5 Traps to Avoid When Setting Up & Using Your Water Fed Window Cleaning Pole
Are you still using traditional cleaning methods (soapy water, ladders, etc.) for high access window cleaning? Water fed cleaning poles are the latest innovation in commercial window cleaning and are quickly setting the new standard for professionals. If you’re ready to make the leap to a cleaner, faster and safer window cleaning experience, a water fed pole is an easy to assemble, easy to use tool to get you there.
In fact, the entire set-up of a cleaning pole system takes less than five minutes. The basic steps include connecting a hose to the system and attaching the pole components that help window cleaners best reach the windows — up to five stories high. Pole systems are compact, easy to keep clean, and save time and effort because the water source is continuous and easy to control.
At Unger, we’ve spent time in the field and understand the common mistakes window cleaning professionals make when assembling a water fed pole system. Here’s how you can avoid those mistakes and start cleaning!
Mistake #1: Not Properly Securing Extension Poles
If your pole is leaking or doesn’t feel secure during cleaning, most likely your extension pole is loose and needs to be firmly attached to the base of the master pole. Loose poles may result in water leakage and waste. They may even fall off during cleaning, resulting in injury and lost productivity. Take time to properly train your staff on the new equipment in order to avoid these hazards and have the safest, most efficient experience.
Mistake #2: Letting Your Poles “Wobble” and Not Flex Properly
As you set up the pole system, make sure you’re tightening the poles carefully, using the adjustable clamps that come with the pole. This ensures that you have exactly the right amount of tension needed to reach every part of the window. Over-tightening can be a problem as well because you need to allow just the right amount of flexibility. The ability to turn the pole easily as you clean is essential to the speed and thoroughness of washing the windows.
Mistake #3: Using the Wrong or Damaged Hose
If you experience less than ideal water pressure while cleaning, chances are that the hose carrying the water source to the tool is either old, worn or not connected securely at the source. Before assessing any problems with the pole, check the hose to make sure it is long enough and in decent shape, meaning there are no leaks or weak areas. Window cleaning with low water pressure is inefficient and will significantly increase the cleaning time.
Mistake #4: Failing to Turn On the Water Source
It’s common for facilities to turn off outdoor water sources during the winter months, especially in colder climates. So even if you’ve assembled your window cleaning pole and are ready to go, you may not be able to use it right away. Before you prepare to clean your outdoor windows, glass or solar panels, make sure that whoever is responsible for the sillcock key has done their job and turned on the water source. To avoid this scenario all together, it’s always a good idea for a window cleaner to carry their own sillcock key in case the person responsible is not available.
Mistake #5: Not Using the Right Brush Attachment
Multiple types of window cleaning brushes exist and each of them has a specific purpose. We recommend investing in several different types and using the right tool for each cleaning job. A versatile water fed pole system enables you to swap out brush attachments with ease. (Remember to tighten them properly — see #2, above.)
- Rectangular brush: These are common brushes, known for their large surface area. They come in several types, designed for either large particles or small debris. Some options are optimized for “gliding,” which means they travel smoothly across glass surfaces.
- Radius brush: They are best for sills and frames and can swivel easily to reach nooks and crevices.
- Solar brush: Similar in shape to radius brushes, these are designed specifically for solar panel cleaning and other delicate glass areas.
Check your brushes regularly for signs of wear and replace those that are beginning to degrade. Using old brushes results in more time and energy scrubbing windows. Or, they may simply be unable to thoroughly clean, especially dirty or hard-to-reach areas.
The Next Generation of Waterfed Pole Window Cleaning
Cleaning windows safely from the ground has never been easier if you avoid these common mistakes. With a waterfed pole system that exemplifies innovation and quality, you can efficiently clean outdoor glass surfaces with no twisting, more stability, greater pole rigidity and more precise control of the cleaning movement.