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5 Methods to Fix Scratched Glass (with Pictures)

Glass Window Scratch

Scratched glass is the visual equivalent to nails on a chalkboard. Scratches appear as if out of nowhere—often with their sources unknown—causing an annoying eyesore on windows, mirrors, glass doors, and other surfaces intended to be crystal clear and see-through. Luckily, there are some simple DIY tricks to repair scratched glass using materials you either already have on hand, or that are easy to pick up at your local store.

It should be noted, however, the following DIY tips and tricks are best applied for removing surface scratches only. For anything deeper—as in any grooves in the glass that your fingernail can fit into—we recommend consulting a professional glazier or glass repair service to help you fix or even replace the glass. For anything more surface-level, we’ve got you covered with five simple methods for removing scratches—each further simplified to five easy-to-follow steps.

divider 5Before You Start

Before starting any of the methods below, an important first step is to first clean the glass by wiping the surface with glass cleaner. Not only will a clean glass surface allow you to see damages much more clearly, but you will remove any loose particles that may scuff up the glass even more in the process of removing the scratches. Don’t worry, we’ll include this in the steps below to remind you.

Also, make sure to always work on an equally clean and stable surface to avoid any mishaps that may damage your glass even more while you work.

crack on window glass
Image Credit: Lina Mo, Shutterstock

The 5 Methods to Fix Scratched Glass

1. The Toothpaste Method

Toothpaste
Image Credit: Pixabay

Back in the days of CDs and DVDs, the toothpaste trick worked wonders on removing annoying scratches and un-skipping your favorite songs and movies. The same method can be applied for removing scratches from glass surfaces in the following easy steps, which can be repeated as many times as needed.

Materials needed:
  • Glass cleaner
  • Plain white toothpaste (opt for the non-gel kind), preferably containing baking soda
  • A couple of soft, clean rags, preferably microfiber towels
Directions:
  • Clean the surface of the glass with glass cleaner and let it fully dry.
  • Lightly dampen a corner of a rag/towel with water.
  • Apply a small dab of toothpaste onto the damp rag.
  • In circular motions, use the damp rag to rub the toothpaste onto the scratched surface for about 30 seconds while applying a bit of pressure.
  • Use the other clean/dry rag to wipe away any excess toothpaste and clean the surface to inspect for any residual scratches.

2. The Nail Polish Method  

Nail Polish
Image Credit: Pixabay

Good for more than a glossy topcoat for manicures, clear nail polish surprisingly also packs potent ingredients that can hide and even diminish defects and scratches on glass surfaces without further damaging it.

Materials needed:
  • Glass cleaner
  • Clear nail polish
  • Nail polish remover
  • A couple soft, clean rags, preferably microfiber towels
Directions:
  • Clean the surface of the glass with glass cleaner and let it fully dry.
  • Apply a thin layer of clear nail polish over the scratched area using the applicator brush.
  • Let the nail polish dry for at least one hour.
  • Once the nail polish is fully dried, lightly dampen a rag or towel with the nail polish remover.
  • Use the dampened corner of the rag to wipe the surface, removing any excess nail polish outside of the scratch itself and cleaning the surface to inspect for any residual scratches.

 


3. The Baking Soda Method 

baking soda paste
Photo by Monfocus on Pixabay

A little-known DIY home improvement hack is that you can make your own version of glass polish using just water and baking soda—a perfect solution that requires nothing more than what’s already in your kitchen.

Materials needed:
  • Glass cleaner
  • Baking soda
  • Water
  • A bowl
  • A couple of soft, clean rags, preferably microfiber towels
Directions:
  • Clean the surface of the glass with glass cleaner and let it fully dry.
  • Mix equal parts baking soda and water in a bowl (for example: 2 tablespoons of baking soda + 2 tablespoons of water, adjusting more or less for how much you need).
  • Stir the mixture together until you get a paste-like consistency.
  • Use a rag or towel to apply the baking soda paste to the scratched surface, rubbing in a circular motion.
  • Use a clean rag or towel to wipe away the baking soda residue with water, cleaning off the surface to inspect for any residual scratches.

4. The Glass Polish Methods

woman cleaning glass window
Image Credit: Khaligo, Pixabay

If you prefer an actual product over a home-made glass polish, this method is for you. This is also a good back up option in case your scratched glass still needs some more attention after trying other DIY methods. The good news is you can still do this method at home with the glass polish product of your choice and the other materials needed.

Materials needed:
  • Glass cleaner
  • Glass polish—Be sure to choose one that contains cerium oxide (many come as a powder that needs to be mixed with water)
  • A couple of microfiber towels
Directions:
  • Clean the surface of the glass with glass cleaner and let it fully dry.
  • Prepare the glass polish for use. If using a powder form, carefully follow the instructions on the label to apply water and create the glass polisher mixture to be applied.
  • Using the rag or towel, apply the glass polish to the scratched surface in a circular motion, carefully following the directions on the label. *Note: this step can also be done using a buffing pad and polishing tool if you can get your hands on these items. Otherwise, using a rag or towel by hand will work just fine.
  • Be careful not to apply too much glass polish and to regularly wipe away any excess powder build-up, as this may cause new scratches while you work.
  • When finished applying the glass polish, dampen the clean rag or towel and wipe away any residue to clean the surface and inspect for any residual scratches.
  • The Metal Polish Method

Although it’s self-explanatory that metal polish is designed to polish metal, it can also be used to remove scratches on glass using the following steps. Like with glass polish, there are several metal polish products you can easily find at your local home improvement or hardware store.

Materials needed:
  • Glass cleaner
  • Metal polish
  • A couple of microfiber towels
Directions:
  • Clean the surface of the glass with glass cleaner and let it fully dry.
  • Apply a small amount of metal polish to a rag or towel, being careful not to apply too much as this may cause more harm than good to the surface.
  • Using the rag or towel, rub the metal polish into the scratched surface in a circular motion, carefully following the directions on the label.
  • Regularly wipe away any excess build-up as you work.
  • When finished applying the metal polish, dampen a clean rag or towel and wipe away any residue to clean the surface and inspect for any residual scratches.

divider 5Conclusion

Whether minor surface-level scratches or deeper gouges that are closer to being full-on cracks, scratches on glass surfaces are unsightly and bothersome and they’ve got to go. After all, removing scratches on glass is something you want to take care of sooner than later to prevent them from worsening.

For any of the five methods we’ve detailed above, all you’ll need are the necessary materials, a little elbow grease, some time, patience, and perhaps a few practice tries on a different surface to start. We hope that any one of these methods will help you restore your scratched glass to a like-new, glistening, and glamorous appearance.


Featured Image Credit: Piqsels

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