Window Vacuum Cleaners

Window vacuums are small and compact vacuums designed for cleaning windows, mirrors, countertops, tiles, showers and similar bare, flat surfaces.

Window vacuums remove any liquid and dirt from cleaned surfaces, leaving the area shiny and streak/spot free.

Manual squeegees can do such cleaning tasks well, but window vacuums can do them at least as good as squeegees, but faster and easier, saving time and effort.

Published: March 1, 2019.

window vacuum cleaner

Window Vacuums - Features and Specifications

squeegeeManual squeegees use blade made of plastic, rubber, silicone, even sponge to collect and remove the liquids from the flat surfaces like windows, mirrors and similar.

Window vacuums operate using similar principle - they commonly feature plastic/rubber/silicone blade to collect the liquids from the surfaces, but the liquids are removed using vacuum suction.

Blades are usually 7-12 inches (~18 - 30 cm) wide, allowing the user to clean even large surfaces quickly. Dirty liquids tank capacity is usually in the 0.1 - 0.3 liters range, allowing the user to complete the cleaning task without the need to empty the tank more times during the cleaning.

Most window vacuums are cordless, handheld units, featuring power fade-free lithium ion batteries and suction motors in the 10-30 watts range. Such motors require relatively small and lightweight batteries and can operate up to 30-40 minutes on a single battery charge, model dependent, of course.

Window vacuums are designed to operate in most positions, but generally, they clean well in vertical and side position, with some models working well even when turned upside down.

Note: these vacuums are simple to use and maintain units, but before the very first use, be sure to thoroughly read the manual/instructions. Better safe than sorry.

karcher wv1 plus 1

Most window vacuums are actually two units in a set: a window vacuum cleaner and a spray bottle.

A spray bottle is filled with window detergent concentrate and water. Such cleaning solution is sprayed over cleaned surfaces and gently scrubbed using microfiber pads. As the surface is scrubbed, cleaning solution removes dust and dirt, including stubborn stains and spots.

Finally, vacuum cleaner removes the dirty liquids off the glass.

Note: some window vacuums feature microfiber pad and two tanks onboard: one for cleaning solution and another for dirty liquids. The idea behind such design is to have just one device and to speed up the cleaning - this aproach is highly individual and some people like it, some don't. Personally, the author of this article prefer separate units (separate window vacuum cleaner from the spray bottle).

In order to increase the cleaning range, manual window vacuums feature extension sets - these sets come by default, or can be ordered separately.

Robotic Window Vacuum Cleaners

robot window vacuum cleanerRobotic window vacuum cleaners are autonomous window vacuums, allowing the user to clean the windows with minimum effort.

Robotic window vacuums use the power of suction to 'stick' to vertical surfaces like large window.

In most situations, window robotic vacuums are corded unit (no batteries - minimum weight), featuring safety cords/wires, tied to safety pods, fences or anything similar that is strong enough to withstand the robot window vacuum cleaner falling off.

These units are remotely controlled using IR remote controls or using Apps (Android, iOS).

As such, window robotic vacuums allow the user to clean external surfaces safely and more comfortably than before.

Tap or Distilled Water?

distilled waterWhen cleaning floors using steam mops, the use of tap water can lead to buildup of residue on the water heaters and cause streaks and spots on the floors.

Window vacuum cleaners don't have water heaters, but in the areas with really hard water, water residue can leave ugly streaks and marks on the newly cleaned windows and mirrors.

Call me perfectionist, but although demineralized or distilled water cost more than tap water (by large margin), they are worth the price of having perfectly clean windows, mirrors and other similar surfaces - even when small amounts of liquids remain on the glass, if there is a mineral residue in the tap water, it will be deposited on the window.


For short: if you have large windows and other similar flat surfaces, consider good manual window vacuum and use cleaning solution made by mixing window detergent concentrate and demineralized/distilled water.

For cleaning external window, in order to increase the safety, consider robotic vacuum cleaners and clean the flat surfaces using your smartphone.