How to Clean Car Windshield Outside in 7 Surprisingly Easy Steps

Written by

Bruce Sonnier


Marcus Dutton

how to clean car windshield outside

It’s important to keep a car’s front window clear of any visual obstruction for safe driving and to keep the car presentable. But how to clean car windshield outside?

To achieve a spotless windshield, you need to clean off bugs and tar with a bug remover, lift the wipers for a thorough cleaning, spray glass cleaner on the windshield and wipe it vertically and horizontally on one side first then the other side, buff the windshield afterwards, and wipe the wipers clean. Read below for more details.


What You Need to Follow This Tutorial


There are just a few things you need for cleaning a windshield. Make sure to prepare them to make the cleaning process easier.

  • Bug Remover Spray – If there are bugs and tar on your car’s windshield, you can use a bug remover spray to clean them off.
  • Mesh Sponge – For scrubbing the windshield.
  • Glass Cleaner – For your glass cleaner, you can either buy a commercial cleaner at any auto store or you can clean outside windshield with vinegar mixed with water.

But if you’re going for a commercial glass cleaner, make sure it’s ammonia-free to be safe on your car’s windshield.

  • Gloves
  • Step Tool
  • Microfiber Towels – A couple of microfiber towels should be prepared for wiping the windshield clean and for buffing.
  • Paper Towels – You would also need some paper towels for cleaning the wipers.
  • Warm Soap Water or Denatured Alcohol (optional) – For cleaning windshield wipers

Step by Step Instructions


Accumulated bugs, tar, haze, dirt, etc. can be a problem on your car’s windshield, especially if they are hard to remove. Adding to the problem would be the streaks that could get left behind if you don’t clean it properly.

With these step-by-step instructions, those things will no longer be your problem, as you’ll be able to thoroughly clean off contaminants without causing any streaks.

Step 1: Clean Off Bugs and Tar Using a Bug Remover Spray and a Mesh Sponge

Spray the entire exterior windshield with a bug remover spray. Leave the bug remover spray on the windshield’s surface for about 5 to 10 minutes. The dirtier the windshield, the longer you should leave it on.

Then, scrub the windshield with a mesh sponge. Finally, rinse the windshield with water.

Step 2: Lift the Wipers From the Windshield

For full access to the windshield, lift the wipers up. With them out of the way, you’ll be able to wipe the entire glass surface.

Step 3: Spray Glass Cleaner on One Side of the Windshield

If you are going to use a commercial glass cleaner, you might need to dilute it first, depending on the glass cleaner you are using. So check the product instructions to see how to use it.

If you want to create your own glass cleaner using vinegar and water, just combine them in a 10% to 90% vinegar to water ratio or a higher ratio of vinegar to water. This mixture will also clean outside windshield haze.

To make cleaning car windshield outside more manageable, you should work on one side at a time, spraying either on the right or left side first.

Step 4: Wipe the First Half of the Windshield Vertically, Then Horizontally

It would be advisable to wear gloves when you clean a windshield outside to prevent any smearing. It may also help to use a step stool to reach the central parts of the windshield.

Wipe the windshield with a microfiber cloth moving in vertical lines first, then horizontal lines for a streakless cleaning. Start at the windshield’s upper center, wiping from top to bottom to wipe vertically, and continuously work in that manner until you’ve finally reached the windshield’s edge.

After wiping half of the windshield vertically, wipe it again in horizontal lines.

You may re-wipe an area if it’s still dirty.

Step 5: Repeat Step Number Four on the Other Half of the Windshield

After you’ve finished steps three and four on the first half of the windshield, move on to the other side of the windshield and repeat steps three and four on it.

Step 6: Buff the Windshield’s Surface

Make your car’s windshield shine by buffing it with a microfiber towel. Similar to how you wiped the windshield clean, also buff the windshield one side at a time.

Step 7: Clean the Wipers

Finally, use your paper towel to clean the windshield wipers. If they’re extra dirty, wet the towel with warm soap water or denatured alcohol instead of just water.


By doing these steps on how to clean car windshield outside, you’ll be able to thoroughly and effectively clean exterior windshield haze, windows without leaving streaks.

And you’ll be out on the road with a presentable car that’s much safer to drive. Help us promote car cleanliness and safe driving by sharing this article.

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