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How to Effectively Clean Mini Blinds

If you let your mini blinds build up too much dust and dirt, they can be impossible to clean. The more you spray and wipe, the more you just spread the dust and grease buildup. Here's how to effectively clean them.

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Prime One End of the Pipe

Prime One End of the Pipe

Grungy mini blinds need super strength cleaning. But professional ultra-sonic cleaning can cost upwards of $65 per blind. That's more than half the cost of new blinds! My blinds are too long to fit in the bathtub, so I built a soaking tank and cleaned all the blinds in my house for around $60. I bought a 10-ft. section of 6-in. diameter PVC drain pipe, along with two cleanout adapters and caps.Start by applying PVC primer to one end of the pipe and the inside of the cleanout adapter. Then coat the pipe and inside of cleanout with PVC cement.Here are more mini blinds tips and fixes.Photo: Kevin Sweeny

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Push the Cleanout Adapter onto the Pipe

Push the Cleanout Adapter onto the Pipe

Next, quickly push the clean-out adapter onto the pipe and hold it in place for about 20 seconds, until the glue sets up.Photo: Kevin Sweeny

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Install the Cleanout Plug

Install the Cleanout Plug

Screw on the cleanout plug and tighten with pliers.Plus: How to Remove a Stuck Cleanout PlugPhoto: Kevin Sweeny

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Mark the Pipe for Cutting

Mark the Pipe for Cutting

Measure the length of the longest blind in your home and mark that length on the pipe, so you can cut off the excess.Plus: Fixing the Lift Cord on a MiniblindPhoto: Kevin Sweeny

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Cut Off Excess Pipe

Cut Off Excess Pipe

Cut off the excess pipe using a circular saw or reciprocating saw. De-burr the cut edges. Then glue on the second cleanout adapter.Photo: Kevin Sweeny

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Remove the Tilt Rod

Remove the Tilt Rod

Remove the mini blinds from the brackets. Turn the tilt control so the blinds are fully open or closed to prevent the slats from sticking together during the soak. Then remove the tilt rod from your blind by pushing the retainer down and removing the metal hook.Photo: Kevin Sweeny

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Roll the Blinds

Roll the Blinds

Roll the blinds around the header rail to keep the slats fully exposed to the cleaning solution and prevent the slats from sticking together.Plus:How to Make Homemade Cleaner With Simple IngredientsPhoto: Kevin Sweeny

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Continue Rolling Blinds to Form a BundlePhoto: Kevin Sweeny

Continue Rolling Blinds to Form a Bundle

Continue rolling the blinds tightly into a bundle so it will fit inside the pipe. Secure the ends with rubber bands.Plus:10 Smart and Practical Uses for Rubber Bands That Actually Work

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Add Soap and WaterPhoto: Kevin Sweeny

Add Soap and Water

Insert the rolled blinds into the pipe, being careful not to catch the ends on the edge of the pipe. Next, Tilt the pipe and add a grease-cutting dishwashing detergent. Avoid strong cleaning agents because they can damage the paint finish on the slats. Fill the pipe about halfway with water, leaving some room for the water to move around.Plus: Speed Cleaning Tips

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Cap the Open End

Cap the Open End

Screw on the cleanout plug and tighten with pliers. Then lay the pipe on two sawhorsesPlus: How to Build a Portable SawhorsePhoto: Kevin Sweeny

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Soak and Agitate

Soak and Agitate

If your blinds have stuck-on grease or food, let them soak in the soapy solution for about 15 minutes to loosen the dirt. Then roll the pipe back and forth for about 5 minutes to churn the soap, water and blinds. Lift one end several times to create side-to-side slosh.Photo: Kevin Sweeny

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Remove Blinds and Rinse

Remove Blinds and Rinse

Remove the soapy blinds and lay over a railing or on a deck. Rinse thoroughly with water to remove soap.Plus:Best Car Cleaning Tips and TricksPhoto: Kevin Sweeny

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Finish Cleaning with a Sponge

Finish Cleaning with a Sponge

Remove any remaining dirt by laying the blinds over the pipe. Flatten and separate the slats. Then wipe with a sponge soaked in soapy water. Flip the blinds over and repeat on the backside of the slats.Photo: Kevin Sweeny

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Preform Final RinsePhoto: Kevin Sweeny

Preform Final Rinse

Rinse off all soap residue. Then lay the blinds over a railing to drain. Wipe with dry microfiber cloth to prevent water spots. Click here for tips on how to straighten bent slats or fix frayed lift cords. Let the blinds dry thoroughly and then reinstall.

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Before and AfterPhoto: Kevin Sweeny

Before and After

The filthy grungy blinds before cleaning turn into spotless blinds after cleaning, and it's much cheaper than buying new blinds! Get more incredible uses for PVC here.