Wagtail "Do they really help to lessen the pain of window cleaning?"

I just read an article on robinson-solutions blog about musculo-skeletal disorder. It talks about the aches and pains of being a window washer. Mostly talks about complaints of muscle, bones and joints, as well as their connectivity tissues , such as tendons and ligaments.

I heard that Wagtail squeegees are ergonomically deigned to relieve the pain of washing windows. What has your experience with their gear done for you?

I use my wagtail mostly on commercial and that only makes up about 15-20% of my work. My experience has been that if you are doing commercial work and use the tool as demonstrated in most of the videos out there, then the tools pivot action does most of the work for you. It helps that most commercial windows we have have deep mullions or are mall glass with separation in between the panes or joined by silicone.

However, when doing residential windows (at least the window styles in my area), you’re more likely to run into lower profile seals and frames and can’t just fling the tools into the corners and sides or you’ll ride over those seals and low profile frames which then leaves lots of detailing. So you need to control the tool more with your wrist for these types of windows thus making the stress on your joints about equal to a regular squeegee.

Mike
I think the motion is less with the wagtail when fanning. Mostly done with you wrist. I keep one for pole work on hard to get at windows on the inside with deep ledges

Thanks John,
You and Mark have made some good points. I’m thinking about getting the wagtail handle that holds other manufactures channels. I was watching Marks video and he seemed to be putting very little effort into the window he cleaned with the wagtail. That and Karl’s article on his blog got me thinking.

I had a chance to use my free Wagtail for the first time Friday on a commercial job. 12 ft high wide windows. Shaved about 20 min. off the time it normally took movin a ladder all the time. It worked great, so great i ordered another one.:smiley:

I highly recommend the Wagtail Whirlwind 18". You can use it with or without the microfibre scrub pad. You can also use any standard profile squeegee channel and rubber because it is held in place with one screw in the centre.

The wagtail rubber is awesome but if you’re using the wagtail squeegee outdoors in the cold temps you’ll want to switch to your preferred soft rubber.

You’ll love it for storefront for sure.

<a href=“Shopwindowcleaner.com” target=“_top”><img src=“Shopwindowcleaner.com whirlwind-1.jpg” alt=“” title=“” /></a><img style=“border:0” src=“Shopwindowcleaner.com” width=“1” height=“1” alt=“” />

I use only my Wagtail now for all my pole work.

I’m not good at fanning with it on the pole, though. I still do straight downward strokes with the pole, but now I don’t have to move side-to-side as I go across the window. And, you don’t have to worry about what’s behind you anymore becuase you can always pull it at an angle.

I had the same issues John. I decided that I’d give it another go and tried to relax a little on the pressure. I found that it really helped and made those round top windows a breeze.
I prefer the 14" one myself for those smaller round tops.

<a href=“Shopwindowcleaner.com” target=“_top”><img src=“Shopwindowcleaner.com whirlwind.jpg” alt=“” title=“” /></a><img style=“border:0” src=“Shopwindowcleaner.com” width=“1” height=“1” alt=“” />

I’ve been having great success with my 12" and 18" wagtail flipper however, this morning I was using the 18" and a pole to do big pane store front glass. The frames stuck out about 2" or so. I was having trouble closing out without leaving water/soap. The scrubber would get caught between the rubber and the window frame. Has anyone else had this problem and how to I fix it?

I’ve been having great success with my 12" and 18" wagtail flipper however, this morning I was using the 18" and a pole to do big pane store front glass. The frames stuck out about 2" or so. I was having trouble closing out without leaving water/soap. The scrubber would get caught between the rubber and the window frame. Has anyone else had this problem and how to I fix it?

That has been the question that has stopped me from getting one.
DWs

Do any of you guys think the wagtail is easier on your body. I’m thinking about my storefront gigs more than the residential. Their web site makes claims that it is more ergonomical to use than standard gear. Do you think that is true?

I dont know, Mike. I think that is hard to tell…after a long day I am tired whatever squeegees I am using! My elbow seems to ache a lot lately (whether I have knocked or strained it at some point without noticing I am not sure), that is why I asked you about the Steccone equipment.
I tend to swap around to try and avoid such problems at the moment, but I think I am governed by mood…one day I like using my wagtail, the next I prefer my Slayer…
So, in my experience, it does not seem to matter. Maybe I need to try using the Wagtail only for a long period of time?

I believe that we all need a work out program, your shoulders must be stronger or more fit than your normal work load. At least thats what my doc said. Are shoulder are not made to be above your head, ya right.
As far as different tools, hard to answer, I went from 22" too 18" as far as fanning. If you go lighter, you may have too push alittle harder. It was much better on my body. At 6’ I spend my day on my feet. The shorter guys or gals spend there day jumping. They went home beat after 8 hrs.
I’m sure this don’t answer your question, but we are all so much different that can’t see tools helping that much. It’s what gives you great results and your body feels good. I rather climb a ladder at times then pole, my shoulders are junk after 20 years of pole work.

I feel the same way. The folks at wagtail claim they can help.
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[FONT=arial][FONT=Tahoma]There is a nice article about the ergonomic benefits of using their products on the wagtail website. [/FONT][/FONT]
[FONT=arial]Wagtail Pivotal Cleaning Tools - Ergonomics

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you need the wagtail angle arm

it works great for closing out deep window sills. Just put it upside down on your pole, with any squeegee or wagtail.

I do have one of them arms and truly only use it for a commercial solarium glass.It saved me 10 min. 2 times a week for 10 years. Only job I used it on so worth having on board.:slight_smile:

im sure its easier on the body. i use wagtail only every day and now and again get bored and pick up a different squeegee and can feel the heavier weight straight away. far as i know ,no other squeegee has the reach of a wagtail ,that long handle .

im now not so sure !! this last year i have used as my main the wagtail flipper and i have dropped from 18" ,to 14" and now 12" as my shoulder and wrist got so painful. i started using my opposite arm and now that wrist is painful . thinking about it, the wagtail+wet pad must be heavier on the wrist than a squeegee alone. Does anybody here know if the Steccone squeegee is lighter than the wagtail squeegee ? (if it is ,i might try it )

Yes, the steccone handle and channel are lighter than a wagtail (squeegee only).

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Anything that causes you to use more wrist and arm action would cause stress.
I think the wagtail takes some moves that might cause more stress than
just straight pulls. Even snaking causes more wrist action.