How to Clean Window Tracks: Tips and Tricks From the Pros

Find out how to clean window tracks the easy way, using items you already have at home. Plus bonus tips for cleaning tough-to-reach corners.

Cleaning window tracks may not be the most glamorous chore, but having tackled this task more times than we care to admit, we can tell you it's a necessary one.

Let's face it, dirt, dust, and debris can build up in window tracks in what feels like the blink of an eye, making them difficult to open and close, and downright unsightly. However, with a little elbow grease and some helpful tips and tricks, you can get those window tracks looking and functioning like new in no time.

In this short-and-sweet guide, we share how to clean window tracks the easy way, using items you already have at home. As a bonus, we included tips, tricks and hacks for cleaning tough-to-reach corners, removing mold from window tracks, and more.


How to clean window tracks with baking soda and vinegar

Among the cleaners on Homeaglow, baking soda and vinegar is a favorite method for cleaning window tracks. It’s nontoxic, easy, and effective.

What you’ll need

  • Baking soda
  • Vinegar
  • Water
  • A small bowl or container
  • A toothbrush or small cleaning brush
  • A vacuum with an attachment for crevices

Steps to clean

Here's how to clean your window tracks with baking soda and vinegar.

Step 1: Vacuum the tracks

Start by vacuuming the tracks to remove any loose dirt and debris. Use the crevice attachment on your vacuum to get into tight spaces and corners.

Step 2: Make a baking soda paste

Mix equal parts baking soda and water in a small bowl or container to make a paste. Apply the paste to the tracks, making sure to cover all areas.

Step 3: Pour on vinegar

Pour vinegar over the baking soda paste, causing a chemical reaction that will help loosen dirt and grime. Let the mixture sit for 5-10 minutes.

Step 4: Scour with a toothbrush

Use a toothbrush or small cleaning brush to scrub the tracks, paying special attention to corners and hard-to-reach areas.

Step 5: Wipe clean

Wipe away the mixture with a damp cloth. Repeat the process if necessary until the tracks are clean.

How to clean window tracks with a steam cleaner

A steam cleaner is a great tool for cleaning a variety of surfaces, including window tracks. (It’s also handy for washing curtains.)

What you’ll need

  • A steam cleaner
  • A vacuum with an attachment for crevices

Steps to clean

Here's how to clean your window tracks with a steam cleaner.

Vacuum the tracks

Start by vacuuming the tracks to remove any loose dirt and debris. Use the crevice attachment on your vacuum to get into tight spaces and corners.

Use steamer to penetrate dirt

Fill your steam cleaner with water and turn it on. Hold the nozzle of the steam cleaner close to the tracks, allowing the steam to penetrate the dirt and grime.

Wipe away loose grime

Use a cloth or small cleaning brush to wipe away the dirt and grime as it is loosened by the steam. Repeat the process until the tracks are clean.

3 hacks for cleaning your window tracks

In addition to these two effective cleaning methods, there are a few helpful hacks you can use to make the process even easier. Here are a few ideas to try.

Cut grooves into your sponge

By cutting grooves into a sponge, you can create a custom cleaning tool that's perfect for cleaning window tracks. The grooves help to break up dirt and debris, making it easier to get into hard-to-reach areas.

Cut the sponge

Using the scissors, carefully cut grooves into the sponge. The grooves should be perpendicular to the longest side of the sponge, so that they can easily fit into the window tracks. Make sure the grooves are deep enough to clean out the dirt and debris in the tracks.

Dampen the sponge with solution

Once you've cut the grooves, dampen the sponge with a cleaning solution. You can use a store-bought cleaner or make your own using equal parts of white vinegar and water.

Clean the window track

Use the grooved sponge to clean the window track. Make sure to get into all the nooks and crannies and scrub away any dirt or debris. You may need to use a little extra pressure in order to get the sponge into the grooves of the track.

Use a Q-Tip for the corners

Q-tips are a great tool for getting into small spaces, especially if you have a lot of built-up dirt and debris. Here's how to use Q-tips to clean corners of window tracks.

Dip your Q-tip in your cleaning solution

Dip the Q-tip in the cleaning solution and make sure it's saturated.

Clean the corners

Use the Q-tip to clean the corners of the window tracks, getting into all the nooks and crannies to scrub away dirt and debris. You may need to use several Q-tips to get the job done.

Wipe the area clean

After you've cleaned the corners, use a damp cloth to wipe the area clean and get rid of any remaining dirt.

Dry the area

Use a dry cloth to wipe the area dry. Make sure the area is completely dry to prevent mold and mildew from growing.

Remove mold stains from wood sills with vinegar

When you clean your window tracks, don’t forget to also clean the window sills. If you find you’ve still got mold stains on your wood sills after your initial clean, follow this pro method to remove it.

Mold stains on your window sills are not only unsightly, but they can also pose health risks, especially if left untreated. Mold can cause allergies, respiratory problems, and other health issues, so it's important to remove it as soon as possible.

Wear protective gear

Mold can be harmful if inhaled, so it's important to wear protective gear when cleaning mold. Wear a mask, gloves, and safety goggles to protect yourself.

Mix vinegar solution

Mix equal parts of white vinegar and water in a spray bottle. You can also add a few drops of tea tree oil, which has natural antifungal properties that can help kill mold.

Spray the solution onto the affected areas

Spray the cleaning solution onto the moldy areas of your window sills. Make sure to saturate the affected areas and let the solution sit for 15 minutes.

Scrub the mold away

Use a scrub brush or a toothbrush to scrub the moldy areas. Make sure to scrub vigorously to remove all the mold stains. Rinse the area with water and repeat the process until all the mold is gone.

How to keep your window tracks clean

In addition to these tips, there are a few things you can do to prevent your window tracks from getting dirty in the first place.

  • Prevent buildup by regularly vacuuming tracks and wiping down with a damp cloth
  • Use WD-40 to help your windows slide more smoothly in their tracks
  • Keep sills dry and well-ventilated to prevent mold from coming back
  • Open windows regularly and consider a mold-resistant paint for window sills

Cleaning your window tracks shouldn't be a chore

Cleaning your window tracks may seem like a daunting task, but it doesn't have to be. By using the right tools and techniques, you can easily clean your tracks without removing the window. Baking soda and vinegar are effective for removing dirt and grime, while a steam cleaner can provide a deep clean for tough stains. And with a few helpful hacks, like cutting grooves into your sponge and using Q-tips for the corners, the process can be even easier.

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