Help! I had my first account the other day and I rode by there and the streaks are terrible! First off when I do this account it is beating down in the summer heat with the sun beaming on the windows, secondly I have to do pole work which I hadn’t practiced much before trying these windows many more obstacles than expected on the interior as well. What’s crazy is I can fan a window really well but my straight pulls suck! And this is not from a lack of effort, or learning. I practice at least an hour almost every day and I’ve watched every video known to man countless times but I still cannot straight pull a window with a pole to save my life! I have multiple tools I’m thinking I’m gonna have to get adjusted with a pivot tool with the sun beaming down this summer in SC. I have both the high flyer and excelerator, I’m more used to the moerman (I’ve had it longer) and I can use it ok just don’t know if I should trade the soft rubber out for some hard rubber, I want the next time I go to this account for the windows to be drastically better! Not to mention I have a pretty big job to do today that will be a lot of pole work as well. I scheduled some jobs out so I could practice a couple hours before I go do this job! I’m using a water and a touch of vinegar with either 4x platinum dawn or Meyers dish soap. Also other than excelerator and high flyer I have an 18 in super channel on a 40 Unger ninja a 22 in Sorbo cobra on a 30 Unger ninja. Please Help! I know it has everything to do with angle and pressure and believe me I have tried every possibility known to man wtf am I doing wrong ?
Wet the window more, leave a dry edge at the top, do the “7” technique of straight pulling… trial and error, that’s all that will help.
What part of SC?
I would kick the vinegar, and I prefer dawn ultra over platinum. Platinum is very concentrated and its easy to put too much in, at least to me. I tried vinegar once or twice and it streaked horribly. Remember, with window cleaning less is more as far as the mix goes as the more soap you have after a certain point the more streaks. You want enough for a good glide, especially if fanning, but no more than you need. I find I need less soap on humid days as well.
Also, GG4 soap helps the soap dry slower so sometimes it gives you the extra second or two you need. I put a dash of it in with my dawn.
The advice above is good on technique and if your mix is fine (i really think your mix is part of it) then that process will likely fix most of your issues. Some people leave a dry spot at top,(I do) and some (like me) wipe the squeegee between each pull, or at least each window if your feathering. It just comes down to preference and what the job needs.
Try it without the vinegar and not too much Dawn and see if you get better results. Don’t use too little soap either.
Since the sun is beating down on the windows only wet and pole squeegee from top to about your head level while it is still nice and wet, then wet and squeegee from there down. That way you are sure that your solution isn’t drying up on you too quickly.
1 If it’s a new account I’m guessing they were DIRTY… Either ladder them the first time or, double (paying a lot of attention to that top edge) wash them so your not pulling dirt down with the squeegee.
2 Obstacles. Getting a good pull is tricky if your not used to working around something in your way. Either move the obstacle or slow down to make sure you have uniform pressure on the squeegee. (easier said than done, don’t give up.)
3 Sun… ahhh hot sun…
some windows just blow up in the sun, I’ve had glass I’ve had to do 1/2 pane at a time because they smoke off so fast. (steam off)
try and get in early and take care of them before the sun gets to 'em
I’ve had pretty good experience with adding a water wetter like:
I prefer “SLICK” but, I imagine they’re about the same
gives you a few extra seconds before the glass dries to an unmanageable level.
don’t give up or get too frustrated.
good on you for your concern about quality.
When it’s really hot , an the sun is drying up your solution before you can get to it with the squeegee. You have to wet less windows in at a time. Make sure your strip washer is soaked
You might have to try a back flip , or use Two poles , one with your strip washer ,an one with a squeegee . You can’t pull dry glass it will streak.
There are times when it’s so hot I have to wet one plate , an pull it right away. Especially on black glass.
Thanks! Definitely thought it had something to do with my solution bc it’s not from a lack of effort I practice constantly and can fan fairly fast I just never put too much effort into straight pulling with a pole or in hand as I had my fanning down I thought straight pulls would be simple lol. I switched to no vinegar and dawn 3x and my job today went by much better ( actually had a window fly into the glass while talking to the store owner) I still have problems with tiny lines sometimes following the part of squeegee on dry glass, I wipe my squeegee and feather and angle my squeegee to try and reduce it but sometimes I just get the lines, it’s all part of learning I guess! Thanks again
I like that idea Gary the only problem I have when doing half the window in one section then the other half by hand (fanning, pulls etc.) is I always can tell where I started by hand, I saw that if you cut in in the middle when fanning the bottom half that it can help reduce this but I just have been struggling with getting good results like this. Any suggestions?
And I’m in Anderson
Thanks Jimmy! I definitely won’t give up, and I want to make my customers look forward to their next scheduled clean and I was just not happy with my work last week, it’s an every 2 weeks account so the good thing is I got a few more days to practice and get ready bc I want to really do amazing this next clean. I’ve had problems before when breaking the window down to straight pulling top and fanning in hand bottom of streaking where I began fanning. I’m gonna keep trying though! Thanks again bud
Thanks! Yeah I’m definitely trying to get more accustomed with my pivot tools and have thought about trying a backflip in the mean time, today I worked with 2 poles and did a lot better however it wasn’t as hot I was doing exterior windows and didn’t have all the obstacles I have to work around at my other account.
Thanks yeah I’m thinking my solution with the vinegar and the platinum might have been a tough mixture to work with in the 90 degree South Carolina sun. I also have been playing around with different angles and pressure on my pole. Any suggestions on angles to use when really close to glass with a pole And how much pressure to use?
Practice is key. It will come. Sometimes a window needs to be cleaned twice, first pass to get the major debris off then a second pass to actually get it to come clean. Angle and pressure of squeegee is important, also swap out your squeegee rubber. It can get little knicks in the rubber, I have even used a new rubber and right away had to swap it out or flip it around to the other side. The very top edge against the frame be careful to not get that too wet. Even wrapping a dry towel on the tip of your pole and wiping across the top edge to ensure no dripping. But first clean that area will be dirty so initially you want to clean it well so subsequent cleans are better. Doing the top half with pole and the bottom half by hand should come out the same with a little practice. Since straight pulls are an issue right now focus on them until you get it right. There will always be times here and there where straight pulls are the better option, so you want that in your “tool box” too.
Early on when I was slow at cleaning windows, I had a home job with black tinted windows on the back side of the home on a 100+ degree day. After fighting the first few windows with the solution drying almost as I put it on the window, I got some ice and put it in my solution bottle. I found having ice cold solution gave me just enough time to clean the window without the solution drying. These days depending on size of window, I will do sections of the window at a time or plan my day/jobs in such a way that I am hitting hard to do windows early or late depending on how the sun hits them. Same with residential, I plan out the house in relation to where the sun is and time of day so that I can optimize my time and efficiency
come back at a later or earlier time of the day when the windows are not in direct sun
obviously something is wrong but without a video determining what is all guessing.
in the meantime get an unger high reach kit, it does not work well for cleaning but if you have gotten most of the dirt off with the squeegee the polishing pad spritzed with purified water will work well to take any streaks or turn marks
Couple things to pay attention to:
Be sure get windows exposed to sun plenty wet and do it in sections.
Start with a dry edge, pulling wet edges will streak, especially if you are fighting hot windows.
Angles + Poles.
The angle out from the glass is important.
HANDLE ANGLE + POLE ANGLE
Using a Moerman Excelerator 2.0 you have 40, 25, 10, -5, -20 degrees to choose from.
When using the pole and Excelerator, think of the triangle you make between you, the glass, and the ground (picture yourself side on and what angled triangle is your pole at?). This matters when choosing the setting on the handle.
40 = any glass at a steep angle (straight up almost) above your head.
25 = poling at a 45 degree angle out from the glass.
10 = poling straight in front of you, or any angle below (say) 20 degrees.
-5/-20 = any poling below your waste.
In the sun, the speed you can switch between the FLIQ pad and the squeegee blade is important as well (don’t FLIQ it to hard and spray water everywhere). You can master switching without splattering the glass you just cleaned with practice. It’s an art.
Try just scrubbing up the glass beforehand (pre-soaking) and leaving it (don’t worry about it drying to much) and let the soap chemical do it’s work (disolve/breakdown the dirt/grease etc = same principle as soaking your dishes they’re easier to clean if you pre-soak). Do the whole section of windows like that. Then come back and wet up quickly, one panel at a time if in direct sun (won’t need a long/hard scrub this time) and FLIQ fast, and squeegee (Excelorate or straight pull).
The soft Moerman factory rubber is the best with the Excelerator on the pole (not the longest lasting but good for Excelorating).
Use soft to medium pressure when squeegeeing on pole. An angle adapter (older Moerman one, not Dr Angle Arm) can help with closing out as well as the angles on handle.
Don’t use vinegar. Follow the advice above. Whatever dish soap you prefer, and/or some GG4/3 etc (if you want).
The angle of the handle out-from the glass is important when straight pulling (not to steep, not to shallow). The angle down/across is important when side pulling (30/20 degrees from top to bottom of blade = top edge goes first). The angle in the hand when straight pulling is important (not to steep, not to shallow).
Really hard to explain without a video or pictures. But hope it helps.
Really good post @MrSparkleNZ! The only part I disagree with is the Moerman soft. I have found it doesn’t work in our SC heat, at least for me. Are you in a cooler or less humid environment? Could just be difference in style/preference, but I find pulex hard works great for me. I tried ettore but it kept leaving rubber burn on the edge. Maybe Moerman change their formula? Its been awhile since I’ve tried it.
The: “Working solution” (PolznBladz) i.e. the right amount of slip (soap content), really helps.
Yes, I’m in a much colder climate (South Island of New Zealand). Must be really hot in SC (Southern California?). So I can understand streaking in direct sun. It’s down to personal preference with rubber. I’m still experimenting and open to suggestions. The soft touch with Moerman soft, is good enough for me at the moment.
Good detailing skills as well. I have no problem detailing when I have to, even with Moerman.