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Window Cleaning Issues - Canvassing, pole systems, pricing, problems, etc.

Best Waterfed Pole for Residential Use?

Posted by zymotik (zymotik), 24 January 2004

I will be starting to clean residential properties soon with a wfp and wondered the best one to use? I had a Tucker pole system brochure this morning (looks expensive) and the clamps on the pole need a tool to undo and change the height. Would that be too slow for residential? What height will I need? I'm cleaning detached 4 bed houses, all close together on estates, with a DIY trolly system. The odd one has a big conservatory.

Thanks in advance guys!
Posted by stevekennedy (stevekennedy), 24 January 2004
I know someone who has been cleaning residential with a home made system. He splashed out a bit for his poles though and bought from OTT/Ionic. Found them quicker to put up and down, lightwieght and less whippy than the metal ones. I'm also going for Ionic's poles for these reasons. But I haven't used them myself yet.
Posted by zymotik (zymotik), 24 January 2004

Thanks Steve, that helps. Do you know exactly what pole it was that he used? They do four types I think, "Residential", "Glass Fibre", "Standard Carbon Fibre" and "Ergo-Lite Carbon Fibre".

Thanks again for your help. Ian
Posted by stevekennedy (stevekennedy), 24 January 2004
My friend is using the glass fibre ones.

When I did the demo I tried a 35ft carbon fibre. It was excellent. I'm getting a 25ft carbon pole, because it comes in 4ft sections. Easy to put up and down. I think this would be the most important issue if doing residential.

I tried a cheaper glass fibre pole from cleantech. The price was excellent, and the brush seemed good, but it was heavy and sections seemed about 61/2ft each. You had to extend it on the ground and then raise it. I found that a bit of a hassle. Their address is www.cleantech.co.uk . I gather that Peters poles are similar. www.window-tools.co.uk

I eliminated tucker due to their locking mechanism. Haven't tried omnipole, brodex, etc
Posted by STEVE71163 (Steve Lowe), 24 January 2004
I got a call today from a commercial job asking if i use poles because they specifically want it done the traditional way because it does a better job Huh This is not the first time i have heard this recently so i for one am going to hang on for a while yet Roll Eyes

Steve
Posted by stevekennedy (stevekennedy), 24 January 2004
Hi steve,

When informing my residential customers that I'm switching to pole cleaning a lot of them said that their workplace is being done with poles and that the windows are left spotted. I was alarmed until I stopped to think about it.

I'm sure the spotting is largely due to rushing the job. Being greedy and trying to make a lot of money. Unfortunately there's no free lunch.

We need to educate the customer. After all, we all know guys out there who use a squeegie and make a terrible mess Roll Eyes  If I went out and bought a hammer and chisel I wouldn't suddenly become a carpenter.

On commercials. I will still be offering a traditional service, but at a premium, as I will have to have the ladder footed or use some kind of mechinism to support the ladder which all takes time and money.

When I tried ionics system on windows not cleaned for over a year they came up perfect. I took my time and did a thorough job. Then tried an office. Same result!

I wouldn't give up on the pole yet Steve. Could save your life (and your knees   Wink )

SteveK

Posted by STEVE71163 (Steve Lowe), 24 January 2004
Hi Steve
           Thats interesting. Perhaps i should get a few demonstrations Huh  My Dad who is a window cleaner in Manchester is selling his wfp because he is quite disappointed with it. I am waiting to see how much he wants for it Grin  But he said that it definitely does not do it as good as conventional ways Roll Eyes Huh

Steve
Posted by STEVE71163 (Steve Lowe), 24 January 2004
Hi Steve
            What system did you get in the end Huh Are you going to use it for both domestic and commercial jobs Huh

Steve
Posted by stevekennedy (stevekennedy), 24 January 2004
Hi Steve

Sorry for delay in replying. Shame to hear about your dad's pole. Got me worried now  Undecided

I'm getting a system from Ionic. I've gone for a hot system. Maybe that'll make the difference  Huh

When I tried the system, we used a LOT of water! We were to we had to follow a strict procedure when cleaning. Top of frame first, (taking care to avoid the air vents), then sides of frame, rinse it off. Then clean the glass and final rinse. So I've gone for the full 1000 litres. We are gonna blast those windows with water  Cool We are also going to clean them twice the first time.

I have a friend whose been using a home made system for 3-4 months on his residential customers. 400 litre tank in an escort van. He says he gets good results, (he has not lost one customer or had one single complaint), but he notices that the windows clean better on warm days. He's hoping to add an inline heater to his system to overcome this.

I'm picking it up on friday. Will try it out from monday onwards. Hope it's not an expensive mistake  Undecided Only time will tell.


Posted by stevekennedy (stevekennedy), 24 January 2004
P.S.

Yes, we are hoping to push more for commercial work from now on.

Although I do enjoy cleaning houses much more. More appreciation from the customer, and loyalty.

SteveK
Posted by STEVE71163 (Steve Lowe), 24 January 2004
on 01/24/04 at 20:51:50, stevekennedy wrote:
Hi Steve

Sorry for delay in replying. Shame to hear about your dad's pole. Got me worried now Undecided




Steve
        I have got to say Steve that my Dad is a bit set in his ways these days so i dont take to much notice. About time he retired Grin Roll Eyes Grin

Steve

Posted by stevekennedy (stevekennedy), 24 January 2004
Grin I know a few friends who are just the same   Wink They'll take some convincing.

A couple of guys I know in Edinburgh are still using Chamois leathers for everything. They feel the squeegie doesn't do such a good job  Roll Eyes They have loads of very happy customers, and very tired arms  Grin
Posted by STEVE71163 (Steve Lowe), 24 January 2004
What size system have you opted for Steve Huh
Posted by STEVE71163 (Steve Lowe), 24 January 2004
Sorry mate just seen 1000 litres Embarassed
Posted by stevekennedy (stevekennedy), 24 January 2004
Went for the 1000 litre system because there are two of us most days. Guessing 400 litres probably enough for one person. I think that's the size tank my friend is using.
Posted by STEVE71163 (Steve Lowe), 24 January 2004
Hi Steve
           Does your mates take up all the room in an Escort van Huh I have got an escort van and have been trying to find out the size that would fit Huh

Steve
Posted by stevekennedy (stevekennedy), 24 January 2004
He told me about it when we were playing 5-aside. I should see him again this sunday. I'll ask him for the details.
Posted by sham33 (sham33), 24 January 2004
Is that the Thermal Pure system your buying  Huh How much did a system like that set u back  Huh
Posted by stevekennedy (stevekennedy), 24 January 2004
The thermopure system is 5 stage RO and costs 9995 + a van + poles

Not cheap, but I have always bought the best equipment and this system and pole combination is, in my opinion, the best available. It has the hot water, the lightest poles and little touches like being able to work and fill up at night with all the doors closed and locked.

Cost per working day is approx 23 for system+van and 1 per day for filters plus usual van running costs. I think it's worth it for the convenience.

My mate has spent about 700 i think  Cheesy. He's happy and so are his customers.
Posted by STEVE71163 (Steve Lowe), 25 January 2004
on 01/24/04 at 22:20:46, stevekennedy wrote:
He told me about it when we were playing 5-aside. I should see him again this sunday. I'll ask him for the details.


Thanks Steve
                    I would be really interested in how much room is left after the tank is installed Wink

Steve
Posted by WavieDavie (WavieDavie), 25 January 2004
The thermopure system is 5 stage RO and costs 9995 + a van + poles

Steve, are you in Aberdeen? Isn't the water soft enough to just use DI? 10K + van? (choke!)

Davie - a tight Scot who's grasping for his heart tablets !!

Posted by STEVE71163 (Steve Lowe), 25 January 2004
Hi Steve
           What size van have you fitted your 1000 litre system in Huh

Steve
Posted by stevekennedy (stevekennedy), 25 January 2004
Hi Steve,

It's in a Renault Master MWB. Had a test drive in one and it's a really nice van. Got a huge discount off it.

Hi Davie,

Ionic are making up a hybrid system for me because the pressure is terrible where I live and RO is no good. So I will be using 3 DI filters fitted in series. They took a little bit off the price because I didn't need the RO, but not that much. Living in Aberdeen, our water is 70 ppm. Not too bad. I'm waiting to see how much resin I go through.

My house has no drive or garage, so hoping to set-up a static system in another area of town to make pure water using RO, then quickly fill the van in the morning/evening. I'll only need 1 filter in the van to polish the water.
Posted by sean_rimmer (Dom Matrix aka BRODEX), 25 January 2004
Steve
if I am reading this right, you paid 10k for a thermopure, demin system off OTT, fitted in your van.
BRODEX price for the same kit is 3480 (out of our price list)
P.S We sell refillable resin carts when you get fed up paying over the odds.
Dom
Posted by stevekennedy (stevekennedy), 25 January 2004
Hi Dom,

I'm not saying what I paid, that's between me and Ionic.

Thanks for the offer of cheap resin though, I'll keep it in mind.

I wanted diesel inline heating and so chose the system from Ionic.

SteveK
Posted by wipe_clean (wipe_clean), 1 February 2004
WHAT WE HAVE TO REMEMBER ABOUT THE WFP IS THAT IT IS JUST ANOTHER TOOL AND NOT A MAGIC WAND AS SOME EMPLOYEES SEEM TO THINK.
IF IT IS NOT USED CORRECTLY AS WITH A SQUEEGY THE JOB WILL NOT GET DONE RIGHT.

WIP CLEAN


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