corner of the window that I can just grab means I find myself skimming over the blind almost by accident. Or you could use Kim and Aggie’s trick of using a cotton glove.
  2. Clean from the top down. Always start from the top slat so that any falling dust is cleaned up as you work your way down.
  3. Set a timer. Tell yourself you will spend 10 minutes max cleaning your blind. That way it is easier to get motivated when you know you aren’t committing a lot of time to the task.
  4. Delegate! Get your family members used to helping out. Anyone tall enough or able enough to stand on a chair can clean a blind :).

3. Keep your blind pulled up

If you don’t need the blind closed then keep it pulled up. It will stop dust from collecting between the slats.

This article and its contents are owned by sparklingpenny.com and was first published on 1 December 2021.
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Penny | SparklingPenny

Hi, I'm Penny. A busy mum of two boys and one dog, with the aim to enjoy life to the full.