Quick and Easy Window Washing
by Donald Ray Burger

Some years ago I was exploring the old Colorado & Southern Railroad right of way just outside of Georgetown, Colorado. I drove up to Silver Plume, Colorado, to take a look. When late morning rolled around I went to the downtown area and picked an interesting looking restaurant for lunch. As I sat eating, a window washer came around to clean the big plate glass windows that formed the front of the restaurant. I watched. And learned.

The guy washing the windows looked like a young man in his twenties. He had a pail and two poles. One pole had a cloth scrubber on the end, which he used to loosen dirt and dust on the windows. He was using a special fluid to soap the windows. It made some suds, but not too many. The other pole had a squeegee on it. After he soaped down the window, he pulled the squeegee down the pane at a slow, even rate and dragged the water off the window, leaving it clean and dry. He had a cloth in his back pocket with which he wiped the rubber on the squeegee at the end of each stroke. This seemed to eliminate streaking. He worked extremely fast, with a steady rhythm.

Before he finished I slipped away from my table to talk to him. I learned that he was using Ettore equipment. I wrote it down and located the supplies at Bering's Hardware when I returned to Houston.

What had impressed me the most was the efficiency of his movements. He could clean a large picture window in just a couple of minutes, ready to move on to the next window without fuss.

Hardly anyone likes to wash windows. That is probably why glass goes so long between cleanings. But by watching this professional, and figuring out the equipment he used, I am now a window washing maniac, and I can wash the main windows at the rear of our house in less than ten minutes. That includes all clean up. And we have ten large windows. Here's how I do it.

First, you must get the right equipment. Six items are required. This is the key. First, Get a bucket or pail that you will devote solely to window washing. In it you will store the bulk of your equipment other than the two poles. The pale must have a large enough diameter to allow the scrubber to completely immerse. Twelve inches should do it. Second, get Ettore Super Concentrate Squeegee Off liquid cleaner. It is blue, and it gives streak free results. It is important to get the right fluid, because that is one of the keys to getting streak free results. Don't skimp here.

Third, you will need an Ettore cleaning pad. This is what you will use to scrub off the dirt and dust. The pad is cloth, and does a great job. I have never had to replace mine even after several years of use. Fourth, you will need an Ettore Window Squeegee. This is important. Ettore squeegees are much better than other brands. Also, they are well made and give the pleasure one can only get when using first class equipment. For my windows, I use the twelve inch squeegee. They come in other widths. What you should get depends on the side of the window panes. Figure on making two to three drags down the pane to get all the water. Fourth and fifth, you will need two poles. One pole is for the scrubber and one is for the squeegee. You can use a single pole and take the cloth pad off when it is time to squeegee, but it is more elegant (and quicker) to have two poles. How long the poles need to be depends on how high up the top of the pane is. Better to get a long pole and avoid ladders! Sixth, and last, you will need a cotton rag/shop cloth to wipe the squeegee dry at the end of each run down a window pane.

Here are the steps I employ. First, I get the bucket with the concentrate, the cloth pad, the squeegee and the cotton rag in it. Next, I get the two poles. I squirt a cap full of concentrate into the bucket and use the hose to add about four inches of water. This measurement is not critical, from my experience. You want some suds, and enough water to cover the cloth of the scrubber. Attach the scrubber to its pole and dip it in the concentrate. Then, go to cleaning the window. I'm not sure any pattern is better than another, just as long as you reach every corner.

After scrubbing, take the squeegee and attach it to its pole. Starting at the top, slowly drag the squeegee down one edge of the window. When you have finished a run, use a cloth/shop rag to wipe all water off the squeegee blade. Repeat until all water is removed. Because of the excellence of the equipment, no streaks will be left behind.

If the window is low to the ground, pulling the pole with the squeegee on it down may be difficult. In such cases, I move the squeegee horizontally instead of vertically.

I know this has been a long post. However, using the Ettore equipment and the described techniques will make this job go quickly. And the excellence of the Ettore products will actually make the task enjoyable, as will the results.

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