If you’ve ever seen My Big Fat Greek Wedding (and you should because it’s hilarious), you know that Gus believes that Windex cures everything that ails you and tells everyone to ‘put Windex on it’. While Windex is extremely caustic and should NEVER be ingested or applied directly to the skin, there are a myriad of other uses for Windex than simply cleaning your windows and mirrors.
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What ingredients are in Windex?
According to SC Johnson, the following ingredients are in the original formula Windex:
- Ethanol, 2-(hexyloxy) (cleaning agent)
- Isopropanolamine (cleaning agent)
- Ammonium hydroxide (cleaning agent)
- Sodium C10-16 Alkylbenzenesulfonate (wetting agent)
- Sodium xylene sulfonate (wetting agent)
- Lauramine oxide (wetting agent)
- C9-11 Pareth-6 (fragrance)
- Liquitint Sky Blue (colorant)
Is Windex Antibacterial? Does it kill germs or disinfect?
The Original Windex formula contains ammonia and alcohol, but makes no antibacterial claims. If you want to kill germs or disinfect your surfaces, Windex also offers a disinfectant multi-purpose cleaner that kills germs, viruses, and bacteria on hard, non-porous surfaces
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What can Windex be used for?
We all know that Windex does an amazing job leaving windows and mirrors clean and streak free, but there are so many other multi-purpose uses for Windex that will blow your mind!
Uses for Windex in the kitchen
Windex is an extremely effective degreaser. Use it on your range hood and fan, stovetop, and light fixtures. It’s also great for removing greasy messes from pots and pans and from stove burners. Simply spray, let sit for 5-10 minutes and wipe off.
It can also be useful for removing grease from kitchen cabinets. Test on a small out-of-sight area first to ensure it won’t remove the finish. Once you’ve confirmed it’s safe, spray the cabinet door, let sit for 5-10 minutes and wipe off all that grease.
NOTE: If you use Windex on any surface that is used for food preparation, make sure to wash the items with soapy water and rinse before using.
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Windex is a great cleaner for clean and shiny enamel and stainless steel appliances. Spray and wipe off with a soft cloth for clean, shiny, streak-free appliances.
Windex is an effective cleaner for any countertop. It’s also great for removing transferred ink stains from plastic bags. Simply spray and wipe with a soft cloth. If the surface is particularly dirty, let the solution sit for a few minutes before wiping. As noted above, wash any food preparation surfaces with soapy water and rinse before placing food directly on countertops.
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Shine your sink and faucets
Clean your sink and faucet with soap and water and dry with a clean cloth. Then spray the sink and faucet with Windex and wipe them dry for a like-new shiny, streak-free stainless steel sink and faucet.
Kill and repel crawling bugs
Are you having issues with ants or other creepy crawly critters? Spray them with Windex and they will be dead within minutes due to the alcohol and ammonia in the Windex solution. You can also spray around windows and door entrances to deter them as they don’t like ammonia.
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Uses for Windex in the Bathroom
Spray Windex on the tile walls. Let it sit for 10 minutes and use a sponge to scrub off scum and grime. Rinse the tiles with clean water and use a squeegee to dry them.
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Use Windex as any other multi-purpose cleaner for cleaning your toilet surfaces. It’s especially effective on the outside of the toilet to clean splashes. Simply spray and wipe down. For toilet bowls, spray a little Windex into your toilet bowl, let it sit for 5 minutes, and scrub as you would with any other toilet bowl cleaner.
You can use Windex to clean your bathtubs. Simply spray the tub down with the Windex, let sit for a few minutes (depending on how dirty it is), and wipe off with a soft cloth or sponge. Make sure to rinse the tub when you’re done.
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Other uses for Windex around your home
If you have tile or vinyl floors, Windex is the best way to remove filmy built up residue and get them shiny and clean. Dilute a cup of Windex into a gallon of warm water and use your floor cleaning tool of choice. Don’t forget to rinse once the floors have been cleaned.
For laminate or sealed hardwood floors, spray Windex directly onto a microfibre mop and work in small sections, reapplying Windex to the mop as required. For spot cleaning, use a soft sponge or some paper towel. Never spray Windex directly on laminate or hardwood floors.
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I’ve recently found that Windex is an excellent product to remove residue and bits of clear tape on walls. Just remove the tape, soak a cloth with Windex and wipe it on the residue with a little pressure. The residue and any remaining bits should come right off!
Remove stains from microfiber or vinyl upholstery
When using Windex to remove stains, we recommend using the clear Windex solution as the original blue solution may turn your upholstery blue.
To remove stains on microfiber upholstery, spray the surface lightly – don’t soak – then brush very gently with a soft-bristled scrub brush, working in one direction, and let dry. Tough stains might require a second application.
To remove stains on vinyl upholstery, spray the surface and wipe off with a soft cloth. Rinse with water, then dry.
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Remove stains from clothing
Once again, we recommend using the clear Windex solution as the original blue solution may dye your clothing blue.
To remove most clothing stains, generously spray the stain with the Windex and let sit on the fabric for 10 minutes. Wash as usual.
Remove stains from carpets
Blot as much of the spill from the carpet as you can with a clean towel. Spray a generous amount of clear Windex solution on the stain and let it sit for 15-20 minutes to bring dirt to the surface. Brush vigorously with a stiff brush and blot the area again with another clean cloth. Repeat this process until the stain is removed.
If you have patent leather shoes or sneakers, a few sprays of Windex can bring them back to looking like new. Wipe with a soft rag after spraying.
Whether you have resin, plastic, glass or aluminum outdoor furniture, Windex will get it clean and fresh. Lightly mist the surface, let sit for 5 minutes and wipe with a clean cloth. It may also keep bugs away from your patio furniture as a bonus.
If you have pure silver or gold jewelry (not plated) that’s looking a bit tarnished, a 30 second Windex bath will make it look new again. Use a soft brush to get into and clean every nook and cranny.
Unstick a zipper
If you have a zipper that has jammed, you can spray some Windex on it to act as a lubricant. Spray it on and slowly move the zipper both ways until it moves smoothly again.
Remove permanent marker
If you or your kids have used permanent markers somewhere you shouldn’t have, just spray with Windex and it should come right off with a cloth.
If you have a whiteboard that has marker residue, Windex will remove it. Spray the surface of the whiteboard and wipe with a soft cloth.
Use Windex in your car
While you can use good old soap and water to clean the outside of your car, using Windex on the inside is more practical. Spray it on your interior windows, dashboard, cupholders and the steering wheel, let it sit for a few minutes, and wipe with a clean cloth.
You can also use it on vinyl and cloth upholstery in your car. Spray a generous amount of Windex on the upholstery and let it sit for 15 minutes. Brush with a stiff brush and blot the area with a clean cloth.
It’s great for removing dead bugs and tree sap on headlights and windows. Spray it on, let it sit and do it’s work for 5 minutes, then wipe off with a soft cloth. Be careful to use it sparingly on your exterior windows as it can break down tinting.
What should you not use Windex on?
Anything with bleach
The ammonia in Windex, if mixed with bleach, can release toxic chloramine gas and cause serious lung damage, and even death.
The alcohol in Windex will erode the top coat on leather.
The ammonia in the Windex can eat into the surface of acrylic and leave it looking cloudy.
The ammonia in Windex can wear down treatments that were applied to the glass and damage the surrounding metal, eating through the metal’s finish over time.
Flat screen TVs or computer screens
Alcohol and ammonia, found in Windex, can damage your flat-screen TV or computer screen.
Granite, marble or other natural stone countertops or floors
Windex can etch or dull the surfaces of natural stone and eat away the protective seal.
6 thoughts on “19 mind-blowing uses for Windex (and 6 things you shouldn’t use it for)”
Windex will remove that “too small” ring you stuck on your finger! No need to call 911 who’ll send the Fire Dept or go to the Jewels to cut it off -the ring, that is. Soak-spray some Windex on said digital, twist the ring & it slides right off! Even if you’ve yanked on it so hard, you increased the swelling. Windex will still get the ring off.
Thanks for the very helpful tip, Elise. I will definitely keep it in mind if I’m ever in that predicament! I hope it helps someone else reading as well.
Winded will also remove gum out of clothes and your dryer. Just spray and rub with a cloth or brush.
Thank you for the tip!
I thought I would try it in a power washer to clean a cement patio???
I think I’d use Dawn instead for it’s grease cutting abilities.