How to Clean Up Broken Glass Safely

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Accidents happen; sometimes, they involve a million shards of broken glass, which can be a nightmare to clean. It can be shattered windowpanes, drinking glasses, or a pile of dishes crashing onto your hardwood floors. While it can be tempting to sweep it under the rug (figuratively, of course!), you should always do this home cleaning task as efficiently as possible to avoid injuring yourself in the process or other members of your household if they unknowingly step on a tiny piece of glass left behind. In this article, we share a guide on how to clean up broken glass in the safest way to help you navigate every delicate situation.

Safety First

  • Clear the area: Before you tackle the mess, ensure everyone, especially children and pets, is safely out of the way.
  • Gear up: Protect yourself by wearing thick gloves, preferably work gloves or oven mitts. Closed-toe shoes are also essential.

Cleaning Broken Glass: A Step-by-Step

Take care of the larger chunks of glass shards first:

  • Use a broom and carefully sweep them into a dustpan.
  • You can also use a sturdy piece of cardboard to scoop clusters of glass on different surfaces, 
  • After removing the bulk of the glass, scan for any remaining tiny shards with a flashlight or your mobile phone’s backlight. Inspect the floors as far as 10 feet away for more pieces of glass that may have flown away upon impact. 

For smaller shards, please do not attempt to pick them up with your bare hands. Instead, try these different cleaning methods:

  • Damp paper towels: Fold several paper towels, wet them slightly, and press them onto the glass. The moisture will help the shards stick, allowing for safe disposal.
  • Bread: Believe it or not, bread can surprisingly effectively clean up minuscule pieces of broken glass. Press a slice of bread onto the glass shards, and they’ll readily adhere to the soft crumb.
  • Tape or lint roller: A masking tape or lint roller can also be an excellent tool for picking up tiny, elusive pieces of glass on different surfaces. 
  • Vacuum: You can use a vacuum cleaner to clean up tiny pieces of broken glass from carpets or upholstered surfaces. However, remember that you can’t use just any vacuum unit for this. See the do’s and don’ts section below for detailed instructions.

Proper Disposal 

  • Double bag it: Place the collected glass in a sturdy plastic bag, then seal it inside another bag before disposing it in your outdoor trash bin.

More Do’s and Don’ts When Cleaning Up Broken Glass At Home 

  • Only use a high-powered, hose-free, handheld vacuum cleaner designed for debris like glass. Do not do it if you have a regular bagged or bagless unit because sharp objects can puncture and damage its filters and wirings inside.
  • Avoid using conventional cleaning tools like sponges or mops, as they can trap tiny shards, risking cuts and other injuries. 
  • If dealing with extensive breakage, like large panes of glass windows or doors, consider seeking professional help for safe and thorough cleanup.

Following these practical cleaning tips can help you clean up one of the most common household messes while prioritizing your and your family’s safety. Follow our blog for more expert cleaning tutorials from the best maid services in Milwaukee!

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