Wednesday, May 27, 2015

I don't do RV windows

Dear Dr. R.V. Shrink:
We laughed out loud when we read your column about the guy constantly working on his rig. My husband is just the opposite. When he retired he thought it meant he never had to lift a finger again unless it was to push a button on his remote.

To keep him from becoming a total couch potato I do encourage him to work on a few honey-do jobs occasionally. Recently he cleaned all the windows on the fifth-wheel. We are spending a month in Colorado and have a mountain view out our picture window that should be on a calendar. It looked great in the full sun but at sunset we could see all the water spots and streaks as if he had never cleaned them.

He thinks his time was totally wasted and never wants to work on a window again. I am not looking through spotty windows for the rest of my life. It is causing some friction to say the least. Am I asking too much? Is an RV any different than a house? Does everyone with an RV have to look through stained glass?
--Glass Half Dirty in Durango

Dear Dirty:
It can be frustrating when you spend the time to do a job and it comes out looking bad. Cleaning methods can differ from a stationary home to a home on wheels. RV owners are always battling road grime. Your husband did not waste his time. He probably removed the worst layer of dirt and is now down to the tough marks from hard water.

 If you check the internet you will find dozens of window cleaning methods that all work to some extent. In my humble opinion, the best method is steel wool. You need to purchase a package of "four aught" steel wool. Four zero's on the package. This will not scratch your glass unless it has some type of coating. Do a small area to experiment, but in most cases there will be no problem.

Steel wool (0000) will take off bugs, road tar, hard water spots and sap. When you're done with that use any kind of window cleaner to finish up.

Once your husband finds out how easy this method is, and how well it works, he may go into the RV mobile window cleaning business. He may discover those mountains outside your clean windows and watch something besides TV.

When you need the windows cleaned in the future, you will say, "Where four aught thou." Then you will hear, "Thou is here on the couch."
--Keep Smilin', Dr. R.V. Shrink


Anonymous said...

Why doesn't DW assume this responsibility? DH could do something he might gain more pleasure from in his retirement. With Fathers Day fast approaching- don't you think that would be nice?

walt kaiser said...

In our coach, we split our duties. We call them Pink ticket and Blue ticket items. Basically everything outside is a blue ticket item and everything inside is a pink ticket item. I do the blue ticket, DW does the pink ticket with me helping on some items.
The Traveling Santa
02 Endeavor.

Anonymous said...

Walt does it exactly as we do it. I do all outside stuff and help inside washing dishes, making the bed, etc. Wife plans meals and does all the cooking. We never discussed it though.

Busyretirees said...

We are like Walt and his DW. As for the windows, I wash them with water and Dawn dish detergent or vinegar and water. Rinse off the windows and then dry them with a micro-fibre cloth. No spots

Kenneth Fuller said...

"Four aught" steel wool works great on really dirty windows and then occasionally a quick touch up is done with "Invisable Glass" cleaner using recycled black and white newspaper for rubbing clean. It comes out streak-free and spotless.

Daniel J. Ryan said...


Hi All.

I would think that every RV'er and Motor Homer, esp Full-Timers would want clean windows. To be able to see the Best Views in this Country.

I have been at this for 55 years now. I make sure my windows are always clean. I am a BLM Camp Host oo a River, and the Campground is just so Beautiful. I have this 7 month position for as many years as I choose to do it. A once in a Life Time Find, for a Full-Time Motor Homer.
From Dan & Austin, (My Yorkie). We are Full-Timers and True "Spirits of the Wind"

Anonymous said...

Are both of the wifes arms broken? If the windows are important to you then go clean them!

Anonymous said...

The only way that I can do the back picture window on our 5th wheel is to use soap (dawn) & vinegar with a large extendable handle, spray with glass cleaner then use the squeeze to clean (just like windows on a vehicle). I do the window every month. No spots no streaks.

simonsrf said...

Using Turtle Synthetic Wax and a micro-fiber towel makes window cleaning quick and easy.

Anonymous said...

Be sure to remove all residue of the steel wool. The wool breaks down into very small wire like pieces that can cause rust stains if they lodge onto painted surfaces.

I use dawn liquid and water as cleaner. To remove water from the window I use professional grade squeegees. These are available at janitorial supply stores and are a little expensive but worth it. At the janitorial supply you will find cleaners for water stained glass that works well. Using professional products generally reduces effort and leaves a quality result.