Contractors continue to innovate and build contemporary structures. These innovations have birthed new ways to provide security to buildings and homes, while at the same time improving their overall aesthetics.
The integration of aluminium windows is one of them and, it is largely popular both for residential and commercial architecture.
Even though they may appear easy to maintain, check out aluminium windows cleaning tips to keep them looking good and operating smoothly.
Aluminium windows are significant because they maximize levels of insulation and are durable.
They also offer versatility to homes and building designs that allow you to incorporate other architectural styles.
You can vary the size, improve the outside view and configure the aluminium windows to suit your preference. This article shares insight on aluminium windows cleaning tips.
What Are The Different Types Of Aluminium Windows & Finishes?
Settling for a type of aluminium windows will depend on your preference, the space you have, and your building or home design. There is a wide array of options you can choose from to suit your needs.
Casement windows, also known as projected windows or sash windows, are fixed to an aluminium frame using hinges placed on the sides. The hinges allow the aluminium windows to assume two forms, side hung, and top hung.
The sashes (opening sections that swing out from the window’s outer frame) of the side hung windows open either to the left or right. Whereas the sashes of the top hung open upwards.
Casement windows are generally suitable for most spaces.
This type of aluminium windows provides control over rain, wind, and ventilation to the desired degree.
They especially work best when installed on the weather-facing side of a building.
Open the windows ajar to allow air circulation or allow in the breeze while keeping out the rain.
Sliding windows include two or more panes that slide to pass each other on the window frame.
The number of sashes depends on the width of the window.
The most common type of sliding windows is horizontal sliders. They are popular in offices and commercial settings where people prefer sliders to casement windows.
Sliding windows fit seamlessly in barely accessible spaces like counters and over sinks. They also blend well with other fixtures like fixed window panes and sliding doors.
Fixed Pane Windows
These types of aluminium windows are not the fanciest. However, they are useful since not all spaces require window openings.
Fixed pane windows are perfect for letting in light and offering stunning views. You can install these windows on spaces that will give you a view of natural surroundings.
You can install large fixed window panes on corridors or use them to separate rooms.
As mentioned earlier, this type of aluminium window can be integrated with other types.
These are also known as folding-sliding windows or folding windows. Stacking windows are made of multiple panes that fold upon one another when opened.
They have similar characteristics to fixed pane windows in that they let it a lot of light and can be paired with other aluminium window designs.
Some stacking windows applications include installing them between rooms such as dining and kitchen and partitioning your living room and garden or outdoor space.
Don’t be shy to come up with your own unique ideas.
Tilt and Turn Windows
These windows can either move horizontally or vertically, depending on your preference. Contrary to most aluminium windows, tilt and turn windows open inwards.
They have a unique design that is suitable for homes with small balconies or limited outside spaces. They are suitable for your bathrooms.
Tilt and turn windows can be left open at an angle during the night for ventilation.
The above aluminium window types have to be complemented by finishes. There are a variety of finishes that you can choose from, including;
- natural (clear) anodised finish
- the powder-coated finish comes in different colours like black satin, pearl white, matt light bronze, light straw, gloss fence green and matt charcoal.
The finishes are not limited to the list above and can also be customized.
How Does Your Aluminium Windows Get Dirty?
Just like any other surface, your aluminium windows will get dirty with dirt, dust, and over time, oxidation that forms unwanted stains.
Why Is It Necessary To Clean Your Aluminium Windows?
Although aluminium windows are easy to maintain and durable, you should clean them regularly.
This is necessary to avoid damage that may be caused by dirt and dust deposits and corrosion of the aluminium.
Cleaning them also helps to avoid the need for repairs. In extreme cases where cleaning and maintenance are ignored, the damage may be irreversible.
How Often Does Your Aluminium Windows Have To Be Cleaned?
The frequency of cleaning your aluminium windows varies and depends on your location, preference, weather conditions, and windows age.
If your property is in a dusty area, then you’d probably need to clean your windows every week. Some offices clean their windows every fortnight or monthly.
Older aluminium windows require frequent cleaning.
Best Aluminium Windows Cleaning Tips
General maintenance tips require that you keep your aluminium windows dry at all times. That is the first step towards proper maintenance.
Next, always conduct regular inspections.
And third, the cleaning method will depend on how old your aluminium windows are, and the finish applied. Old aluminium windows require frequent and rigorous cleaning, while new ones won’t require the same attention.
Use products such as a steam cleaner, silicone lubricant, car wax, and penetrating lubricant. These materials prevent rush and corrosion and protect your windows from grime and other contaminants.
The wheels, hinges, locks, rollers, and springs should also be cleaned and properly maintained to prevent stiffness. Some aluminium windows come with pre-installed snap-in shades that act as insulators.
Lastly, repairs and replacement of your aluminium windows' damaged components are also essential to preserve your home's beautiful look.
TIP: Never use steel brushes or any abrasive and scrubbing pads when cleaning your aluminium windows. High-pressure cleaners or high-pressure spray nozzles should also be avoided.
If you have a powder-coated finish, consider the below tips when cleaning;
- Start cleaning the top while working your way down. The dirt and debris will fall down and you’ll clean as you move downwards. The outside can be cleaned using a hose spray while the inside can be gently cleaned using a soft wet cloth.
- Use soap and warm water to clean the frames. A soft cloth or preferably a microfibre material should be used.
- Use a slight vigorous approach on areas with stubborn dirt and spots. Remember not to exert too much pressure since they are easy to clean.
- Make sure you clean joints, grooves, wheels, and your locking system.
- Once done with cleaning, rinse off excess water and ensure that the hinges and the locking systems are completely dry. You can use a soft dry cloth to wipe or a blower for places that the cloth can’t reach. Drying helps to reduce the risk of damage and oxidation that causes stains.
- Lubricate the rollers, hinges, and joints to allow smooth opening and closing of the windows.
- Finish it off with a polish and enjoy the shine. In cases where polish doesn’t work, you should get a professional cleaner to help with specialized cleaning products.
TIP: Cleaning time presents the best opportunity for inspection.
Frequently Asked Questions
How Do You Protect Powder Coated Aluminium?
While powder coated aluminium is a low maintenance finish, routine maintenance is required to ensure that the windows surface remains in good condition for years to come. To protect your powder-coated aluminium windows, do the following;
- limit exposure to sun, rain, and other harsh elements that cause degradation of the powder coating
- avoid using harsh chemicals when cleaning
- clean gently using soft towel or cloth
- apply wax and
- inspect and maintain it regularly.
How Do You Make Old Aluminium Windows Look New?
Old aluminium windows can be made to look as good as new by a thorough cleaning. Bring back the shine to your aluminium windows by following the cleaning and maintenance tips shared above.
Does White Vinegar Harm Aluminium?
No. White vinegar is used to clean aluminium as it helps to remove dirt and restore its shine.
Aluminium windows offer durability, functionality, and versatility with an exquisite modern touch.
They are available in standard sizes, styles and can also be customized to your specific preferences.
They offer security, improve the overall look of your home or building, and are energy efficient.
All the features are what make aluminium windows popular globally, more so in South Africa.
The guidelines above will help you make the right choice of aluminium windows for your personalized space.