Technical: Care & Cleaning of Glass


The following information is provided as a general guide.
Specific advice should always be sought from a glazier or window cleaner before cleaning takes place.


  • It is recommended that glass be protected from contamination caused by building materials.
  • Construction dust and rusting from steel can contribute to the formation of mild chemicals, which may stain or damage glass.
  • Glass installed adjacent to concrete (e.g. concrete floor slabs) requires extra care and cleaning due to the abrasive nature of concrete dust.
  • Extra care should be exercised where high performance reflective glass and low E coated glass is installed. The coated surface on some products can be susceptible to stains and scratches.
  • Welding, sandblasting and floor sanding can be potentially damaging practices if conducted near glass.
  • Tradesmen should be advised to avoid damaging glass and windows and to leave in place any protective materials.
  • Materials protecting glass should not be in direct contact with the glass to avoid the possibility of staining.
  • Some tapes or adhesives can stain or damage glass surfaces. Avoid using such materials unless they can be removed easily.


  • Glass should be cleaned using only cleaning materials which are free of grit and debris.
  • Use only detergents and cleaning solutions which are recommended for cleaning glass. Mild detergents are preferable.
  • It is recommended that some jewellery and watches be removed while cleaning. Gloves should be worn during the cleaning process.
  • Do not allow cleaning solutions to contact the edges of laminated glass, insulating glass units or mirrors.


  • Mirrors require special cleaning care. To clean mirrors, wipe the surface with methylated spirits on a damp cloth. Polish dry with a lint free cloth. When cleaning, avoid any moisture contact with the mirror edge and backing. Ensure cleaning cloths are free of any abrasives.
  • Abrasive cleaners, powder based cleaners, scouring pads or other harsh materials should not be used to clean mirrors, windows or any other glass products.


The cleaning of toughened glass requires special care.

  • Due to the manufacturing process, toughened glass may have “pick up” on the opposite surface to that with the standards compliance stamp. Very small particles of glass fuse to the surface during the toughening process. This is referred to as “pick up.”
  • Sharp blades and scrapers should be avoided as they can dislodge any “pick up” and result in scratching. A soft cloth which will not dislodge “pick up” should be used.
  • It is suggested that cleaners consult with their suppliers as to the suitability of available cleaning equipment, materials and methods.


  • Paint spots have traditionally been removed using a razor blade. The use of a blade in some cases can cause damage to the glass. If a blade or scraper is used then the risk of damage can be reduced by using a scraper which has a clean edge and is held at an angle of 30 degrees to the glass.
  • An alternative may be solvents or graffiti removal materials. However, surface coated or tinted glass requires special care.
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