If it's time to get your skylights clean, you have come to the right place. In this post, we go over the key things you should know about this job. Take a look at our guide on how to clean your rooflights and windows to ensure that you don't make any costly mistakes.

Key Takeaways on Cleaning Roof Window Pane

  • Rooflights don't require too much maintenance or window cleaning
  • One of the key factors in getting your skylights clean is not using anything abrasive on them
  • It is easy to learn how to clean roof lanterns, windows and skylights, and knowing how to clean them is crucial so that they can last you for many years
  • Make sure the mop and other materials you use are clean before you begin
  • Self-cleaning glass doesn’t need cleaning during sunny or rainy days

How to Clean Skylight Windows from Inside

Before you begin, you want to remove any furniture that is under the windows to keep it from getting wet or dirty. It is a good idea to put a plastic tarp underneath the skylights which will collect water as it drops down from the interior glass.

If you have a cleaning pole or a mop, you can clean your skylight windows from the inside without a ladder. Attach a clean rag to the end of the pole and secure it. Start off by removing all dust while the tool you’re using is still dry. Next, fill a bucket with water and add a few drops of dish soap.

Soak the mop or the rag and wring it out. Now, go over the glass one more time, moving the mop around the skylight.

When you are finished, treat tough spots with a mixture of water and white vinegar. Wipe it down.

Finish off by replacing the wet rag with a dry one so you can dry the glass. Cleaning skylights from the inside is not difficult at all considering that you won't encounter any bird droppings or leaves. 

Cleaning rooflight weather seals. The seals can be wiped down with a soapy cleaning solution too. Just don’t forget to include them in your routine. 

Cleaning the inner panel. The same applies to the inner panel. Make sure to use a non-abrasive product. The best thing to do is go for mild soap. Use the soapy sponge to remove dirt and grime from the surface. Then rinse.

How to Clean Skylight Windows from Outside

Use a ladder if necessary to clean the outside of your skylights. Keep a dry rag over your shoulder to facilitate the process. Start by removing any debris and dusting the skylight glass with a dry rag. Soak a sponge in dish soap and water, squeeze the excess water and wipe down the windows. Do not attempt to clean the glass without having applied water to it first. You do not want to scratch the surface.

If there are stubborn stains, you need to treat them with some vinegar. Just add half a cup of regular vinegar to a gallon of water and stir well. Immerse your sponge into it so it can absorb the mixture. Go over the spot. Repeat as many times as needed to lift the dirt.

Use a hose to spray the windows. Once they dry, apply a thin layer of auto wax to the windows with a clean cloth to protect the glass from getting dirty or cloudy quickly.

As you do this, you may want to also clean your roof from leaves and debris to ensure that your rooflights stay clean.

How to Clean Flat Roof Skylight

Like everything else, you should try a mixture of water and soap. Never use petroleum-based household cleaning products, alcohol or ammonia. Keep in mind that your rooflights for flat roofs may be made of a polycarbonate or acrylic material and it doesn't bode well with harsh cleaners. With regular cleaning, you won't have to put much effort into this job. Just wipe down the surface with a clean cloth. Then wipe down with a rug you soaked into a cleaning solution and leave the glass to dry.

How to Clean Pitched Roof Skylight

You should use a glass cleaning solution or a mixture of water and mild detergent. Apply it to the glass and wipe it down like you normally would. You can use circular motions but the best way to go is to opt for a zig-zag pattern.

It is vital to use a soft cloth or the non-abrasive side of a clean sponge. Do not employ brushes or other abrasive instruments.

If you don’t want to leave streaks on the glass, make it a point to use de-ionised water. For smudge-free results, consider going the old-fashioned way by using some old newspapers. Just be careful with the ink. Your best option is paper printed in soy ink.

How to Clean Tinted Glass Windows

You are advised to avoid abrasive products or heavy-duty scrubbing so as not to damage the film. Truth is that, as long as your windows are not overly dirty, they can be washed with plain water and some rubbing on your part.

How to Clean Non-Tinted Glass

If the glass is not tinted, you should still use water and soap or a purpose glass cleaner to remove grime from the rooflight. There are no special instructions. Just do what you normally would to wash a window.

How to Clean the Inside and Outside of Self-Cleaning Glass Skylights

One of the benefits of self-cleaning glass, regardless of where it is installed, is that it doesn’t let dirt sit and accumulate. About a month after it is installed, the coating that protects it is activated. This way, dirt is broken down with the help of sunlight. At the same time, rainwater helps wash away any remnants of grime.

In that case, do you need to care for it? Well, when there is no sun or rain, the coating is not activated which means you have to manually remove any dirt. The best way to do this is to simply run a water stream over it. There is no need to scrub and in fact, you shouldn’t since this can scratch the coating.

If you want to add some soap, make sure it’s solvent-free. Also, do not spray the glass in direct sunlight or when it's hot.

For heavy staining, you can resort to soapy water. Again, it should be solvent-free. You may have to wipe and rinse a couple of times before you can loosen the dirt and eliminate it. If you are willing to utilise a glass cleaner, do choose one that is non-abrasive.

How to Clean Plastic Skylights

Plastic skylights don’t need any special treatment as compared to glass rooflights. You don’t have to spend a ton of money on expensive cleaning products. All you need is plain water and mild dish soap. Spray the mixture onto the glass and using a clean sponge, spread it all over. Once you remove any marks and dirt, rinse well.

How to Prevent Dripping Condensation on Glass Skylights

There are various steps you can take to prevent condensation from building up and dripping from the skylight onto the walls or floors.

Make sure warm air circulates near the windows by opening up the blinds and shades every day. Do maintain any gas appliances or tumble dryers so that moisture can exit the units properly instead of building up in the space.

In order to improve circulation, you should open the windows to let fresh air in every day, even on cold days. If you have internal exhaust fans, put them to some good use. They can help you expel hot more effectively.

Additional Tips:

  • Avoid cleaning glass surfaces when it's too hot outside. The heat that comes with the sun may create streaks.
  • For some tasks, you may need a ladder to access the rooflight, so if you aren't okay with heights, do not attempt it. Instead, hire someone qualified to do the trick.
  • Always use cleaning tools that are safe for glass and skylight panes (check the label before you proceed).
  • People who want to clean their skylights on the outside should attach a safety harness to a secured point on the roof before they start.
  • If the glass came with any specific cleaning procedures, be sure to adhere to them.

Need a Window Cleaner to Clean Your Skylights from the Outside?

If you cannot do the cleaning yourself, feel free to hire a cleaning company that can safely perform this task to the highest standards. Remember that they have the necessary equipment and skills to do an excellent job. Whether you are looking to clean the windows on the outside of your home or vice versa, you can always count on us. If something else needs to be cleaned, we are here for you. Don't forget to get in touch with us and ask for a no-obligation quote if you are interested. We will be happy to help.

FAQ on How to Clean Skylights on Roof

How do I know if my rooflights need cleaning?

You will probably see spots and debris on the glass. Even if you don’t find any dirt, it is recommended that you wash your windows once or twice a year, both on the inside and out. This will prevent buildup.

Are rooflights easy to clean?

Yes, rooflights are easy to clean as long as they are within reach. The more often you wash them, the less effort you will have to put into the task.

How often should you clean rooflights?

Your rooflights need some good cleaning once or twice a year. It should take care of debris buildup, preventing leakage issues.

Why do you need to clean rooflights?

You should clean your rooflights for the same reason you want to clean and maintain your entire house - because you want them to last longer and look good. Bird droppings, tree debris, rainwater staining and other things can prevent natural light from entering the space. Besides, the accumulation of debris around the exterior of the window might lead to leakage.

What cleaning products should I use to clean my rooflights?

You don’t need any special products or cleaning materials to keep your skylights spick-and-span. Any glass-cleaning solution will work. But if you don’t have one, you can use soap and plain water.

How to clean a skylight tube?

The first thing you need to do is take out the lens and wipe them down with a damp cloth or run them under warm water and wipe them off with a dry towel. Remove any air filters and wash them. Rub your finger inside the tube and remove any dust. You may use a soft cloth. If there are any dead bugs on it or spots, you can use some soap as well. Once you are done, put everything back together.

How to clean mold from skylight?

Select a product that can dissolve mold and wipe down all areas that have been affected by the offender. Remember to provide good ventilation consistently. This will help it dry quickly but in the same way, it won't promote new mold formation.

How to clean hard-to-reach skylights?

One way to do that is to use a ladder. If you don’t feel qualified enough, you can book a cleaning service specifically for that. Just make sure the company offers both internal and external cleaning for hard-to-reach skylights.

How to clean fibreglass skylights?

In most cases, water and mild soap will get the job done without harming the material. What you want to avoid are abrasive products like baking soda as they might scratch the glass. Cleaning and maintenance are not that hard and will need to be done once or twice a year.

Let us know if you have any questions regarding our triple-glazed skylights and how to properly maintain and clean them.