Limescale can appear on any kind of surface, provided it has been in contact with hard water. Depending on how long the stains remain, they can become etched into your window panes, your sink taps or even on the inside your kettle. Removing them requires some physical effort, but don’t worry, we’ll show you how to remove limescale from glass and prevent it from appearing again.

Table of Contents:

How do hard water stains form

Hard water has higher concentrations of dissolved mineral salts such as calcium and magnesium. When hard water evaporates, the foggy, off-white chalky residue left on the window panes and shower glass is limescale. If the calcium deposits are not regularly cleaned, they build-up and can eventually become etched in the glass. Permanent limescale marks are almost impossible to wash. Learning how to properly care for your windows is important, because these tips are also helpful in preventing future limescale from forming.

There are various commercial and homemade cleaners available. The Fantastic Team will share some of its eco-friendly methods, so you don’t have to expose yourself to harsh and toxic solvents.

How to clean limescale from glass using homemade solutions

Since hard water mineral deposits are alkaline, the best way to get rid of limescale is to use acid-based detergents. Thus, many natural limescale removers and homemade window cleaner recipes use lemon juice and vinegar. The ratio between the acid components and the rest of the ingredients in the mixture depend on the amount of residue on the glass panes.

Items you will need

  • Spray bottle
  • Gloves
  • Non-abrasive sponge
  • Tape
  • Lint-free cloth
  • Squeegee
  • White distilled vinegar
  • Baking soda
  • Lemon juice
  • Plastic wrap

Step-by-step guide

  1. First, put on some gloves.
  2. Remove any dust build-up and cobwebs.
  3. Wash the dirty windows without using any detergents.
  4. Mix 1 cup of white distilled vinegar with 3 cups of water. If the stains have been on the surface for a long time, you may want to increase the acidity of the mixture by using 2 cups of vinegar in 2 cups of water.
  5. You can directly apply the vinegar on the surface and leave it for 5 minutes, if you think you might need a stronger cleaning solution. But don’t let it dry on the glass pane, otherwise the vinegar will add to the white residue on the windows.
  6. Use a non-abrasive sponge and scrub in all directions. Alternatively, you can use baking soda as a slightly abrasive material. However, wait for a few minutes before you add the baking soda or else both components will immediately react with each other and lose their cleaning properties.
  7. Scrape the accumulated dirt with a squeegee.
  8. Wash the window with the homemade solution again.
  9. Dry with a lint-free cloth.
tip

If you want to mask the vinegar smell, just add a little lemon juice or entirely substitute the vinegar for lemon juice.

tip

If you’ve decided to apply only vinegar onto the glass panes, you can seal off the area with tape and plastic wrap. That way you can keep in the moisture from the homemade cleaner for longer.

tip

If you don’t have baking soda, you can scrub toothpaste with a non-abrasive sponge or a brush with soft bristles. Leave the paste for a few minutes and rinse.

The risks of using commercial cleaners

Commercial detergents are also a good way to clean limescale. However, since they are very acidic and toxic, store-bought solutions require wearing gloves and a protective mask because they can hurt your skin or damage your nose and eyes. Moreover, if those solvents are used on any surface that gets in contact with food, they may incur additional damage to your body.

If you still prefer to use a commercial cleaner, make sure you wear protective gear and try a small amount on an inconspicuous area first.

How to prevent limescale from appearing again

There are a few ways you can prevent hard water stains from forming. The three most common and cost-effective methods are:

  • Regularly cleaning your windows.
  • Attaching a water softener or a filter to your water tap.
  • Using a special wax to coat the window panes or shower glass twice a year.

Hire a professional

Descaling window panes is time-consuming and requires a lot of elbow grease. If you don’t have the time to spare or you think the task is too cumbersome to complete, Fantastic Services offers professional window cleaning services. The experts are fully-trained and use only natural and eco-friendly cleaning methods. They will ensure your windows return their initial shine, while not exposing you or your family to any harsh and harmful solutions.

Learn what window cleaning solutions we offer by visiting our main website.

Learn more

Takeaways

  • Avoid cleaning your window panes in direct sunlight, otherwise, the cleaning solution will dry up before it has had the chance to dissolve the hard water stains.
  • Wash your windows before you start working on the limescale residue. Small dust particles can scratch the window panes if you don’t remove them prior to cleaning the calcium deposits.
  • Scrub the hard water stains in all directions.
  • Do not use abrasive scrubbing tools or materials.
  • Use a small amount of the cleaning solution on an inconspicuous area if using a commercial detergent.

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We hope you found this guide on how to clean limescale from glass and windows helpful. Share your experience in cleaning hard water stains or ask your questions in the comment section below!

Image source: Deposit Photos / vvoennyy

  • Last update: November 13, 2019

Posted in Cleaning Guides, Window Cleaning Tips

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