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How to remove hard water stains from glass windows (video)

Dealing with unsightly hard water stains on your exterior windows can be a frustrating and daunting task. These stubborn mineral deposits not only obscure the clarity of your windows but also diminish the overall curb appeal of your home or office. Fortunately, we’ve got you covered with the easiest and most effective solution to restore the sparkle and shine to your windows. In this guide, we’ll walk you through a simple yet powerful method to bid farewell to those pesky hard water stains, leaving your windows crystal clear and looking as good as new. Say goodbye to the hassle and hello to the clarity you deserve! Let’s dive right in and learn how to remove hard water stains from glass windows.

how to remove hard water stains from glass windows
How to remove hard water stains from glass windows.

Anyway, I love the simplicity of this particular deep cleaning method because all you literally have to do is mix two ingredients together in a squirt bottle, spritz the glass, & wipe it down… it really is that easy!

It’s so easy that hopefully you will be just as excited as it makes me about cleaning your windows, or shower door, by the time that you are done reading this tutorial.

I am giving you guys this tutorial in two ways…I did a cheesy little video on it for my Youtube channel…as much as I hate being in front of the camera it seems like video is a necessary evil for success when owning a website these days.

How to use citric acid for cleaning glass

The very first thing you do is get out a new spray bottle, and mix Two Tablespoons of Citric Acid for every one cup of HOT water needed to fill the bottle.

I did a little graphic so that you guys can easily see how much to use when looking at your phone.

Keep in mind that it is much cheaper to buy your citric acid in bulk, this is where I get mine.

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Those two ingredients (citric acid and hot water) are literally all that you need to make the magic happen!

Just make sure to use hot or warm water though because the citric acid needs to dissolve first in order to work properly.

Shake it well, grab some clean rags or some paper towels, and you are all ready to start!

All you need to do is to evenly spritz down the glass, and if you give it a few to about 30 seconds to do its thing, you won’t have to do it as many times.

Then all you do is wipe down.

The easiest way to remove hard water from windows.

The easiest way to remove hard water from windows.

Then you can repeat as many times as necessary. This works so well because the Citric Acid breaks down the mineral deposits…

I think that this method is even more effective than using cleaning vinegar…but that’s just my humble opinion. 

Once you’re done getting all of the hard water off, I like to finish it up with washing the glass once or twice like I normally would.

To get a streak-free shine so I will either use a product like Windex or just use some watered down Vinegar.

Anyway, here is the before and after together…

Anyway, here is the before and after together...
Anyway, here is the before and after together…

Video tutorial found here

Here is the video how-to option. I am a total dork…anyway, hopefully you got the gist between the written portion and the silly video.

Those windows needed cleaned on the inside too or the after would be even more impressive…lol.

Just telling you that because there are always judgy people that look at the pics and have something rude to say… oh well, I just gave you my favorite time saving tip and I also LOVE that you don’t have to use a ton of chemicals to get such good results so take it or leave it.

I’m pretty much never going to use any other method to do this task ever again!!!

If you loved this method you’re also going to want to check out my recipe for some Copycat Homemade Lemi-Shine Detergent Booster for your dishwasher too.


In conclusion, mastering how to remove hard water stains from glass windows has never been easier, thanks to the invaluable tips and techniques provided in this guide.

By arming yourself with the right knowledge and using simple household ingredients, you can effortlessly banish those stubborn mineral deposits, unveiling the true beauty and clarity of your windows.

Whether you’re dealing with minor smudges or tough stains, these tried-and-tested methods will empower you to achieve stunning results without breaking a sweat.

Embrace the confidence that comes with crystal-clear windows, as you bid farewell to the frustration of hard water stains.

So, don’t let hard water take away from the elegance of your living spaces; instead, follow these practical solutions and enjoy the clear view you deserve.

Your windows will thank you for the TLC, and you’ll revel in the refreshing ambiance they bring to your home or workplace.

Let your glass windows shine brightly once more, reflecting the beauty of the world outside and enhancing the overall charm of your cherished spaces.

*Remember, citric acid can definitely burn you, so make sure to use gloves if you need to for the sake of safety.

Exterior Window Cleaning FAQ’s

Is citric acid good for cleaning windows?

Yes, citric acid can be effective for cleaning windows, especially when dealing with hard water stains and mineral deposits.

Citric acid is a natural, environmentally friendly acid found in citrus fruits like lemons, limes, and oranges.

Its acidic properties make it an excellent cleaning agent for removing various stains, including hard water deposits, soap scum, and mineral buildup on glass surfaces.

What cleans better vinegar or citric acid?

Both vinegar and citric acid are effective cleaning agents, but their cleaning abilities may vary depending on the specific cleaning task and the type of stain or residue you’re trying to remove.

Let’s compare their cleaning properties:

Acidic Properties:
Vinegar: Vinegar is acetic acid, typically consisting of around 4-7% acetic acid in water. It’s mildly acidic, which makes it useful for dissolving mineral deposits, soap scum, and some stains.
Citric Acid: Citric acid is a stronger acid compared to vinegar and can be found in a more concentrated form. Its higher acidity makes it particularly effective at tackling tough hard water stains, lime scale, and mineral deposits on various surfaces.

Vinegar: While vinegar is an effective cleaner, some people find its strong, pungent odor unpleasant.
Citric Acid: Citric acid, especially when derived from fresh citrus fruits like lemons, can have a more pleasant and refreshing scent compared to vinegar.

In general, for light cleaning tasks and everyday maintenance, both vinegar and citric acid can be effective. For tougher stains and hard water deposits, citric acid may provide better results due to its higher acidity.

However, it’s essential to remember that both substances are acids and should be used with caution on delicate surfaces like marble or natural stone, as they can cause etching or damage.

*I will add more FAQ’s as they get sent to me.

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citric acid for cleaning glass

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Check out my other cleaning tips

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Otherwise, here are direct links to several of my other cleaning/laundry related posts that you’re also going to love:

Other good resources for removing hard water stains from exterior windows

All my other laundry & cleaning tips

Maybe you don’t wanna go the way that I showed you how to do this…if that is the case, here are some other good reputable resources that you could try instead:

*This cleaning article was originally shared to this blog on August 6th 2018, and has since been updated to improve user experience, add video instruction, as well as to make it as shareable as possible across the social medias.

**Please note that I do try my hardest to provide factual, but easy to understand, information about each topic. If you notice a discrepancy in my methods, facts, or see something that you deem “misinformation/incorrect” please make sure to notify me about it. I would prefer that you send me an email with a link to a more reputable resource on that subject, so that I can correct it as soon as possible. Thanks so much for helping this site become the best that it can be!