Figuring out how to clean mini blinds can be a bit of a challenge, since you can't just take them off and put them in the wash machine or send them to the dry cleaners. However, once you know how - it's not really very difficult at all.
I still remember the days of the big heavy metal venetian blinds. What a pain they were to clean! Now, we have light plastic and resin ones, and wood too if you can afford it!
To cleaning mini blinds you can leave them hanging and just wipe them down from time to time, until they get too dirty. In most cases, if I stay on top of things (a big if!) I never have to remove them for scrubbing. Here's how I keep mine clean:
Brush with a soft brush or microfiber cloth once a month or so. This keep most of the dust under control. If you live in very dusty conditions you may want to do this more often, or use a good quality microfiber dusting cloth/mitt.
Sometimes, especially in kitchens and bathrooms or during damp seasons, the dust seems to be glued to the surfaces of the blinds. If you are very luck, you may be able to remove a thin layer with the use of a damp microfiber cloth - use water that is very warm or even hot if you can stand it. If, after a few wipes it is clear that it is not going to come off this way, you are going to have to use a full-pronged attack. I have an indoor and an outdoor method. The indoor method only works if your blinds are shorter than your bathtub!
The indoor method to clean mini blinds (including cleaning venetian blinds) is not my favorite. It is messy and a bit awkward, but if it's winter, or you don't have a grassy yard, it may be the best that you can do.
Always start by dusting the blinds to remove any loose dust or dirt.
Bathtub (length of tub determines limit of length of blinds you can clean)Dish SoapScrub brush or microfiber clothA couple of good-sized towels
1. Put about 6 inches of very warm water in the bathtub. Add a good squirt of dish soap. Dish soap works best for this, as it is designed to help break down gooey messes.
2. Open the blinds to their full length and tilt them completely, upwards or downwards. Remove the blinds from the window, and put them carefully in the tub. Try to kind of 'accordian-fold' them into the tub. Let soak for a few minutes. How long really depends on how dirty they are and how much elbow grease you want to expend. I don't recommend more than 15 minutes either way. Use the soaking time to clean the window.
3. Unfolding the blind one section at time, thoroughly scrub the part facing upwards with your microfiber cloth or scrub brush. The microfiber cloth will do a better and faster job, so I highly recommend it over the brush. Once you have done the entire blind, top to bottom, carefully lift it from the water (holding it at the top) and turn it over so that you can wash the other side the same way.
4. Once you have a clean mini blind, you have a couple of options:a. If it is the only blind you are cleaning today, drain the water from the tub and rinse it in cool water. Wipe with a towel at least well enough to stop any dripping orb. Remove it from the tub and dry it off with a soft towel or dry microfiber. As long as I hand dry most of the blind, I haven't found that not rinsing is a problem. The other advantage to hand drying is that you will find any spots you may have missed for a quick touch-up.
5. Hang the blind back in the window. Leave it at it's full length until it is completely dry. Once it's dry, you can adjust it any way you like.
6. Once you have washed all the blinds you are going to for the day - you have the perfect opportunity to wash the bathroom floor, as it will likely be quite wet!
This method commonly used to clean mini blinds makes the least mess in the house, but the real reason I like it is because it is outside. In my house, it also often results in a bit of a water fight. He/she who has the hose rules the world!
Old shower curtain or clean tarp if you don't want to do this right on the grass/driveway.
Hose with nozzle
Biodegradable dish soap (optional if using high quality microfiber)
Bucket, filled with water and a little soap if using
Microfiber cloth or scrub brush
Soft towel or dry microfiber to remove excess water
1. Open the blinds to their full length and tilt them completely, upwards or downwards. Remove the blinds from the window, and lay them carefully on the ground/trap.
2. Spray the blinds with the hose, just to wet them down.
3. Thoroughly scrub the part facing upwards with your microfiber cloth or scrub brush. The microfiber cloth will do a better and faster job, so I highly recommend it over the brush. Once you have done the entire blind, top to bottom, carefully lift (holding it at the top) and turn it over so that you can wash the other side the same way.
4. If you have a deck, you can hang the blind over the railing to drip dry. If not, remove as much water as you can with a dry cloth, (I would move it off the tarp) and take inside to hang back in the window.