We got a call to do a house with many french thermal pane windows, normally a real PITA and expensive for the customer. As I’m struggling with this heat and humidity due to health reasons, I offered to use my WFP for outs only at a third the price so I gave it a shot.
Two hours later, all the dirt and bird crap came off, the customer was quite impressed and we agreed to do this every few months. He saved money, I saved time and potential health…win-win.
So here it is, I finally realized something. WFP isn’t a replacement for traditional hands-on window cleaning I’ve done for years, it’s a tool to help ease the ladder work I have increasing trouble with. For me it works best if the windows just have basic dust and dirt on them, not the typical silicone/artillery fungus/fallout/screen deposit garbage I run into all the time that requires a scraper and deposit remover.
@dcbrock. Correct on use, but don’t cut the price! (Though I have seen hot water with dwell time take off stuff my mop couldn’t, including artillery fungus I believe.) That equipment cost money! A mechanic shop doesn’t charge less because they have a fancy lift and air tools. To each their own, just thought I’d throw that out there. I’m glad you are able to stay healthy, safe and move faster. The miracles of WFP!
I have found that WFP is more efficient and less time consuming on French; Colonial; cut ups - whatever the term used - BUT I do not reduce my price since it is an expensive tool system to purchase and practice to get right. ----> ROI <----
Shotgun mold or fungus is a pain but if you soak it real good then come back a few moments later to soak and scrub again it helps to loosen it up in order to scrub off - that is another reason NOT to lower your price for a new tool because in some cases such as those you spend a little more time and effort.
Think of it like this: DO NOT CHARGE OUT OF YOUR OWN POCKET.
As already mentioned a mechanic doesn’t get a new tool specific for his job only to be able to reduce his income. A fishing Captain doesn’t get a more fuel efficient motor so that he can reduce the charter fee. A bike shop doesn’t add a new service station to ease the burden of bike repair in order to charge less.
There is profit without gouging.
Perhaps another time, for whatever reason, you cannot get it cleaned with the WFP, now you have to tell him “Sorry buddy, I need to up-charge you because my new tool won’t get the job done - maybe next time”. Imagine his response? Charge what the job is worth no matter the tool used.
Did you get nose to glass? It may be either some form of contaminant (maybe residue from pest control?) that needs to be scrubbed with extra fine bronze wool and compound, or could be a leaky seal and water dripped between the panes?
I agree, either you have a very very dirty frame above-- or that is some kind of pesticide. Like above mentioned, scrub and rinse the entire frame…let it dry completely (this may take 1 minute, it may take 20…I’ve had jobs where I had to wait 20 to come back due to leaking down story after story on windows-- no way around it.
Now if you have to wait so long, you may have been better off doing it traditionally. I have used WFPs for 16 years, and its a good addition to your collection-- but it is NOT the end all, say all. For outside french windows, and for RECURRING (weekly, monthly, etc…no longer than 2-3 months though) jobs…very good. As I mentioned, a home that I did by hand (all cutups, McMansion) used to take me 6 hours…I do the job now with WFP in 2.5 hours.
Your reasoning to get into it is the right one-- it will reduce your wear and tear on the body. I’m not sure what system you have…I have two different DI tanks-- One is a 3/4 cubic foot (the big boy) and the other is a CRSpotless Dual-DI system (.33 cubic feet total). My water TDS where I work is normally 100-120…these tanks last me forever…but if 200+, you may need RO. Now…I don’t really think you should spend the thousands on systems you see here…my friend has built his own for under 600 dollars and has worked perfectly for him. Plus, you can have an RO system for great drinking water so the 600 dollars pays for itself…if not on windows!
I put my name on the job and my reputation of getting the windows cleaned to hopefully amaze is on the line. Window cleaning is a L U X U R Y service, so why reduce your L U X U R Y service to a “that’ll do” service? Charge what the job is worth and make the windows as clean as you can get them; there is a price for that.
You assume a customer wants a lesser job until word of mouth proves otherwise - say what you do, do what you say, and charge for the result not the method.
I have found that the WFP brush does an amazing job on French paned windows. Perhaps it is technique or effort put into it? I do not know, just guessing. But for years I spent a obnoxious to me amount of time on the individual frames and glass (exterior), then when I added the WFP brush found out rather quickly I could do a more efficient job. Carry on, I shall as well.
If I was going to do that I would be hand cleaning a few hundred french panes. WFP by nature can’t get windows as clean so I charge accordingly.
Can you explain how it cannot get windows just as clean? And without mentioning silicone or artillery fungus? I understand that those are things we run into but a squeegee doesn’t take them off either. You have to have additional tools and techniques to remove them. On a window with normal filth, I’d argue that a WFP not only gets it just as clean, but cleaner, in less time, with less effort.
Exactly. When you’re right up on the glass you can see everything and fix accordingly. Can’t do that when you’re 15’ away.
Look, not trying to hurt feelings, but just saying WFP can’t do everything I’ve been doing the past quarter century. It has it’s place and limitations so I price accordingly. It does clean standard dirt/dust very well but that’s it.
I remember years ago when WFP started coming ‘on scene’ and it’s primary use was large commercial glass. Once I first heard of some dude trying it on residential we all kinda laughed and brushed it off as someone trying to cut corners to make a buck.
I realize that mentality has changed a bit, seems WFP is all the rage now. I’ll admit it’s pretty slick and techy, customers keep asking what it does. I just tell them it keeps me off the high ladders in the heat.
I hardly ever use WFP on windows I haven’t scrubbed by hand before, that way I know that the windows will come out perfect with WFP, better than traditional.
As for discounting when using WFP, I would instead offer a complimentary exterior only cleaning to the most valuable clients once in a few years. It’s not for anyone, just clients who use you a LOT!
That way the price remains the same, but you are showing your appreciation and on many residential I do it will take Only 2-2,5h.
Just a thought…
Yup, I’m going to do the same. Tried using it today on outs only customer after a house wash but I wasn’t thrilled with the results. There’s this ‘fallout’ crap that collects at the top of the bottom window and nothing short of a razor gets it off.