cleaning squeegee

Top 10 Free Window Cleaning Tips of The Month

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Tip #1
Get A Sea Sponge
A sea sponge can really be a window cleaners friend. Used dry, you can wipe up those wet sills and frames and even pre-cut your glass before squeegeeing. Just ring it out occasionally. Used wet, you can wash small french panes, sliding tracks and dirty frames. Even wipe your squeegee blade clean with this handy tool.

Tip #2
Stay Hydrated
It's amazing how easy it is, especially during the warmer months to get dehydrated while you're working. This can lead to extreme fatigue, fainting or disorientation and will lead to accidents for sure. Drink plenty of liquids and take frequent breaks during hot days.

Tip #3
Squeegee, then pause.
After a pass with the squeegee, pause for a second to let the accumulated water run off the squeegee blade. If you take the squeegee off the glass too quick you can pick up water and accidentally flick some back onto the clean glass.

Tip #4
Start with a short
width squeegee.
When learning how to clean windows using a new squeegee method, start with a short width channel. It's easier to control. Then work your way up to wider widths as your skill improves.

Tip #5
Small squeegee for
commercial sills.
When cleaning exterior commercial glass, keep a small squeegee on your belt and use it to remove excess water from the sills. This will save you on using too many towels throughout the day.

Tip #6
Use Ladder levellers.
Install a ladder leveller system on your ladder for when working on uneven ground. Make sure it is functioning properly prior to climbing up the ladder.

Tip #7
Get help moving obstacles.
It's usually best to have obstacles removed from in front of the windows prior to your arrival, however sometimes this can't be helped. If you do need to move furniture, window blinds/drapes or knick knacks from the sills, get the customer or another worker to assist you. Nothing is worse than trying to get access to a window in order to clean it and you end up breaking something or injuring yourself.

Tip #8
Network with other local window cleaners.
You never know when you can use the help from other window cleaners/businesses. You can send work back and forth depending on your specialities, sub-contract out work in order to bid on larger projects, borrow specialised equipment, etc.

Tip #9
Use internet sources
for help.
I recommend anyone who is a window cleaner, owns a cleaning business or is thinking of getting into the industry to join a professional window cleaning forum on the internet. I highly recommend membership is free.

Tip #10
Soap, easy does it.
A big mistake I see many new window cleaners do is use too much soap in their bucket. It doesn't matter if you're using dish soap or professional window cleaning detergent. Less is more, as they say. In fact, too much soap takes more time to detail, causes the glass to dry out faster and is more likely to leave a film on the glass.

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Window Washing Tips From The Past

Water First, Soap Second.
You know I still see many people squirt some soap into a bucket then fill their bucket with water causing the development of useless suds. What you need to do is fill your bucket of water first (2-3 gallons) then give a couple of good squirts of your favourite soap. Gently mix the soap around until you feel your solution is slippery when you rub your fingers together. Having all your suds on top of the water does nothing for your cleaning efforts.

White Scrub Pads
Vrs Green
Many people are used to using those green scrub pads when cleaning the dishes so obviously they think they can use it on their windows for stubborn dirt/stains. WRONG! Green scrub pads will scratch glass. Instead, seek out the white scrub pads from your local Janitorial shop. They are better suited to glass and will not scratch the surface.

Scrape & Lift In
One Direction
When scraping glass surfaces, scrape in one direction only. At the end of each stroke, lift the razor off the glass surface then start the next section. If you scrape back and forth, debris may get trapped under the blade and drag across the glass causing scratches.

Move With The Wind
This one's pretty straight forward, I should think! On windy days, plan to clean the windows in order from where the wind is blowing from and move along in the same direction from window to window. This will ensure that the wind doesn't blow your cleaning solution back onto glass you've already cleaned.

Winter Cleaning Solution
Cleaning windows below freezing is quite doable. Many window cleaners use winter rated windshield washer fluid and add it to their regular solution. How much you'll need is dependant on temperature outside, windchill factor and how warm the room is on the other side of the glass. Others in the trade use methanol (alcohol). It's best to use cold water when adding alcohol to your mix. If you use warm or hot water, the alcohol will evaporate quicker.

Proper Ladder Angle
When using any kind of ladder that will be leaning up against a wall, make sure you have it placed at a 4:1 ratio. This means that for every 4 ft. up your ladder is, it should be pulled out from the wall by 1 ft. (another example: 16 ft. up = 4 ft. out)

Shoe Covers Make
A Good Impression
It may seem like a small thing but if you wear disposable shoe covers over your shoes, you will prevent dirt from tracking through the house while also being comfortable at the same time. I know I don't want to step on some kids LEGO piece while walking around someones house so I like to keep my shoes on. The customers will also see this (shoe covers) as a sign of professionalism.

Paint Opener Tool
Some window screens need to be removed from the outside of the house and depending on how they are fixed, you may need a special tool to remove them. I've found that a basic paint can opener works well in many situations.

Beware Of Booby Trapped Windows & Screens
Okay I don't really mean for this to sound comical but it's true, sometimes you will feel like you're dealing with booby traps when it comes to operating peoples windows. Most often it is because handles and pull tabs are made of cheap plastic that get brittle and break quite often, especially on window screens. Look for ways for you to assist the window or screen when operating them rather than just pulling at the tabs.

Carry A Multi-bit
You just never know when you are going to have to unscrew something in order to release a sliding window or door. Make sure you have a multi-bit screwdriver close at hand. The flat bit can also come it handy to pry things open, just be careful.

Add Life To Your
Squeegee Rubbers
Usually the first area of the rubber that gets worn out are the ends (corners). Rather than throwing away the rubber at this point, just cut the worn ends off and use it on a smaller squeegee channel.

Spray Bottle On Your Belt
Get a spray bottle with your cleaning solution and use a bottle holder attachment on your tool belt. Now, instead of lugging your window cleaning bucket everywhere in a customers home/commercial space, just go with your spray bottle and wet your strip washer or spray directly onto the glass. Saves multiple trips back and forth to your bucket.

Custom Cut Channels
When giving an estimate for a property that has a lot of french panes (small window panes grouped together), measure the width of the glass panes. If you land the job ,it might be a good idea to custom cut a squeegee channel to the same width of the glass panes. That way you'll only need to do one squeegee pull per pane.

Pre-cutting Windows
After scrubbing the entire area of the glass, pre-cut the top and side edges of the glass using a clean lint-free cloth, sea sponge or tip of your squeegee rubber. It cuts down considerably on the amount of detailing needed afterwards.

Paper Towel On
Sliding Tracks
You can try to brush out debris from sliding tracks, even vacuuming them helps but you will often still have debris trapped in the corners. Simply spray your window cleaning solution into those stubborn corners and use paper towel to mop up the water and dirt. Paper towels generally work better than cloths for this task.

Buy A Swivel Handle Scrubber
Using a window cleaning scrubber with a swivel handle allows you to reach awkward angles and make sure the entire glass gets soaked. They're also handy when cleaning glass that goes right down to the ground because the swivel action will save you from bending over too much or crouching down.

Buy A Swivel Squeegee Handle
Swivel squeegee handles are an excellent choice for cleaning high windows at awkward angles. Sometimes a tree, bush or other obstacle forces you to use an extension pole at an angle and a swivel handle can be adjusted to meet that angle so you can flawlessly squeegee the glass.

Follow The Shade
Before arriving at the job site, try to plan out which side of the building/house you'll start on based on where the shaded area will be. Although you can clean glass in direct sunlight, it can be quite challenging at times and you may end up with some unwanted streaks depending on your skill level.

Pre-brush Basement Windows
Basement windows are usually trashed because of landscapers and home owners allowing grass clippings and dirt to hit the windows coming from lawn mowers. Always pre-brush these windows prior to scrubbing or your window cleaning bucket solution will get soiled rather quickly.

Switch Hands
With Your Squeegee
Practice cleaning windows with both your right and left hand. You never know when you might be able to save time on a ladder when you can reach the glass on both the left right side of the ladder. Saves you from having to move the ladder too often.

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