Tips for Maintaining Your Blinds and Shades

Tips for Maintaining Your Blinds and Shades
BY BLINDSTER | April 27, 2016
September 26, 2023

Like all things in your home, your window treatments need occasional maintenance to look and operate at their best. For the vast majority of blinds and shades, only light maintenance is necessary to avoid running into problems down the road.

At Blindster, we sell window treatments that are designed to last for years without issues, but taking exceptional care of your blinds and shades is an easy way to prolong their life and keep them looking as beautiful as the day you purchased them.

Maintaining your blinds and shades is a simple process that can be incorporated into both your weekly “light” cleaning routine and monthly or bi-monthly “deep” cleaning routines. So whether you’ve maintained your blinds and shades from day one and are just looking for new ways to get the job done, or you’re ready to begin a maintenance routine for the first time, you can’t go wrong with our tips below.

1. Wipe away dust every week.

Wipe away dust every week

Dust, pet hair and pollen, are the biggest threats to your blinds and shades. Window treatments that are installed in rooms with heavy foot traffic, such as living rooms, bedrooms, and bathrooms, can accumulate dust rapidly and may need more frequent attention. Keeping a strict dusting schedule for your blinds and shades is an easy way to keep them in perfect shape without the need for intensive cleaning, and it also helps prevent operational problems due to irritants getting inside the headrail and other moving parts.

Safely dust blinds and shades that have only a small build-up of debris, using your vacuum’s soft brush attachment to quickly lift away loose dust and dirt from fabric, slats, and the headrail. To get in between the slats on your blinds, simply use an old sock or a duster that’s designed to fit into small spaces. Finally, use a soft, clean cloth and a mixture of warm water and a gentle cleaning solution to wipe away small stains and areas of accumulated dirt and dust from your blinds’ slats and your shades’ fabric that won’t lift away with your vacuum or feather duster.

2. Smooth wrinkled shades by lowering them, steaming them, or using a wrinkle-remover.

Smooth wrinkled shades by lowering them, steaming them, or using a wrinkle-remover.

Shades look their best when they are perfectly crisp and without any wrinkles, folds, bumps, or creases. Shades can easily become wrinkled due to things like humidity, exposure to open air, and being raised for long periods of time.

If your shades have become wrinkled, there are three effective options for getting the wrinkles out and restoring a beautiful matte and uniform appearance to the fabric:

Lower your shades and keep them down for several days.

Shades that are raised and rolled up for long periods of time can naturally become wrinkled. Getting those wrinkles out can be difficult if the shades are repeatedly raised and lowered and never have a chance to remain stationary in an extended position. For a natural and non-intrusive method for getting wrinkles out of your shades, simply lower them as far as you can and keep them down for around 48 to 72 hours. During that time, the wrinkles should come out naturally without any further intervention on your behalf.

Steam the wrinkles out.

The easiest way to get wrinkles out of clothing is to use heat and steam, and the same principle is true for shades. You can use handheld steamers that are designed for clothing to quickly remove wrinkles from Cellular Shades, Roman Shades, Roller Shades, and more. Use a handheld steamer that puts out continuous steam and direct its flow across the entire wrinkled surface of your shade. Put gentle pressure on the bottom of the shade as you use the steamer to help further de-wrinkle the fabric.

Use a wrinkle-removing solution.

Sprays and other chemical solutions that are designed to release and eliminate wrinkles can be highly convenient, but it’s important to be careful when using these on your shades. Always check the cleaning and care instructions for your shades before using any chemicals on them, and do a test patch on a small inconspicuous area to test the effect the spray will have on the fabric. If the fabric doesn’t stain, fade, or discolor, the wrinkle spray will be safe to use and can be a great alternative to a handheld steamer for quickly releasing wrinkles.

3. Repair or replace broken slats.

Repair or replace broken slats

Pets, small children, and everyday household accidents can ultimately lead to the slats on your blinds cracking, chipping, and breaking. When that happens, you have two options: repairing the broken slat or replacing it altogether.

For wood and faux wood blinds, using a strong wood glue or other adhesive and carefully gluing any broken pieces of slat back together is a quick and inexpensive repair. But if one or more of your slats were seriously damaged and are unable to be glue back together, you may need to replace the slats entirely.

To do that, follow these steps:

  • Remove the plugs underneath the bottom rail and untie the lift cord on both sides.
  • Pull the lift cord through the slats until you reach the damaged or broken slats.
  • Remove the damaged or broken slats and insert the replacement slats.
  • Thread the lift cord through the replacement slats.
  • Tie the remaining sections of lift cord together.
  • Place the excess lift cord inside the holes on the bottom rail and replace the plugs.

4. Fix misbehaving vertical blind slats by flipping them and using a hole punch.

Fix misbehaving vertical blind slats

If one or two slats on your vertical blinds can’t stay aligned with the rest, there’s a good chance they may be off-kilter due to problems with the hooks at the top of the slat itself. For a quick and easy way to remedy this problem, remove the slat and flip it upside down. Then, use a hole punch to create a new hole that should be roughly the same size and shape as the holes on your slats. The slat will move smoothly and stay in-line with the rest of slats, restoring a uniform appearance to your vertical blinds.