For the last few years window cleaning with a water fed pole has gained in popularity, and is now the preferred way of cleaning outside windows. The time saving over the traditional method of window cleaning with the squeegee can be as much as 50% faster. So what is involved, and what equipment would one need??
Firstly we will start with the brush as it is the part of the system that is doing the cleaning. There are many types of brush on the market, but the main part of the brush for cleaning windows are the jets that spray the water, and the bristles that are in contact with the glass. There are two types of jets, and are usually referred to as fan jets, or pencil jets. Fan sprays usually have the water coming out under pressure, and usually cover the whole width of the brush. Pencil jets usually have the water coming out from two places in the brush, not under any pressure. Rinsing with the brush on the glass is normally preferred by people using fan jets, and pencil jets usually preferred by people who lift the brush off the glass when rinsing. The next important part of the brush is the bristles, they come in all lengths, shapes, and density, but as a rule you don’t want them flocked(bashed at the ends)as they trap dirt, you also don’t want them too dense, as the dirty water won’t flow down the glass, and you want them crinkled, so that more of the bristle is in contact with the glass which aids scrubbing.
The pole, the first window cleaning water fed pole to come on the market were very heavy constructed mostly of fibre glass, and were quite conveniently made by the manufacturer not to be taken apart, meaning all different sizes were needed, to reach different heights of window. Now thankfully there are many types of pole on the market, which have been developed for window cleaning, by window cleaners. These poles are getting lighter stronger, and much less expensive.
Water treatment, You need to take all the dissolved solids out the tap water, so as when the water evaporates from the glass there is nothing left behind. If you used ordinary tap water to clean the windows, when the water evaporated the dissolved solids would be left behind, showing up as dirty marks on the glass. De-ionization, and Reverse Osmosis are the two ways of purifying the tap water, and the one you need can be determined by how hard your tap water is, Reverse Osmosis for hard water, and De-ionization for soft water.
Rest of the equipment needed, you need a pump to pump your pure water from the holding vessel to the window. You also need a means of carrying water to the work site which can be a van or trailer with a tank fitted, or a trolley with water containers on it. A hose reel is needed to transfer the water from the tank to the pole. You also need a 12V power supply to operate the pump.
There are many good window cleaning suppliers selling systems, and the three main questions you ask before you buy is, what sizes water treatment system is supplied (measured in GPD) How high does the pole reach, and is the tank baffled and secured in the van.
Cost alone should not only be considered when purchasing a water fed pole window cleaning system. Other things should be considered like how environmentally friendly is it? How efficient is the system?