How to Clean Inside Windshield of Your Car

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Does your car’s appearance mean a lot to you? If so, then you might be giving efforts on cleaning your car regularly. You can clean the outside of your car easily with a wash. But having a clean inside windshield isn’t a piece of cake as you can’t wash inside your car. However, you know the solution. An automotive glass cleaner makes the job easy for you. 

But that’s not so easy as it sounds. We have seen many car owners weren’t getting their desired outcome from an auto glass cleaner. Every time they clean the inside, always there’s a streaky mess left behind. And, this reflects on the windshields poorly. The problem is, most of the car owners don’t know the right way of how to clean the inside windshields. Without knowing the way, you’ll end up putting the cart before the horse. 

As you’re reading out this write up, we assume you’re facing the same problem and looking for an effective solution. No worries. You’ve arrived at the right place. In this article, I’ll walk you through the best way to clean inside car windshields. 

What makes inside of windshield dirty?


Before jumping into the how-to section, let’s know the reasons behind the dirt and buildups inside your windshields. 

  • Dirt and Dust

Most of the time drivers tend to overlook the inside windshield while washing or cleaning the car. All they do is just giving a mere touch up with a brush. But this isn’t enough to clean car windshield. As a result, fine dust particles rest on the glass and form buildups over times and make the windshields dirty. 

  • Smoke

Another major reason for the dirty inside windshield is smoke. Yes, that comes from smoking cigarettes. When you smoke inside your car, the smoke particles spread the whole car and stick to different surfaces which include the windshields too. This form a film-like layer mixing with other dirt and reduces the visibility and clarity of a clean inside windshield. 

  • Greasy Outgassing

Most car experts opine that the main culprit behind the thin film buildups inside car windshields is greasy outgassing. Seems confusing? Let me help you get it. Most of the interior equipment of a car such as seat covers, dashboard, panellings, window frames, etc. are made of plastic, vinyl, and rubber. And, these are nothing but refined synthetic olds or crude. In high temperature, when you drive under the hot sun, vinyl and rubber break down and leach oil which gets evaporated and trapped inside the windshields. 

This evaporated gas cools down and mixes with dust particles on the windshield glasses. The overall result is an oily film which is too stubborn to remove with water, let alone with a brush. It reduces the visibility of your windshields severely. 

  • Other factors

Apart from the reasons mentioned above, several other factors are responsible for a dirty windshield. The most common is making arts with fingers on the windshield and your kids may love to do this often. But these arts cause streaks inside the windshield which make the windshield dirty. 

Guide on How to Clean Inside Car Windshield


Before putting your hands on the car, you should arrange all the necessary tools in the first place. So, make sure you have the following tools to clean inside of windshields. 

What You’ll Need

  • Lint-free microfiber rags: Never use old cloths such as used t-shirts to clean the windshield. Also, try to avoid paper towels. They usually have lint and leave small particles of fabric behind after wiping off the glass which causes streaking. Microfibre cloths are best for cleaning purpose as they don’t have this problem. So, use microfibre towels for cleaning inside windshields. You may need several pieces for the best result. 
  • Glass cleaner: The thing you need the most to clean inside of the windshield is a glass cleaner. But, you shouldn’t use conventional glass cleaners which you use in household cleaning. They contain ammonia which causes harm to the windshields, especially on the tinted rear windshield. So you have to use an auto glass cleaner which is specially designed for cleaning car glasses. You can pick the best automotive glass cleaner from our list. Check it out. 
  • Rubbing Alcohol: You’ve already known about the oily film inside your car windshield. You need to remove this film when you clean windshield inside and this process is called degreasing. Rubbing alcohol will help you out to remove the oily film, clean the greasy windshield inside, and prepare the surface to apply a glass cleaner. 
  • Vinegar: Sometimes salt buildups can occur inside car windshields. It occurs especially in areas close to a sea. Vinegar can help you get rid of salt buildups. However, if there’s is no sea close to your area, vinegar isn’t a must for cleaning car windshield. 

Cleaning Steps


Once you’ve got the necessary equipment, you’re ready to start your cleaning operation. But you have to get your ducks in a row. To get the best result. So, follow the step by step guide: 

Step 1: Clean the outside first 

It may sound weird. But it’s necessary to clean the outer surface of the windshield first before going for the interior surface. A clean outside windshield would give you a clear view of the dirt and streak inside windshields and you could clean the surface better. So, have a thorough cleaning on the outer surface windshield and then approach inside. You can simply wash the outside with soapy water and then use an auto glass cleaner

Step 2: Wipe away the dirt

This is the first step to have a clean inside windshield. Get a dry microfibre towel and clean the whole surface inside the windshield. Remember, you don’t need to add a cleaner in this step. You’re only removing the dirt as much as you can to avoid a sticky mess of dirt when you apply the cleaner. Move the towel in a circular motion as it would attack the dirt particles from every angle and dislocate them from the surface. 

Once you’re done with this circular motion, pick another towel or flip the opposite side of the towel which is still unused. Then clean the whole surface again. This time, use a straight up and down motion. It would get the surface rid of dry dirt and dust particles. Make sure clean the space between the dashboard and the windshield thoroughly. You may find it difficult to clean this space properly as it’s tough to reach every inch of this tight space. 

In this case, you can use the backhand method to clean this tight space effectively. All you need to do is, face towards the rear of your car, cover your palm with the towel, put your hand on the glass and face the palm towards the glass. Now you can easily reach every corner of this space and clean it. 

Step 3: Degrease the surface

After wiping the dry dirt off the glass surface, you have to decrease the surface to remove stains and oily films. Here you’ll be using rubbing alcohol. Pour the alcohol into a glass or a cup and dip a clean microfiber towel into it. Then wring it a little but not too dry. After that scrub the glass surface in the same way you did during the dry wipe. That means using the circular motion first and then the vertical motion up and down. Alcohol breaks down the oily film and the towel wipes it off the glass. 

However, you should be careful to avoid any liquid drop falling on the dashboard. If you notice any, wipe it off immediately with a paper towel. It would decolourize the dashboard if it sits too long on it. After finishing this step, dry the surface immediately using a clean dry towel. You have to be fast to avoid drying of the liquid by itself before you wipe it off. It’s essential to avoid streaking. 

Step 4: Apply the windshield cleaner

You can’t have a clean inside windshield without using a car windshield cleaner. You already know why you should use it. Now it comes to how to use a windshield cleaner. Well, it’s pretty much the same as the decreasing step. First, spray the cleaner on a clean microfiber towel. Remember not to apply the cleaner directly on the glass, It would dry up quickly leaving a stubborn smudge. 

After spraying the cleaner on the towel, do the same way as you did to degrees the surface. Use the circular motion followed by the vertical motion and clean the whole surface well. After finishing with the cleaner, dry the whole surface with another clean towel and you have a crystal clear windshield. 

Bonus tip: Never clean your windshield under the direct sun. Always do the cleaning job under a shade or a cool place. It would make the job more convenient and effective. 

How To Clean Your Inside Windshield

How often to clean inside windshield?

Cleaning car windshield totally depends on your preferences. How long would you see the dirty windshield? If you take snacks or smoke inside your car and drive keeping with windows open, then you’ll need to clean the windshield regularly. However, check the interior surface often and if you feel it dirty, clean it for better visibility and clarity. 

Now it’s time to conclude the write-up. After going through this article, you’ve known about the best way to clean car windshield. Apply this knowledge in real life and have a clean inside windshield. If you intend to find the best car windshield cleaner, have a look at the buying guide of best automotive glass cleaners in 2020. Explore The Best Automotive Glass Cleaners In 2020