For many professional window cleaners, cleaning small window panes are literally a big pain! This is because they take a lot longer do and can be harder to get a good result. This page will endeavour to help both professionals and householders to push through the pain barrier.
Besides the basics mentioned in the Getting Started page, it is important to have a small sized squeegee. I generally use a 6 inch one. Of course, it needs to be at least the same size - or smaller than the actual window pane you're going to clean.
For a washer, it's ideal to have a small one that fits inside the window. However, you can take the sleeve off a larger t-bar and fold it into your hand to use without the bar.
You will probably need more rags (and patience) than normal too.
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The first thing to do is to wash the set of windows with soapy water. Make sure to give them a good scrub and get into the corners.
Next, get the squeegee ready. If the window is big enough, use the regular 'snake pattern' technique. The advantage of this is that you minimise the amount of times you need to place the rubber of the squeegee back onto the glass. Each time you do this, there is a little trail of soapy water left from where you started.
If the window is not big enough to warrant the snake technique, you need to go straight across or down (it doesn't really matter which) several times. To minimise drag marks from the squeegee starting point, use a towel (it doesn't matter if it's a bit damp) to wipe the edge you intend to start from. This wipe should be on the glass, about a finger's width. Also, wipe the rubber of the squeegee, then go ahead and swipe across the window. Wipe the rubber with the towel each time before placing it on the glass again. Place it so there is a good overlap of already cleaned window (20 - 100mm). Make sure to push the rubber right into the frame on the finishing edge.
The goal is to remove as much water as possible from the glass with the squeegee, without needing to go over touching up with a rag too much. (Using rags sometimes runs the risk of leaving lint and smudges.) The frames will normally need to be wiped over with a towel, which both cleans them and prevents water running onto the next windows below.
If French/Colonial windows aren't hated enough by window cleaners, louvres almost make them look easy.
There are certainly a variety of techniques that all work on louvres, but the professional is looking for good results with speed.
My preferred method is this:
Lead-lights are harder to clean the older they are. This is because the lead which joins the glass together decays over time, and releases a fine, whitish dust.
The best way I have found to clean lead-lights is to gentlywash them with the regular window cleaning washer, dry with a towel, then clean the smudges with a detailing cloth. Don't assume you've done a good job until you've done both sides! They can be deceiving.
Always be careful of any loose or cracked glass panes. This is pretty common, so just go around them.
Please feel free to contact me for an other questions. For a demonstration of how great your windows could look, make a booking now.