5 Tips for Cleaning Broken Glass

Jeanne Sager

Flickr photo by davetoaster
I love getting packages so much the UPS man and I are on a first name very innocent flirtation basis.

The best part of the process is ripping off the tape and throwing open the box so you can dive into the goodies!

Which all came to a screeching halt this week when I realized the piece I was holding in my hand was a giant shard of broken glass.


The folks who packed my cute new apothecary jars for organizing our bathroom hadn't done a very good job of packing -- they'd wrapped a clear (acrylic) shelf I'd purchased in bubble wrap, then stuck the two glass jars in side the double shelf . . . which no bubbles 'round the glass.

Needless to say, the goodies I'd just pulled out of the box to drool over were now a mid-living room hazard.

After shooing my daughter out of the room, I started the glass clean up routine:

1. Get a paper bag and remove all the big shards by hand. Removing the larger shards before you come in with a broom or vacuum keeps them from breaking down further in the clean up process and creating a bigger mess. The paper bag will also help to contain the glass -- so you don't end up having to clean up another mess when you're taking your plastic garbage bags to the curb.

2. Pull out the vacuum and hit the perimeter. To ensure nothing is tracked through the house, I always hit the perimeter of the room first and work my way into the center of the disaster. I prefer the vacuum for this process because the little shards tend to be missed by the broom bristles.

3. Vacuum or sweep the main disaster area. Get up everything you can see -- then empty your dustpan or vacuum bag into the paper bag.

4. Dampen a rag and run it over the spot where the worst of the glass was. The wetness will help grab the little slivers -- make sure you use a thick rag or put on gloves if it's on the thin side.

5. Follow up with cotton balls. Especially good for wood floors with seams, the cotton balls will grab every last bit the rag didn't.

Do you have any glass clean up tips?

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