Need Advise ... working around those obstacles

I am trying to prepare myself with as much knowledge as possible prior to …

What if … bushes, flower beds, etc. are in the way making accessing that window difficult. How do you handle working around these obstacles?

What if … a very heavy large piece of furniture is in the way of your window to be cleaned?

What do you do in regards to drapery hanging in front of the windows? Do you remove the drapery first or do you simply cover them with something?

Thanks for the lessons!
Joie - Ca

good questions…looks to be a video idea


One that will help w/ most of those issues is to learn to use a short (4-8ft) pole and having a squeegee that has zero degree capability. Pratice on your house windows as if something was right in front of them.

For bushes I carry a good sized piece of carpet and gently lay it over the bush towards the window. For drapes, I find a chair and pull them out and st the lower part on the chair. For funiture, I just move enough to get to the window. You only need a couple of feet to gain access.

  1. I usually use a short Ettore pole (3 foot), put it near the bottom of the frame & pull back to access the area I’m cleaning. Try not to wet the leaves, as when they go back they mark the window.

  2. Don’t move it - really it can be done. Use a swivel squeegee to get the angle you need - or as Tony suggested a 0 degree.

  3. Get your arm in the top left corner & hold the curtain enough out of the way to clean the glass area you are working on. This a lot depends on your techinique - not usually possible with a straight pull & a long or wide window.

I don’t know how to answer your questions since every job has different obstacles of varies sizes and nature. I will say Practice, practice, practice is the best key too success.

I practiced for three months strait three hours a day every day before hitting the pavement. I started off with fanning on the biggest piece of glass in my house, my back sliding glass door. Once I felt comfortable with that I started on tuff windows, I even moved furniture in front of them to learn to work around it. If you practice at home you will figure all this out as you go before walking in someone else is home.

As far as working around shrubs that is a tricky one! Go over, under, in and behind, what ever it takes to get to the window safely. If you can’t get to it, make sure you note it in the assessment of the home.

Heavy furniture you will most definitely run into. Make sure you protect their property first and your profit second. Always note heavy furniture in the assessment so you’re prepared for the job the day of the job. And if you miss that heavy piece like I have done before, like a corner of a very heavy desk in a home office that would not allow me to open the window shutters, just let the home owner know that you missed this problem in the assessment and you would happily deduct the window from the bid price. You know what; she paid me for that window anyway.

Remember to practice with every tool that you have in your business you never know when you may have to use it in the field.

Thank you all for your tips of advise. My windows will certainly be happy to get so much attention! My Mom is pleased that her windows are also subject to my practice, and she has many flower beds and bushes in the way.

Joie - CA

For low level obstacles:

As Mr. Squeegee mentioned, learn to use a 0° handle on a pole. It’s a life saver.

Yesterday I was doing a store and there were snowbanks where I would normally be standing. I grabbed my small pole and 0° and banged those suckers out in no time.

Like mose have said here practice is the key. You will learn the best way for you to clean a window. I have been doing this for 12 yrs and I still learn something new all the time. No job is the same. The is a job het you will continually learn new things from.

As for heavy furniture Or even huge obstacles on commercial stuff. I make it clear to all of my customers , I will move a few smaller things to gain access. I will not move heavy furniture to gain access. Or move big displays to do a window. I am a window cleaner not a furniture mover. I havent had a problem yet. But you need to let them know this up front. Customers don t want to hear anything like that after you start the job. :eek:

I don’t know what kind of handles you’re using now but invest in some Ettore Contour Pro+ because they are very versatile.