To Pole or Not To Pole

I am bidding this building in the coming week. Not sure what to charge, but my question is:

Can I pole this building and stay on the ground? I don’t wfp yet and believe I have plenty to do before getting into that. Quality is extremely important to me, but from what I’ve read on WCR it seems like the quality will suffer some if poled? Would the tinted windows allow me some slack on the detailing?

See attached.

If you have 2 cents on where you would start on the bid, throw it out there. There are about 35 other similar windows scattered around the building. No big deal if you don’t.


I’d have no problem poling these if there isn’t any hard water stains or runoff on the glass. I haven’t ventured into WFP either.

Get yourself the 30’ unger 5 peice and pole that puppy. If there’s hard water stains just let them know you can probably remove them but it’s gonna cost extra, you’ll probably need a ladder or lift for that.

Thats a perfect job for a waterfed pole. go for it

I’d pole that with ease my brother!

so far everyone who has replied also has experience poling.

Pole work takes practice (leave it be larry). This might not be the place to learn. The windows in the left-hand photo are about 18 feet high.

You will want a back-flip, 18-22 incher, the under pole and a nice, cool, non windy day to bust your cheery on those windows.

You could also use a shorter pole; climb a 14’ step ladder and go from there.

do you pole now?

Phil, out of curiosity and to help me guage heights in the future, how did you guesstamate the height of the windows? To me they seem more like 25 feet high. Not questioning you- im guestioning myself.

I would say this is the perfect job for WFP, but after it’s been cleaned with a squeegee first. I think a job like this will need to be cleaned with a squeegee within 6 months to a year before it could be WFP with similar results. Some may disagree, but that’s how I would do it.

That’s kinda personal Phil.


I wouldn’t worry too much about the amount of experience you have poling, it’s not rocket science. Just keep it simple and do straight strokes to start. One of my first jobs I poled on was a 2 story building with similar sized glass, it looked intimidating but once you bang out the first couple windows you should fly through it. Try not to slop your scrubber all over the top frame so you don’t get runs. If you do slap a huck(or scrim) on your pole and wipe the top down. I sometimes like to use two poles, one for the scrubber, one for the squeegee. This keeps me from continually lifting the pole with the squeegee, just lean it against the building in a safe place.

I suck at poling, but using it everytime I can to get practice, and I use 2 poles too, much easier. If you are not that good at it, it helps to move fast to avoid runs if you get lots of water on the top frame as Mike said.

I found it much easier to do lateral pulls instead of verticals, with verticals I get lines most of the time.

As Phil mentioned, the Back-flip is the way to go here. No switching poles or using two poles. (not that there’s anything wrong with that.)

Try this Carlos:
When poleing vertically, quickly angle the squeegee as you pull down. Keep the left side of the channel just slightly lower then the right. You would think that water would run down hill, leaving a streak on the left, but it actually flows uphill to the right, which you squeegee again.

I would have no problem (traditional) poling this glass. It’s not enough glass to break out my WFP stuff. Just use a real aggressive scrubber like a Blue Max and it should get all the dirt and debris.

Of course if there are hard water stains you could try a white scrub pad on a Doodle Bug with your favorite hard water stain remover. If that did not get it you’d have to get up close and personal.

The glass looks higher than 18’ to me. Just make sure you have a pole that’s long enough and you’re good to go.

Get a backflip and pole those windows.

No need to squeegee first. Im talking from 10 years of wfp experience here.
Squeeges are not needed for this job.

Could there be other factors at play here, such as location?


I think Phil was guessing because he knew that the tree in the picture is a soft maple. It looks to be 30’ tall. Knowing that they grow and average of 1ft a year and that this building was built in 1994 and that most trees are placed in the ground at 15’. Now with that in mind if you trimmed the top off 12 feet you would be right about 18’.

What he failed to calculate was that in the third year these trees jump 5 extra feet so this building is by the above calculation somewhere between 21-25 ft.


have you tried a backflip?
speeds things up 2x…

WOW…part business man, part mathematician…

how many strokes does it take to burn a rubber?

(keeping in mind it’s Unger soft rubber in mid July, you’re working mostly in the shade and it’s in the 90º’s…and you have slip solution, and you using a super channel, and you have a light hand, and you wearing a blue shirt :D:D