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Thread: Window cleaning

  1. #16
    Senior Member djkgrounds's Avatar
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    Default Re: Window cleaning

    Thanks for the tips David, wouldn't have thought about carpets getting stained,
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  2. #17
    Senior Member glassngrass's Avatar
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    Default Re: Window cleaning

    I should add - get yourself a cheap cobweb brush. Use this outside as you take the screens off, also to brush the dust off the sill.
    You don't want your beautifully cleaned windows to provide best view of cobwebs left behind around the window and under the eaves.

    When quoting - don't specify only 'window cleaning' - refer also to de-cob-webbing, also brushing screens and sills. Bring to attention any perceived difficulties eg. obstacles mentioned in last post)
    Heights - I recommend you avoid ladders like the plague. Get an extension pole and keep both feet on the ground. Add a little for the additional skill required for pole-work.

    If you are earning the equivalent of $150 for 4-5 hours work then you are either way too slow, or have under-quoted.
    At speed, a professional should be able to earn $150 in one and half or two hours.

    Remember the size of window is less an issue than the number of windows. The bit in the middle of a pane is easy - it's the edges and bottom where the main 'difficulty' is and skill is required.
    How many panes in a window? Anything from one to six, to perhaps 20 tiny squares on some.
    Quote by PANE, not window. Those tiny squares wont fit either your washer or squeegee and will require a sponge to wash, and a dry cloth to dry.
    Suggest you quote doors and windows with tiny squares separately.

    These two sites might assist you with an ideal beginners kit.
    http://www.wwwcleaningsupplies.com.au/
    http://windowcleaningonline.rtrk.com.au/

    Etore are considered by some as the Rolls-Royce of equipment. I disagree.
    Sorbo is an excellent brand - and their tools were my main.
    Consider also http://www.wagtail.com.au/ for their pivot head combo washer/squeegie in one. Once skilled at it's use, this can speed things up significantly.
    While the tool is excellent, you will need to use their rubbers, which I found a hard rubber. While they last a long time, it results in it not molding the edges as well and leaving more water behind.

    Be sure not to get squeegees or washer bars longer than your bucket - or they won't fit in it....
    I suggest 14" or 16" T-Bar washer also squeegee and bucket.

    Thinking of getting a scraper? This can be fraught with hazards. After use the blade should be disposed of. Rust you can't see can leave scratches you can see.
    Always a new blade for each job - so get a cheap scraper with blades from your $2 shop and replace the blade between jobs.
    Scraping is not washing - charge double for any window requiring scraping (silicone, paint, lacquer)
    Research further - some little specs are result of the glass manufacturing process. You should NOT be scraping these off. Not only may you leave a blemish worse than what you took off, glass is as hard as steel. If you continue to use a blade that is damaged, then you will scratch the glass.

    We think of window cleaning as washing - the client may view it as 'whatever is necessary to leave a clear and unimpeded view'
    Be certain to clarify WHAT you are agreeing to do.

    I recommend that until you get significant experience and have full liability insurance that covers window cleaning activities, you avoid builder's cleans.
    Some of the hazards there include - builder taking the protective cover off windows/sliding doors too soon, and mortar/plaster/paint getting on them.
    Mortar is a buggar. They may not pay if you dont take this off (by scraping), and then want YOU to pay to replace damaged glass.
    I would avoid builders - period.

    Finally - some newer glass and some window tints are 'allergic' to many cleaning solutions and can be badly damaged by them - even Morning Fresh.
    You need to know what glass and tints to avoid.
    I know one newer window cleaner was 'tricked' into cleaning when the owner knew they needed special treatment and that the cleaner didn't.
    It cost him thousands.
    That said - in six years of domestic and commercial window cleaning, I didnt come across any of these types of windows or tints. But you should be aware they exist and ASK the client if there is any special treatment required - throw the burden back on them to disclose before you accept.

    There are other threads dealing with this subject that may also assist.

    Hope this is of help.
    David
    Mr Sparkle Car Spa

  3. #18
    Senior Member imoww's Avatar
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    Default Re: Window cleaning

    i got this info off service seek.

    How much does it cost to hire Professional Window Cleaners?

    Window Cleaners cost between $25 per hour to $250 per hour. If your house has easy access and window cleaners don't need specialised equipment, you can expect the hourly rate to be closer to $25. If you require window cleaners to clean a highrise building, the price rises and it can get pretty expensive too! An average window cleaner will charge over $25 per hour so keep that in mind when calculating your budget.
    Everything looks good with a haircut.... ɐuıɥɔ ɯoɹɟ pɹɐoqʎǝʞ ɐ ʎnq ı ǝɯıʇ ʇsɐl ǝɥʇ sʇɐɥʇ

  4. #19
    Senior Member glassngrass's Avatar
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    Default Re: Window cleaning

    Quote Originally Posted by imoww View Post
    i got this info off service seek.

    How much does it cost to hire Professional Window Cleaners?

    Window Cleaners cost between $25 per hour to $250 per hour. If your house has easy access and window cleaners don't need specialised equipment, you can expect the hourly rate to be closer to $25. If you require window cleaners to clean a highrise building, the price rises and it can get pretty expensive too! An average window cleaner will charge over $25 per hour so keep that in mind when calculating your budget.
    Service Seek - for clients that want to pay 'contractors' less than casual wages (and contractors who believe that is all they deserve)
    Even base wages today are generally more than $25/hour - add superannuation, paid annual and long service leave, no risk to employee and no overheads.
    David
    Mr Sparkle Car Spa

  5. #20
    Senior Member imoww's Avatar
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    Default Re: Window cleaning

    fair enough on the seek site.
    so what is the current rate a window cleaner charges?
    Everything looks good with a haircut.... ɐuıɥɔ ɯoɹɟ pɹɐoqʎǝʞ ɐ ʎnq ı ǝɯıʇ ʇsɐl ǝɥʇ sʇɐɥʇ

  6. #21
    Senior Member BSD's Avatar
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    Default Re: Window cleaning

    Excellent reply's here. take a bow,

  7. #22
    Senior Member glassngrass's Avatar
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    Default Re: Window cleaning

    Quote Originally Posted by imoww View Post
    fair enough on the seek site.
    so what is the current rate a window cleaner charges?
    I recommend you quote by the job - never an hourly rate. You will be hard pressed to find one that charges an hourly rate.
    Sure, review your quotes to see if you are earning the hourly rate you want and adjust accordingly - but quote for the job.
    Remember too, the jobs that take you an hour now, might take half that later. You will be hard pressed doubling an hourly rate - so focus on value for completed job at agreed cost.

    You might start at $2.50 per pane per face - then make adjustments for difficulty, plus, say, 50 cents per screen, and another 50 cents or dollar for any that require pole work.
    At this rate, a 40 pane house inside and out with 20 screens brushed and 5 panes needing pole work would quote at
    40 x $2.50 = $100
    40 x $2.50 = $100
    20 x $0.50 = $10
    5 x $1.00 = $5
    Total = $215 - but you will soon get to know the market of your local area and what people are prepared to pay.

    ... and this might take three and half hours first time, and two and half next

    I would never discount for inside and out as opposed to outside only. Doing both sides requires more work as just one side leaves an allowance for somethings left behind being 'invisible'.

    Window cleaning can be an excellent way to even out slow cash flow in dry months. Commercial/shops are a winner. these are often outside weekly. You can do these early before your first mow, and in summer, before the hot sun hits the glass (but you might curse the cold when your wet hands freeze in winter.....)
    David
    Mr Sparkle Car Spa

  8. #23
    Member of forum Woodchip's Avatar
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    Default Re: Window cleaning

    Good post g'n'g. In the example of the bloke doing 4-5hrs for $150, I agree its not good pay, he was there to clean the tracks(as I know the REagents here pick up on that), he kinda threw the window cleaning in "while he was there" sort of thing, so it looked like he'd actually done something.
    Did/do you clean the tracks as all part of window cleaning, or would that be different?
    cheers
    Cert' II & Cert' III Arboriculture
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    www.bluewatermaintenance.com.au

  9. #24
    Senior Member glassngrass's Avatar
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    Default Re: Window cleaning

    Quote Originally Posted by Woodchip View Post
    Good post g'n'g. In the example of the bloke doing 4-5hrs for $150, I agree its not good pay, he was there to clean the tracks(as I know the REagents here pick up on that), he kinda threw the window cleaning in "while he was there" sort of thing, so it looked like he'd actually done something.
    Did/do you clean the tracks as all part of window cleaning, or would that be different?
    cheers
    Great question. I generally didnt do the tracks, however if I observed a special need I could quote to do so - but chose not to.
    I really dont want to be lugging a vacuum around for such occasional use - and the rechargeable ones are not worth diddleedoo
    If you wipe the sill, then the tracks should be maintained by the resident when vacuuming. Mostly this is a few flies and loose dust.
    Otherwise, a proper wash requires taking the sliding window out altogether. If you notice water pooling in the track in the wet, then likely the two drain holes are blocked with flies/dust. These can easily be unblocked (once you find them) with a wooden skewer (kebab stick)

    Another option. Sometimes the external side of a window is difficult to reach from outside.
    Lift it out of the tracks, put it on the ground (on towel) and clean the outside surface from inside the room.
    Reach out thru the hole and clean the other panes from the inside.
    Remember that this may not be safe if above ground floor - there ARE times you should NOT attempt a window pane.
    David
    Mr Sparkle Car Spa

  10. #25
    Senior Member glassngrass's Avatar
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    Default Re: Window cleaning

    Quote Originally Posted by BSD View Post
    Excellent reply's here. take a bow,
    I aim to please

    I added a couple posts to the David's Bookkeeping Corner thread - Tax time readiness.
    Do yourselves a favor - take a peek.
    David
    Mr Sparkle Car Spa

  11. #26
    Dedicated Member Cranbourne Lawnmowing's Avatar
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    Default Re: Window cleaning

    Awesome information David. I was hoping you might have some input on this thread and you sure as hell didn't disappoint.

    Much appreciated. cheers glenn

  12. #27
    Member courty's Avatar
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    Default Re: Window cleaning

    Yep lots of good info here
    Would it be worth offering the service for external side only ? as I don't really want to be doing anything inside.
    "I'm not alone cause the tv's on yeah,I'm not crazy cause I take the right pills.... everyday" Jimmy Eat World

    http://www.dreamlawnsandlandscapes.com

  13. #28
    Senior Member glassngrass's Avatar
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    Default Re: Window cleaning

    Quote Originally Posted by courty View Post
    Yep lots of good info here
    Would it be worth offering the service for external side only ? as I don't really want to be doing anything inside.
    There are domestic clients who may at times ask for outside only, but I would be hard pressed to turn them down if they asked for the inside as well.
    There is really no reason to not do their insides, just take due care and diligence, there is not too much that can go wrong.
    Observe curtains, blinds, ease of access (furniture) and quote accordingly. I would never even consider moving an entertainment system (big tv and stereo) - I won't even help the owner to do so.
    I will not be be blamed for something going wrong... They would need to have this moved out the way them-self, or I skip that window. But I can't remember this ever being a problem.

    You wont be able to go straight from mowing, then into a house to clean - that's completely ass-about.
    You will be dirty and likely stink. It would be unprofessional to turn up like that and expect entry.
    For two reasons windows are best done before mid-morning (earlier again in summer.)
    1. Won't interrupt your day by returning home for a shower and change
    2. When sun hits the pane it get can get hot, drying the pane before you get a chance to finish squeegeeing. A hot pane can be nearly impossible to do well.
    David
    Mr Sparkle Car Spa

  14. #29
    Senior Member PaulG's Avatar
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    Default Re: Window cleaning

    I was subcontracting a guy last year to do external windows for me and on small to midsize Queenslander type office premises he was charging about $150 . Cleaners were doing the internal windows as needed but if you can do both it's more profit in your pocket. A full external housewash (softwash not pressure cleaner) for eaves, walls and windows for an average single level 3 bedroom home is about $450 through the guy I use for that too. (Just to give some price indications).

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