There’s something majestic about how stained-glass windows look, especially when sunlight enters through them. Although it’s not everyone’s taste, this classic Gothic staple does have its share of fans. As you might’ve noticed, stained-glass windows are often seen in old homes and churches. But even then, many people today can appreciate this decorative element in their space.
You might’ve bought a home that has stained-glass windows, or maybe you plan to have some installed by your entry door. Whichever the case, it’s always handy to know how to maintain stained-glass windows. This won’t just maintain its beauty, but it will also lengthen its use.
Get that great first impression from your guests! To help you get started, here are some things you should know about these beautiful windows.
A Brief History of Stained Glass Windows
Stained glass windows are often associated with the church interior, fittingly so as the earliest stained-glass windows were made for the Roman Catholic Church. But even then, the ancient art of creating stained glass can be traced back to the early Egyptians. Stained glass windows were similar to paintings in that they were frequently shaped into religious portraits and themes. Many individuals are still inspired by these old masterpieces, incorporating basic yet attractive stained-glass windows into the design and aesthetics of their homes.
How To Clean Stained Glass Windows
Most of the time, all they need is a little dusting here and there. However, this is only good for daily cleaning. For a more thorough clean, use a soft cloth and dampen it with distilled water. Using tap water will only leave an ash-like residue, which contains minerals that are left behind when water evaporates. Avoid using any abrasive cleaning products as these may harm the quality of the windows.
Getting Rid of Mold
Nobody wants to find mold anywhere in their home. Fortunately, it’s nothing a little homemade cleaning solution can’t fix. Have you noticed how vinegar is used all around the home due to its cleaning properties? Well, stained-glass windows are another thing that benefits from it, specifically when it comes to getting rid of mold. With four parts water and one part white vinegar, you now have a friendly cleaning solution that’s aggressive only to mold present on your windows.
Other store-bought cleaning products can work just as well, but at the risk of your glass getting discolored. This homemade solution is your safest and best bet.
How To Restore Stained Glass Windows
Like anything else in your home, stained-glass windows need some managing too. To help preserve its beauty and condition, especially when it’s old, it’s crucial to take care of them the right way.
Keeping the Glass in Place
Other elements of the windows, such as the came that keep the patterns of glass in place. Came is usually composed of brass, copper, lead, and zinc, thus the metallic look of them. Inspect the quality of the putty that keeps the glass in its frames. Should there be any loose or missing parts, replace them immediately.
Loose Glass Pieces
It is totally normal for the glass to expand and compress as the windows age. This is their way of regulating and adjusting themselves to the temperature of their immediate environment. However, this also means that the metal no longer fits the glass like it used to. If this happens, you’ll need to have the stained-glass windows re-fitted by a professional stained-glass window provider or a window installation company.
You might have a vague idea of how lead can be harmful to a person’s health. But generally, having lead content in your stained-glass windows should be no reason for concern. However, if the metal parts that keep the pieces together start to oxidize due to age, you can easily wipe it off.
Using a pair of gloves and a cloth, simply wipe the powder-like residue off the surface. Afterward, throw the gloves and cloth away so it doesn’t come in contact with anything and anyone else. Take note, when cleaning lead keep your area well-ventilated and wear a mask.
Knowing how to take care of your stained-glass windows will allow them to continue being a decorative statement in your home. Considering that a whole window is made up of multiple pieces put together by came, stained-glass windows do need a different regimen for care and maintenance. Although this may mean that they require more attention than your ordinary windows, the personality they offer a space should be enough reason to keep them around. Any room with a stained-glass window can easily stand out.