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

wfp nightmare day.

Posted by brownie (brownie), 19 February 2004
got up this morning bright sunshine all day.lovely day to clean windows.just got wfp system 2mnths ago and was doing big detatched houses for 2nd time with system.(first clean was nightmare,but i told them that.)
finished 2 houses in 25 mins,sunshine glaring on windows.went back to check results and they dried quickly.they were awful and spotty,could not belive it.did them again and they still dried spotty.
we have had a layer of sand on windows lately and wondering if sand is still in brush head?
i have tried rinsing but they just bead.
tds meter reads 000 so thats ok.
will it take time? cause ive slowed down with my work and earnings
cause im forever gong back to correct them.
i was that cheesed off that i went back 2 squeegy in afternoon and not a problem.
can somebody please advise me and try to convince me that it takes time.
im on a home made system which is fine and brodex brushes.
sorry for long msg.
Posted by easycleanwindows (easycleanwindows), 19 February 2004
Hello my friend.

Me and my business partner done a house today with w.f.p by hand inside it took 6 hours 2 hours outside with both hoses going not one spot on the glass except where the brush head touched the masonary.The ways in which spots are left.

1. Are you rinsing off or sheeting the water once cleaned.

2.even though your tdi meter reads 0 (it can go upto 30 by the way) are your batterys working ok?

even though you tell your customers about the first clean its not allways the case.As long as you rinse propperly after you brushed you should never get any spots at all even though you may have been told.

We clean large amounts of large houses and commercial buildings upto 80feet and have neve had one complaint and have been servicing these for the last twelve months,
After the house we done today and the finished job we picked up another 5 customers totaling over 400.00 .

wfp poles do work dont be put off and practice makes perfect.

Posted by brownie (brownie), 19 February 2004
cheers for the reply.
mt tds meter is working fine cause its 002 b4 it goes through the polisher and 000 after.
i find that when i rinse off ,there are some windows that it beads off and doesnt properly rinse and some that it sheets down but still leaves spotting or drip marks.
ive tried reading up on what the water does to the glass and they say the water dissolves dirt and dries streak and spot that case then why not use just pure water and a squeegy and therefore do not do any detailing round the edges because it says it should dry streak free.
because as we all know detailing is the most time consuming bit.
im still not convinced but will persist for 3rd clean.
does it eventually put a film on the glass?

is the spotting years of detergent coming out of seals or off glass?
ive found that the results are worse on wooden that the case with you?
Posted by Old_Master (Old_Master), 20 February 2004
To answer your questions
1) You can use a squeegee with no detergent just pure water- this works particularly well on internal windows offices- As there is no smoking these days- also its much faster.

2) The reason you get problems on mostly on wooden windows is likly to be that the paintwork is becoming powdery so when you wash the windows the water droplets are contaminated with chalky residue from the frames. It is also correct that the old detergent needs removing throughly. Also the water droplets sometimes run down bring dirt from the putty on wooden windows.
We always totaly wash the frames thoroughly on a first clean somtimes cleaning them as much as three times. I tell our window cleaners to spend as long on them the first clean as  they would if they were working from a ladder using squeegees. This usually ensures the next visit is done perfectly in a quarter of the time.
Posted by james44 (james44), 20 February 2004
old-master (you can use a squeegee and pure water inside) how do you do this, sorry but new to all this pole work.
Posted by Old_Master (Old_Master), 20 February 2004
Have an applicator dedicated for pure water so its not contaminated with detergent and a bucket of pure water. The best way is using a Wagtail combi squeegee (Im not just saying that because we sell them)
The wagtail combi applicator seems to hold just the right amount of water.
The only time it is difficult is on very hot days when the water dries very quickly.
It takes a bit of practice but some window cleaners swear by it.
Posted by Diamond_Vision (Jeff Brimble), 20 February 2004
Maybe if you have sand on the glass you also have sea salt which although I am 20 miles from the sea with the northerly squalls of 3 weeks ago has dirtied all my customers windows.
You will also get a problem with fine dust in the summer , I know you are doing them again but what is your water flow rate per min.
Try cleaning them v. quickly do a few  windows then go back bang the brushh on each pane,a few times to loosen contaminents and do them again, then spray them with water holding the brush off the glass. The problems are most with the glass that beads the dirt is concentrated in each droplet. You will not get this problem normally just after bad weather.
Go to a pane on your own house that beads or find some glass that does, downstairs. clean it properly with a squeegee then when its totally clean just spray some water on the glass and check the resulys when dry ( this may take overnight this damp weathe This will prove to you that its the brush thats contaminated with dirt not the system thats at fault- do it !
Keep persevering you and your customers have a long learning process.
Posted by brownie (brownie), 21 February 2004
thanks for the advice jeff,i think u hav solved my problems,i hope.
for one ,the first clean i did on the houses i did the frames and all the years of dirt,then the windows and told them they would be the second time round i notice black dots on the frames,but hav left them and just keep on glass,
i hav 2 spend more time on the frames at first because i proberly hav not done them good enough.
i think i expected to be faster and earn more stright away,but thats not the case for the first few months.
im only on monthly cleans so im expecting too much 2 soon.
i did the test that u said on the windows and the water has dried spot free which is good and the brush is fine.
at the end of the day i havnt done a good enough job on the frames first time and probably been rushing the job to justify the system.
i think slow and a good job at first will do it right,then it will be better in the long run.
p.s.  ....the sandstorm up north was horrendous,one street thought it was my system.had to tell them.

thanks again for the advice jeff
Posted by brownie (brownie), 21 February 2004
sorry....forgot to ask what should be my flow rate.
should i blast the frames on first clean or use a steady flow all the time ?.....cheers
Posted by Diamond_Vision (Jeff Brimble), 21 February 2004
Glad you said FLOW rate everyone talks about pressure
You need enough water to gently flood the glass - no more or less. I have 4 nozzles on my diy brush that just spray a little thro the brush to reach the glass. If you have one, then the extremties of the brush may get dirty.
Personally I dont go to near the frames especially at the top. On long window panes (top to bottom) sometimes the dirty water only floods half way down the glass then dries there so you may need to treat the long panes as 2 windows.
Nice to find someone who is taking the info on board !
Good luck
ps ocassionally I will invert the brush and clean a bit of glass  this rinses the brush, I also have a v.stiff brush and use it like a shoe brush to flik flaky paint and dirt off.
Posted by Old_Master (Old_Master), 21 February 2004
We find a litre per minute is ideal, for windows and frames. If they are realy dirty use a two litres per minute.

Posted by brownie (brownie), 22 February 2004
good to see the advice, but a little bit confused cauz the point of wfp is that it cleans the frames as well as the windows,which custumers like......but quote me wrong, but if you say you dont go near the top of the frames then, not were all the spiders webs and nests and years of dirt if u do not touch the tops of the frames then the custumers do not see the difference because there is no dirt on the sides or bottoms is there.
either you should go all the way and do the top, which we all know are somtimes minging,.....or stay clear......which is the norm?........i would like to know cauz some of my upvc are full of crap at the top. and im talkin years of dirt.....what do you do? you do them once then do the glass next time or do the frames again.
like jeff said he does his first clean 3 times or more the first time then it is right the next time.,...........wat do other people think............because i have rushed my first clean and the second is still crap and the custumers are not impressed with my new gadget.........even though i have bin with them 9 years and they all know me well.......they say it was better the way you did them before.........i belive it does take time but if someone charged me 6 to do my windows and they were shite i would not pay them ,so i can see were they are cumin from.....i have a compact round in a village and know everyone and would love to give them all the first clean free with my new system,but i can not afford to do that......the same as people cannot afford 6 for a job that is not done right........apart from(which i have done ,bear with me for first clean,wat can u do?)

open to ideas,thanks brownie...
Posted by replacement (Justin R), 22 February 2004
Got to say i brougth an OmiTrolley & pole the other day and its wicked i have not had the problems you seem to have here.

I was worried about spotting etc etc but i gave the windows an massive clean with the pole/brush taking along time on them starting on the frames then onto the windows, i then followed this though with an good rinse and and everything was great the customer moaned about one window with spotting which he said had not been cleaned for like years. So i went up with him and found the window was spotting but inside not outside, tried to sell him my inside cleaning service but his thinking about that anyway thats another day.

Mind you i took nearly 30-40 mins to do one house but that time invested on the first wash is going to put me in good stead, plus i blasted the windows with water used just over 50 litre's for the 1st clean but the customer is over the moon and so am i.

I did the exactly the same on the 2nd house and got the same result well nearly the same as the windows where wooden and the paint was flaking off but with the main rinse i gave it it took away the flaking paint and the custom was over the moon there as well also picked up 3 NEW jobs on that clean Cheesy

What i found is spend some time on the 1st clean with plenty of water and your not get any problems, worked for me Cheesy


Posted by Diamond_Vision (Jeff Brimble), 22 February 2004
Dont try to put it onto all your customers in one go, pick one or two in a street and gradually build up. the cobwebs dont stick to a wet brush or water or wet glass so its great for removing them.
I live in a rural village with very old fashioned customers !
Once you have started with the pole resist the temptation to go back to using ladders you have to be strong and not let the customer dictate how you clean the windows do the best you can and just wait to see if you loose them.
Posted by stevekennedy (stevekennedy), 22 February 2004
Hi justin,

How are you gettin on with the omnitrolley? I am considering buying a trolley and am still deciding between the different ones available. Did you try a few out first?

Posted by replacement (Justin R), 22 February 2004
Hi Steve the only problem i have had with the trolley is transport as i use an car atm, its abit of a pain getting it into and out the car but it really does look the part when you turn up @ a clean.

I have made myself a little ramp with two planks to get it in and out the car which has help in an big way, but once i get that van the planks will go and it will be easy then.

Hope that helps.


Posted by choice.clean (choice.clean), 29 March 2004
one very important point i discovered after 2 years with waterfed system Meths it helps you cope when you first buy one Tongue no seriously if the customer has put meths in his water its an old trick to get a shine on the glass the oild will be almost impossible to remove with the wfp what i do is use an applicator to remove the oil form the surface with detergent. and then wash like crazy with the purified water until all of the foaming disappears.
you will know if you hit meths because the water will move around like a well polished car i.e. it looks greasy. unlike the waterproofed glass or self cleaning glass that just sheds the water. i hope this helps you all. always check too if customers are using anything between visits i find that the kitchen window is particularly susceptible to people wipin over between visits on of my custopmers was dashing out with a vinegar soaked cloth between visits and creating problems
Posted by stevekennedy (stevekennedy), 29 March 2004
Very interesting. I wonder if windowlene spray (not the cream stuff) contains meths or something similar? I have some customers who clean the windows in between. I have tried to deter them in the past because I found they didn't blade well after. But, you know how they can be...  Roll Eyes

Now I'm using the pole it could be a nightmare

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