How much more of a price increase to remove paint from windows and frames?

I’m doing a residential remodel and I’m not sure how much to add on for paint removal on glass and frames. There are 50 windows every last one of them have paint on them. Also for the windows that are on the second story that are in need of a scrub with steel wool (not because of paint but for regular build up) what is the most efficient way to achieve desirable results? Ladder? Pole?

The way I see it you have 2 choices:
1st RUN, I rather like this one because no telling what other stupid thing you are going come across.
2nd If you choose to stay around; clean a sample area by way of a stop watch Multiply by $1.25 per minute + add 15% multiply it by the amount of other windows and panes that should be your total. If they believe that is to much kindly excuse yourself, let them know they can call you if they change their mind.
Never forget: window cleaning is a skilled trade! If they want to hire a day-labor, they will soon learn that you are a true craftsman.

If I bid on these jobs and loose them to another window cleaner, I am good with that. Why? Because he will be tied up with a low income producing job unable to bid on the other nice paying jobs. More for me!!!


You will need a ladder to do 2nd story CCU.

I would charge 5-8x the price of a regular window clean. It depends on the frame being plastic, metal or wood but I use bronze wool, green pad as abrasives, plastic blades. Don’t use the green pad on glass. I use a large filling knife to protect the walls by placing it where frames meet walls - then I can scrub behind it. It makes a nice neat line for the eye and it is faster.

The square Japanese Filling knives are indispensable - cost 5 dollars. They can sometimes be used across plastic or metal because they’re just the right kind of blunt.


Forgive my ignorance but what is CCU?

Charge 2-3x the regular amount, if you’re new… DONT even try, scratches glass on 50+ windows is an insurance nightmare… not to mention 12-14 hour days (yes days) on this one job if you’re new to post construction window cleaning

Construction Clean Up.

I’ve also heard it referred to as Builder’s Clean, Initial Clean, First Clean - often used as synonyms.

It is a whole trade by itself really - I last counted 150+ tools for doing it because the circumstances can vary.

The key marketing point I make and know is true is that 9/10 window cleaners are going to scratch the crap out of modern windows with their Unger/Triumph metal scrapers. Those blades are very sharp and it is not enough. A lot of window cleaners hate CCU and I don’t blame them but it is very reliable work in recessions and the winter.

That is why I use plastic blades - my technique takes 1/3 longer but I might be the only window cleaner in my area that can guarantee scratch free CCU.

You’re right - I know people who have rung up 50k of damage in minutes.

Today’s modern window is large and heavy so installation is expensive - and 1 window can cost 5k-10k.

Just today I had a builder ask me to remove a long scratch from a window - there are photos in my other post on here. It is just one long scratch and it means it must be polished off or replaced - the rest of the window is perfect - so if you are a window cleaner who thinks a few scratches don’t matter then you should stay away from this job or one day the builder will put you into the trunk of his car.

I had to come “fix” a job… aka I was underbid, that company scratched every window which resulted in $35k in glass on this commercial property that had to be replaced.

Both the builder and cleaning company that subs out window cleaning work to me apologized for going with the cheapest price and that they understood why my prices were drastically higher.

1 Like

My initial bid was $700 I just got off the phone with him and told him the new price was $2100, he hesitated then reluctantly said ok. :crossed_fingers:t2::grimacing:


I’m already half way done with the job scratch free glass thus far. I finished the outside, all the paint is on the inside…

1 Like

I don’t think most cleaners and customers have updated that CCU is not just window cleaning with extra effort. If you don’t have the right procedures and tools you could be there for much longer than expected and if you’re using metal blades then the stress will eat you - that’s happened to most window cleaners I know.

1 Like

Good for you, but on CCU I’d never feel like I made the wrong call if I’m dropped because of price. When you get a customer that doesn’t get it - I tell them how it is and if they don’t believe me I move on so they can get updated by their own experience or glass damage.

1 Like

Could you show me these plastic blades you are talking about? I use the 6 inch Triumph stainless, would love a safer alternative.

1 Like

I use these for speeding up scraping on large glass areas.

The 6" blades become corrupted quickly if you have hard debris so I also use a cheaper smaller version called lil chizler for spot scraping. The combination of the two is great.

My process is to wet several windows, use the plastic blades to remove the worst concrete or plaster and rewet for bronze wool or melamine pads if there is paint spots or silicon.


I wouldn’t bid that. Have the client call the painters back to deal with it.

Unfortunately, we’ve had to throw painters under the bus a few times, but if they can’t do their job right it becomes their responsibility to fix it.


Buying these, thanks for the info.

1 Like

Hey, thank you for that link. I will purchase these and give them a try

1 Like

Or price it as high as you like and have them backcharge the painters…that works too.

1 Like

Usually it’s a minimum of triple the amount of a normal window., Or I just run for the hills. :joy:

Good Info: I just ordered the plastic blades.
What is The square Japanese Filling knives you mentioned?