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auto glass cleaner

The Best Car Glass Cleaner 2020

Using an auto glass cleaner to clean your car windows is far more effective than a standard car wash soap. They are available as a spray, aerosol or liquid gel and are designed specifically for automotive use.

The best car window cleaner is the Meguiar’s Perfect Clarity, which is a professional grade formula that provides superior cleaning power and a streak free finish.

Cleaning car windows can be easier in some cars than others but without the correct cleaner, it’s made much harder. From achieving a streak free finish to removing all dirt from the window, there are many products best suited for the job.

Auto Glass Cleaner Comparison

Auto Glass CleanerTypeAmmonia Free
Meguiar's G8224SprayYes
Adam's Polishes Glass CleanerSprayYes
Chemical GuysSprayYes
Driven Extreme DutyGelNo
3M 08888AerosolNo
Invisible Glass 92194SprayYes

When using a car window cleaner, it’s advised that you use a formula that contains no ammonia or alcohol. This ensures it is safe on all car windows because strong solutions can damage tinted windows and perish window rubbers or sealants.

The exterior glass may contain tougher dirt that the auto glass cleaner may not be able to remove. If this is the case, we recommend that you use a clay bar kit to capture the dirt and then clean using a glass cleaner.

Clean car windows improves your vision and makes the appearance of both the exterior and interior of the car look much better. Below is a list of the best car window cleaners that provides a clean, streak free finish and a pleasant scent.

The Best Car Window Cleaner


1. Meguiar’s Perfect Clarity Auto Glass Cleaner


Meguiar’s are a highly reputable detailing brand that are known for their high quality products. Their Perfect Clarity car window cleaner is a popular option that is a professional strength formula designed to provide a streak free finish.

A unique and desirable feature of this auto glass cleaner is the fact that it can be used in direct sunlight. Although you may be able to use some alternative car windows cleaners in the sun, many simply leave streaks or obvious residue marks.

Other features of the Meguiar’s Perfect Clarity include:

  • Anti hazing solution
  • Streak free finish
  • Can be used within direct sunlight
  • Fights bugs, tree sap, vinyl fog, road grime and droppings
  • Safe on all windows including tinted
  • High quality 24 oz spray bottle

Compared to many of the alternatives, the Meguiar’s is one of the best car window cleaners that combines performance and value for the money. It’s an anti-hazing solution that is safe to use and provides superior cleaning power.

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2. Adam’s Polishes Car Window Cleaner


Adam’s is a premium detailing brand with a strong following from professional detailers. Their car window cleaner is available in different bottle sizes and is an eco friendly formula with no ammonia or alcohol, which means it’s safe on all windows.

It’s the brands new and improved formula that includes optical clarifiers for additional visibility and a “crisp” appearance. According to Adam’s, this is the main features that was missing from the previous cleaner.

Other features of the Adam’s Polishes Auto Glass Cleaner include:

  • Streak free finish with a spray and wipe
  • Improved optical clarifiers for extra visibility
  • Safe for tinted windows
  • Multiple bottle sizes
  • No ammonia or alcohol
  • 110% satisfaction guarantee
  • Made in the USA

Overall, it is the best auto glass cleaner on the market but you will be paying more than the Meguiar’s alternative. They have a similar formula and spray bottle but if you are willing to pay the extra for the Adam’s Polish, it won’t disappoint.

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3. Chemical Guys Car Glass Cleaner


Another popular car window cleaner is the Chemical Guys Signature Series, which is a spray-on formula. It’s safe to use on tinted windows and is completely free of ammonia, which makes it suitable for a wide range of glass surfaces.

According to the brand, it uses an advanced formula that breaks down any dirt and road grime. Once the dirt is dissolved, it simply wipes clear to leave a streak free finish.

Other features of the Chemical Guys Signature Series include:

  • Eco-friendly formula
  • Available in a 16 or 128 oz spray bottle
  • Safe to use on tinted windows
  • Easy to apply spray-on formula
  • Not suitable for direct sunlight usage
  • Doesn’t leave behind any scent
  • Made in the USA

The Chemical Guys Signature Series is a high quality and affordable car window cleaner. It’s safe to use, effective and easily wipes clean with a microfiber towel.

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4. Driven Extreme Duty Auto Glass Cleaner

If you are looking for the best car window cleaners for water spots, the Driven Extreme formula is the answer. It’s designed to tackle the toughest of water spots that are caused from the buildup of calcium and minerals. Although it’s a strong glass cleaner, it’s still completely safe to use.

The formula is a combination of an acid gel and abrasive chemicals that cut through the water spots and removes all dirt from the windows.

Other features of the Driven Extreme Glass Cleaner include:

  • Liquid gel based formula
  • Designed for water spots
  • Suitable for a range of other surfaces
  • Can be used multiple times
  • 16 oz bottle

The Driven Extreme car window cleaner is one of the strongest formulas on the market. It’s designed for tough water spots, lime scale, salt spray, rust deposits, mold, mildew and other bits of dirt. If you have tried some of the glass cleaners without any success, this is the best cleaner for you.

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5. 3M 08888 Car Glass Cleaner


3M are a global brand and known for producing premium products. This auto glass cleaner is an aerosol with a no drip foaming action that clings to the dirt upon the windows.

The brand states that it effortlessly cuts through stubborn grit and grime to restore the shine back into the automotive glass.

Other features of the 3M Car Glass Cleaner include:

  • Aerosol application
  • Suitable for all glass surfaces
  • No drip foaming action
  • Streak-free finish
  • Also suitable for car wraps and plastics
  • Wipes dry immediately
  • 19 oz aerosol bottle

    The 3M auto glass cleaner is a fast acting and easy to use formula that is completely safe to use. Although it’s slightly expensive to similar aerosol glass cleaners, the no drip foaming action make it less messy to use.

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    6. Invisible Glass Car Glass Cleaner


    The Invisible Glass Cleaner is a popular cleaner for both automotive and domestic use. This particular product is the improved “Premium” version that provides additional additives for tackling virtually any dirt found on car windows.

    It’s a powerful cleaner that the brand states uses no streaky soaps, scents, or dyes. Invisible Glass also promises that it leaves zero residue on your glass.

    Other features of the Invisible Glass Cleaner include:

    • 32 oz high quality spray bottle
    • Complete ammonia free
    • Suitable for a range of glass surfaces
    • Improves the shine and clarity
    • Safe on tinted automotive glass
    • Money back guarantee
    • Made in the USA

    The Invisible Glass Cleaner is an affordable yet highly effective solution for cleaning car windows. Although it’s suitable for a range of surfaces, it far outperforms the majority of all-purposes cleaners.

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    Car Glass Cleaner Buying Guide

    Even though it often seems impossible to get your auto glass perfectly clean and clear, it can be done if you follow the right tips and guidelines. Not only does the clean glass help you see clearly, it also gives you the ability to drive better without the frustration of seeing through streaks and dirt.

    Many people will be happy with the finish of their windows after using a car wash soap. but you will see streaks and dirt present on the glass surface. We highly recommend a quality auto glass cleaner and below is a detailed guide of factors that you should consider before purchasing any glass cleaner.

    best glass cleaner for car windows

    No Ammonia and Alcohol Formula

    Many glass cleaners contain ammonia and alcohol in the formula, and even though this is great for cutting through any tough grease build up, there are also several different disadvantages.

    When you look at ammonia chemically, it is used for rubber, plastic, leather, and vinyl to help dry them out. If you have car window tint in your vehicle, then you will need to purchase a cleaner that is ammonia-free. You cannot use ammonia on tinted windows. The plastics will also lose their blackness and start to become dull. Although it can be revived via a car plastic restorer, you still do not want to cause this sort of damage on purpose.

    Ammonia is dangerous if it is inhaled, therefore, being inside of your vehicle, in such a small space, you can end up endangering yourself when using this type of cleaning agent. Household cleaners contain ammonia, so try to avoid using any type of household cleaner for your vehicle windows.

    Streak Free Finish

    There are so many individuals who would prefer to use water to clean their windows, and even though it is a safe method, it is not considered the best method.

    Water does not have the ability to clean deeply to remove any bug remains, or even any tough spots that you are trying to remove. The best thing to do if you are only using water is to use a car drying towel to help and remove the difficult spots. When you are finished cleaning, make sure to turn the towel over to dry the window. This will prevent any streaks from forming, and give you a clear view through your windows.

    After you have applied the cleaner to your windows, it is prudent that you wipe the cleaner off promptly. This helps to reduce the build up of residue from the cleaner, and leave the windows clean with a streak free finish.

    car window cleaner

    Remove Grime and Avoid Hazing

    For perfect visibility from your car windows, is important that the auto glass cleaner is formulated to cut through grime and is an anti-hazing formula. Poor quality glass cleaners and car wash soap includes soap and other surfactants that cause the hazing/cloudiness on the windows. Using any of the recommendations will remove the hazing easily for perfect clarity.

    How Do To Clean Car Windows

    Cleaning your car windows is a difficult process without the correct product. When it comes time for you to clean your vehicle windows, there are a few tips that you can remember to help you accomplish this task, without having to deal with frustrating streaks afterwards while you are driving your car.

    The tips that you can follow to help you successfully clean your vehicle windows are:

    • Clean inside of your windshield while you are sitting in the passenger seat of your car. This will prevent steering wheel from getting in your way.
    • Keep your windows out of direct sunlight. When you are cleaning them in the sun, the heat from the sun will dry the cleaning agent on your windows.
    • Ensure you are using a high quality drying towel for cleaning the window.
    • Place the towel on the back of your hand, and use the back of your hand to clean the window. It will give you the right kind of pressure to clean the window, and it will help you to reach the corners of the window as well.
    • When you are cleaning the inside of your window, spray the microfiber towel first as this will prevent any type of over-spraying on the window. It also prevents any excess spray from getting on the dashboard of your vehicle as well.
    • Take your time cleaning. If you rush through, it is more than likely that you will end up leaving a mess of streaks while you are working too quickly.
    • Make sure to roll the windows down, so you can clean the tops of the windows.
    • If you use a traditional household cleaner, these have ammonia in them that can damage the lining that is on the glass. It is important to use a cleaning agent that was specifically designed for automotive glass.

    What To Avoid

    Its important that you take great care using a car window cleaner on glass because it will scratch, Just like the paintwork, if you use a rough applicator or use an incorrect technique, you will cause scratching. Simply spray the auto glass cleaner and wipe clear, its as simple as that.

    If you do notice that the car window is full of scratches, you can use a car glass polish on the windows to remove the fine scratches.

    Conclusion

    Auto glass cleaner is a product that is often forgotten as people will just assume that their car wash soap will do the job. However, this is not the case and once you have used a quality cleaner once, you will never go back. To conclude, the best advice to follow when it comes to purchasing a car glass cleaner include:

    • Choose a cleaner that is ammonia and alcohol free
    • Stay away from household cleaners
    • Find a cleaner that is specifically used for auto glass
    • Make sure that the cleaner is safe to use for our vehicle i.e. Tint Friendly

    There are so many different types of auto glass cleaners that can be found on the market, and they are all specifically designed to be able to take care of the dirt, grime, and bug remains that have built up over time. All of our recommendations will do a perfect job of improving clarity of your car windows and are available in several types to suit your personal preference of application.

    procarreviews author

    Written By Dan

    About the Author

    Dan is an automotive journalist and owner of over 10 cars ranging from supercars, tuned cars, classics and your good old beater cars. He always like to get his hands dirty with nut and bolt restorations or detailing sessions using the best products on the market.

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