photo by Frank Rave
What is the best way to clean interior windows?
When it comes to cleaning interiors, some window cleaners can’t help but hear the theme from “JAWS.” Queue the looming soundtrack as the window cleaner tip-toes into the fresh, clean home… the work boots step onto the fresh, white carpet… the bucket sloshes next to the brand-new suede couch, just waiting to jump out and soak it with its soapy vengeance… the window cleaner gulps, takes their mop to a window, and a single drop of solution drips onto the hardwood floor…
Window cleaners… does this sound like you?
Well, it doesn’t have to! In this week’s article, Window Cleaner University will talk about the best ways to clean interior windows without the dramatics.
First Things First: Cover Up
Whether you’re a traditional window cleaner or a water-fed enthusiast, the first step to cleaning interiors is covering up precious areas. Storing some large, absorbent sheets in your vehicle that are kept in plastic bags can help you clean interiors with confidence, time after time. These sheets can be purchased anywhere from your local big box store to online. Wholesale fabric retailers even sell cotton sheets by the yard for an economically-friendly price. There are also less expensive options available if you’re okay with purchasing “scrap” pieces. But it will look more professional and be easier to work with, fold up, and store if you choose to purchase a rectangular sheet. You can even buy cotton sheets that match your company’s colors to reinforce its branding. Customers will feel reassured and respected when they see you laying sheets over their personal items.
Another way to be courteous and prevent messes on your customers’ floors is by wearing shoe covers. Investing in shoe covers is a great way to show your respect and project your professionalism when working indoors. Visual impressions in the professional world are hugely important, as it is human nature to respond internally to images we see. Some customers may be shy to say out loud if something you’re doing makes them uncomfortable and will respond by not calling you back. Plus, we all know that some customers are the exact opposite and will let you know about anything they don’t like. But simple things like wearing shoe covers in the home or business can put your company high up in their mind. Disposable 100-packs of Skid Resistant Shoe Covers are easy to use when you have you plus a crew, or getting yourself a heavier-duty pair of Pro Shoe Covers can last a long while and be used time and time again.
Before even approaching your bucket of water and mop, removing as much dust from the glass is essential for getting the fastest and most efficient clean when indoors. The High Dusting Kit, which includes an Unger Pro Ceiling Fan Duster, Ettore Elite Cobweb Duster, and Unger Lamb’s Wool Duster, has everything you need to use by hand or by attaching to your pole. The Unger Pro Ceiling Fan Duster features microfiber tendrils that easily wipe down fan blades and vents. It can also be used to swipe the tops of window frames. The Ettore Elite Cobweb Duster is best used for corners and window screens. When spider webs get wet and stuck throughout the fibers of your wet stripwasher, it doesn’t help you clean the glass any faster. Taking care of the dust before applying any water helps avoid a tangled mess. The Unger Lamb’s Wool Duster is best for removing dust from the main surface of the glass. Once this dust is gone, you can worry less about pushing it all over the glass and scrub down the harder dirt instead.
Traditional vs. Pure Water
The age-old argument rears its head even when discussing cleaning interiors. Should one clean traditionally or with purified water? The answer is that both are great options but in different ways. Many folks have great results cleaning traditionally and find that the outcomes last longer. Cleaning with purified water is ideal for lightly soiled windows. However, traditional window cleaning may be easier to control when cleaning inside someone’s home, especially since there are more precious items that can be dripped on and get a deeper clean. For traditional window cleaners, utilizing a BOAB makes it easier to keep the soap solution contained and allows you to leave your bucket outdoors to eliminate the risk of big spills.
What about if you want to clean with pure water only?
Luckily, there are some nifty gadgets on the market that allow you to do so. Refillable indoor cleaning systems include the Unger Stingray Microfiber or QuikPad kits, the IPC Eagle Cleano System, and the Unger SpeedClean Window Kit Deluxe. More flexible options that allow you to clean either traditionally or with a spray bottle of pure water are these attachments from Ettore, the Butterfly Kit and the Microfiber Mop.
Reach corners and edges easily with the Unger Stingray. The QuikPads or Microfiber Mops are easy to swap out when you need a new one, and each can clean up to 150 square feet of glass. The spray nozzle applies the cleaning solution right to the pad, so you don't have to worry about the spray becoming airborne.
The IPC Eagle Cleano has a special micro-spray system that delivers just the right amount of pure water to soften the dirt, making it easy for the microfiber pad to clean it.
The Unger SpeedClean Window Kit Deluxe eliminates the risk of spills, drips, or streaks. The kit includes a 6-foot three-section OptiLoc pole that attaches to an aluminum pad holder. Wet down the pad with the Sprayer on a Belt. The short microfiber pads are great for polishing the glass, while the long pads are excellent at removing heavier dirt and grime.
The Ettore Microfiber Mop is great for collecting dust as a dry mop or collecting dirt when used wet. When the cover gets dirty, just give it a wash in hot water. Avoid using laundry detergents, as this can come out during your cleaning process and leave streaks on the glass. The head also folds in to allow you to remove and replace the cover easily.
If you want to use two heads, one wet and one dry, give the Ettore Butterfly Kit a try. This setup has two mop heads on both sides of a dual-head acme threaded adapter. You can spray a foam cleaner such as Sprayway Glass Cleaner on one side to clean the glass, then switch to the other mop to dry. Replacement mop covers can be purchased if you intend to do multiple windows in one day, so you can keep your indoor cleaning process quick and seamless.
If an Accident Happens, it’s just a Lesson from the School of Life
In the world of window cleaning, accidents happen, and sometimes, there is nothing you can do besides clean up the mess, let water spots on furniture dry, or remove stains from the carpet to the best of your ability. Let’s say you’ve taken all of the precautions in the world to keep your customer’s home or business as protected as possible from water spots. Children, pets, clumsiness, equipment malfunctions, or just common human error can cause spills, drips, and stains. Allow yourself to accept what happened, be honest with your customer, apologize, and clean up the mess to the best of your ability. Most often, people are understanding. Plus, window cleaners work with soap and water, rarely ever bleach, and window cleaning solutions don’t usually leave permanent stains. If you clean with pure water, the mess is even less serious. So, take it easy on yourself. Nobody is perfect, and every accident, mistake, or mishap is just another learning experience to take in from the school of life.
Still Have Questions?
Don’t sweat it! If there is anything you’re unsure about, want to learn more about, or need advice for, do not hesitate to reach out to us. Window Cleaning Resource is here for you 24/7, with the help of our super-friendly window cleaning experts.
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