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How we test window cleaners

Here's how we get the results that help you choose the best glass and window cleaner.

cleaning window with a squeegee

Who doesn't want sparkling windows? Here's how we test supermarket glass and window cleaners in the CHOICE lab to find out which products are effective and worth buying.

Our expert testers

We buy window cleaners available from major supermarkets and use our laboratory for testing them. We also work out which products are the best value for money by unit value per 100mL, based on the price we paid at the time of testing.

We also include a home remedy in our testing. Our home test is made up of 1 cup white vinegar and 1 cup of water.

How we choose which window cleaners we test

With a range of products on the market, what makes us choose one window cleaner to test over another? As with most of our product testing, our aim is to test the most brands on the market and what you're most likely to see in stores.

We check instore to see what's available and survey manufacturers to find out about their range of products. From this information we put together a final list that goes to our buyers. They then head out to the retailers and purchase each product, just as a normal consumer would. We do this so we can be sure they're the same as any consumer would find them and not 'tweaked' in any way.

How we test window cleaners

Lab experts put each window cleaner to the test by soiling a PVC sheet with greasy dirt. The soil is able to hold more strongly onto the PVC and allows for better separation of product performance, which is why it's used instead of glass. PVC is also much thinner than glass, which is important when measuring the soil removal with the spectrophotometer. 

Using a scrubbing apparatus attached, the sheet is scrubbed, with the reflectance readings measured before and after cleaning to determine soil removal.

A streak test is also carried out on each product. This is a visual assessment whereby each product is rated based on how many streaks and/or drops are left behind. The test is carried out three times and the results are averaged. 

CHOICE Expert Rating

The CHOICE Expert Rating (which is what we use to determine which products we recommend) is made up of two scores:

  • dirt removal (50%) 
  • streak test (50%).
We care about accuracy. See something that's not quite right in this article? Let us know or read more about fact-checking at CHOICE.