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Showing most liked content since 11/10/17 in all areas

  1. 10 points
    so I havnt posted for a while but I've just gone thru my first year in business as a tradder. pushed over 350 solid customers now sheding many on the way as I want A solid round. gone from 4 week cleans to 5 week cleans only and don't even entertain longer cycles. i have a council contract some commercial on top of normal householders.. I've done so well since starting last August. I started using my m4 golf and now have a van best thing I ever did was start cleaning windows. I have a really good reputation and hardly advertise as my work comes from referrals I even have pole fed guys saying if u want traditional A Pane In The Glass is your man. I have recently even took on a trainee I just wanted to share this with you especially for those starting out and hopefully use as inspiration my next goal is more customers and another employee so I can focus on pushing my business further and taking a step back from window cleaning. ok I might clean a few windows to satisfy my craving
  2. 4 points
    I tried to talk to someone about my issues having a stiffy whenever I have a wee. But he just moved to a different urinal
  3. 4 points
    This advice gets on my mumma sitas. Why sod about with a backpack? Usually about 1 typical semi per fill. Perhaps 2. Then mess about refilling. Lifting 25kg of (water plus another 3 or 4k of battery pump etc) on and off your back every job. Why? Why? Why? The only sane answer is buy a van mount. Especially as you already have a van. If you're going solo operator a 500l tank will keep you in good shape for the day without the infernal messing about. The idea of buying a backpack to 'give it a try' makes no sense to me. Thats a defeatist attitude. 'I'm only getting this one in case it doesnt work out' well your already building in an exit stratagey. Might as well just quit now.
  4. 4 points
    So the van I am currently using is a cold one man system. Two things are in my mind. 1: winter's coming 2: I have some schools over half term that are minging and hot will be a big advantage. Now I know nothing about diesel or LPG conversions so please don't ask. What I do know is that cheap portable Propane shower heaters work really well. So that's the plan. Fit a DIY unit. Now this will be the 3rd one of these I have done so when all the parts arrive in the next few days i will do a real time video to show how simple it is to do in 30 min or less. For now here's the shopping list. Heater Hose. Regulator (this time I went with one with a guage to make any potential trouble shooting easier. Big azz spanner - you need this size to fit the regulator. With the exception of some PTFE tape and a couple of jubilee clips that's pretty much it. Including the propane bottle all in under £150. Video to follow as soon as parts are in stock.
  5. 4 points
    What a great idea! I’m off to Vegas early November with the wife for her 50th. She has booked a helicopter to the great canyon, a Michael Jackson show, circus de lay (or whatever it’s called), a meal in the stratosphere restaurant. But now reading this, I shall ask her if we can cancel these bookings and we’ll go out watching a local window cleaner instead! 👍
  6. 4 points
    All this talk of 'undercutting' really gets my goat. To be able to 'undercut' you first need to know how much is currently being charged and to know that the client either needs to proffer the information first or you need to ask for it. What anybody charges does not matter to me whatsoever I am so not interested you could almost say I don't give a fudge. For any job I quote (regardless of whether or not there is an existing window cleaner in place) there is the price for which I am happy to do the job. That is the only price. Now if I have quoted a house that has a window cleaner..... say for example at £10... and they are currently paying £15... I do not consider that I have undercut anyone. How do I come to this insane conclusion you ask? Simple. I have not asked what they are paying or even endavored to find out if they have a window cleaner. I have simply given a quote with which I am happy. I have not asked what they pay now nor do I care. The price I have given is the ONLY price that interests me. I have had situation where for example I have quoted £12 and been told 'our current chap only charges £10' to which my standard response is 'great, stick with him. If he ever lets you down you have my number' There is no haggle, there is no barter. The price is the price and they can take it or leave it. Entirely down to them but I do not compete on price nor 'price match' so with that in mind I can honestly say I have never undercut anyone. Not that I would actually care if I had.
  7. 4 points
    This is not a game, its business, step on their toes and take their work. I dont care about anyone else honestly, i mean theres a lot of guys on here who seem really good guys, ill still take your work if i get chance though, sorry. (except maybe @Dave B ive seen the tower block he used to live in, im not that daft)
  8. 4 points
    No I don’t but I’m pretty sure if he can make it there he can make it anywhere!
  9. 4 points
    I carry 25 ltrs of water on my trolley. I do about .5 miles a day four days of the week and get through two sets of tyres a year. Don't know if that helps. PS: One always goes bald quiker than the other. Don't know why.
  10. 3 points
    Good day today. 14 firsr cleans done and another 7 added after a quick canvass. Nice chicken kiev for supper and settling in with a cider. Just had to step out and put the bins in the garage as starting to blow about the drive already so written off the idea of any work tomorrow and going to catch up on admin. For you lads on ladders especially dont become another statistic. It aint worth the risk.
  11. 3 points
    You would need to consider your options very carefully and not be too taken in by salesmen and sales literature. As far as diesel heaters are concerned the suppliers usually use Webasto units. Ionics work slightly differently so you have to very carefully weigh up the pros and cons of each system. As with most 2 man systems the suppliers use Webasto ST90 diesel furnaces. If you do a search on the main boating forums you will see that there are numerous issues with boaters/live-a-boards using diesel heaters (Webasto are the most popular of the diesel heaters so take the most criticism.) The problem surrounds the use of red diesel. There was a boater who threatened to take Webasto to court for selling a product not fit for purpose. I can’t remember the full details but he was complaining about regular heater failure and the cost of repairs. Webasto took that same unit and ran it for 6 months on road diesel and found that the boiler was in perfect condition inside, where the same boiler, over the same period of time was completely chocked up with soot and carbon from using red diesel fuel causing it to fail. Webasto didn’t blame red diesel per say but blamed the quality of some of the fuel sold on boating marinas. Hurricane heaters were sold by Brodex at one time and they claimed their heaters worked fine on red diesel. However, an independent boat yard repairer said that they were just as bad – there weren’t many complaints about Hurricane due to the fact that there aren’t many out there to begin with. We live on the North Coast and there is a supplier selling red diesel to the fishermen. One of the window cleaners I talk to uses red diesel in his window cleaning van. He uses a hot box with an exhaust through the roof. The top of his van is black with soot all around the vent from the boiler. No wonder it clogs the internal boiler with carbon. (I have an Eberspacher Airtronic air heater in my van. It runs on road diesel from the van’s tank. It was nearly new when I bought it and it been in my van for 8 years. It’s never had a service and starts each time I want to use it in winter.) Webasto bought Eberspacher (Espar in the USA) out many years ago. Tankless Gas heaters provide instant heat where a Webasto (or Eberspacher, Mukuni, Hurricane etc) doesn’t. A Webasto is primary designed as a diesel preheater for vehicles used in cold countries and has been adapted for window cleaning. It was designed to be switched on about 30 minutes before a journey begins to heat the engine coolant up to just below normal engine running temperature. In the process it also had the electronics to switch the internal blower of the vehicles cabin on when the water got to 30 degrees C to defrost the windscreen and warm the vehicle up a bit inside. Once the water in the engine reached a certain temperature the unit kicks into half heat mode and then when it reaches full temperature it starts its power down and switch off cycle which lasts 180 secs. Start up also takes time as the unit does lots of checks before it starts up. Diesels heaters need to work. If they stop and restart all the time they won’t work well for you. If you are working on a large commercial building where the cleaners are going from one window to the next then this is fine. If you have small residential jobs scattered all over then you are going to have issues. (Ionics have a different setup to some others with pros and cons to consider). When a heater starts it draws up to 20+ amps of current in pulses over a few minutes before it settles down to about what a wfp pump draws. Window cleaners have issues with batteries failing as there aren’t many leisure batteries that will support these high power draws. (There are a few more now such as Numax who also quote CCA (cold cranking amps) on some of their leisure batteries as they have to accommodate caravan movers as well.) You do need a separate battery for the heater IMHO and you can’t rely on a Split Charge Relay to keep it fully charged. These are things you need to know and understand before you decide diesel is the way to go. The main complaints levied by window cleaners are how often the unit needs servicing, the cost of servicing and battery issues. A diesel heater heats up an internal water core including a header tank. In that internal core is one or two water to water plate heat exchangers depending on if it’s a single or twin operator system. These heat exchangers are what draw heat from the internal core and transfer it to the water going to the brush head. Most of the suppliers incorporate a mixing valve onto the heat exchanger which is used to regulate to temperature of the water going to the brush. If the window cleaners stop and talk, the furnace continues to heat the water until it gets to its full heat and starts the process of shutting the furnace down which takes 180 seconds. If the operators start to use the system just after it starts to power down, the furnace will still go through its cycle and after the cycle has finished will then start up again. By that time all the heat in the core will be used up and the operators will be using cold water. If they are doing small jobs then chances are this will be the norm – initial hot with cold ending. Now Ionics use a different system. Their window cleaning pumps work 100% of the time, even when the operator switches his pole tap off. When the pole tap is switched off the pump increases the pressure in the line to above 65psi and a pressure relief valve operates and diverts that hot water back to the storage tank. What this does is keeps the furnace running and reduces stop start. The operators will always have hot water to work with. The downside of Ionic system is that you can’t fine tune the water temperature to the brush. All Ionics gives you is a summer and winter switch that reprograms the furnace to operate at a lower temperature range. .
  12. 3 points
  13. 3 points
    Don't want to upset anyone but some are making this sound like hard work. I use GoCardless through Cleaner Planer. Now I have been having a brief conversation in PM with someone about the same stuff. Cleaner Planer when used to it's full potential (or even part there of) is a very powerful tool to have. All the others (IMO) are just diary systems. PLEASE PLEASE -- before all the 'I use this and I use that and it's the best' jump in this has nothing to do with any other software so please dont. I have been on CP for 5 years and wont consider anything else. Now with CP we have the Pro level package. We use this for two reasons. 1: The text local service is dead handy. 2: At this level you get a GoCardless integration feature for your website. (we still use the link service as well) There appears to be two ways to add to GoCardless. 1: You set up a plan in the dashboard and add clients to that and then they are on that plan (this seems to be an automatic monthly billing on certain date at certain time) 2: You client registers on GoCardless and authorizes you to collect payments-- you add their email address to their file in Cleaner Planner. How this method works (this is the one we use) is pretty straight forward. Once the worksheet is completed you submit it on Cleaner Planner. Then at the top of your debt list on Cleaner Planner there is a button 'Start GoGardless' - When you click this is it triggers the collection process for your outstanding customers. Why we like this process is that if we miss them, because the job is not recorded as a debt in Cleaner Planner the client does not get billed. Hope that clears it up a bi for you.
  14. 3 points
    My point is real straight forward. He's already got Ubix so why mess about looking for something else? IMO everything else is pretty much a waste of time for sprucing up the UPVC as Ubik does it fine. When it comes to knowing what to mix with what @Dave B you're well aware that I got a good few recipes stashed. What makes me laugh....regardless of what you use is that folk are always trying to find 'better / cheaper' i prefer to stick with what I know works (and cost but pennies) and more importantly how it works. If our OP takes on all comments here @jay198127 he's gonna have no room in the van for a sandwich as it will be too full of chem bottles of varying makes. So yes IMO everything else is a waste of time when there is a perfectly good solution in your van already. I never said anyone's doing it wrong. That's between you and your conscience mate. 😉 What you use is your business. As long as it works for you and you're happy with it carry on. But once you found something that works why bother changing it? UPVC Max is going to change the world! Look at all the errmmm..... reviews. Try ordering some today 🙄 I don't only use the Ubik, I also swear by the Unger Rub Out for the ingrained crud that needs heavy buffing out. @paul alan quite a few on here used to use virosol till switching to these new back room wonder products. Virosol is good but I personally don't like it. I find it too harsh. If it dries out it causes 'yellowing' on the plastic that is a ball ache to get out.
  15. 3 points
    I put my hand up. I am a small minded person who has built up a very successful business all on my own over the last 17 1/2 years [emoji12] [emoji23] [emoji23] Sent using the Window Cleaning Forums mobile app
  16. 3 points
    I make about £10k a year on gutter cleaning and have only ever use my generator. I only have it in the van when I know I'm cleaning them and as I do them in groups I tend not to have much water in the van.
  17. 3 points
    The way I look at is this if a sparky or a gas engineer or even a house cleaner turned up, no customer would expect them not to use their power.. If there not home I just get them to leave a power cord in a plastic bag through a window. Just post it back through when I'm done..
  18. 3 points
    Why any one would pay to franchise joe blogs domestic window cleaning is beyond me. But people are and in my opinion they are absolutely mad. Your basically paying for a job. i can understand why people pay to franchise things like Costa coffe,McDonalds and dominos for example but domestic window cleaning I just can't see why you would..
  19. 2 points
    as above we have some that i am stood at the top of of the ladder (9ft) if you going to need to buy a set of steps then a 5 run little gaints is where you need to be looking they lock at the top so lifting them over locked gates is easy , they wig wam over the gate so you then can claim up one side and down the other which touching the gate also change the angle of you brush so you can clean straight this will help too but if you running gooses necks you cant do this
  20. 2 points
    Yeah im going to be doing that. Quickloq looks so much easier than having to screw a brush on and off each time i need to change. Even going from the standard size brush to the 35cm will speed me up a bit as the extra coverage will help. Thanks for all your help guys Sent using the Window Cleaning Forums mobile app
  21. 2 points
    Thats quite a statement @Viggers. 100% assumption that I dont do a good job simply cause your old partner didnt. The method works, thats just fact so.. A: His water was not totally pure B: His first cleans were never done properly to start with. C: He's whipping round way too fast.as there of course needs to be a certain amount of water to get to the bottom. If you noticed HE was getting poor results and you pulled him up on it and he still didnt care then going seperate ways was the smart choice. If it's not for you then thats sound, you clean in whatever way you need to to get the right result. This happens to be the way I need to to make sure I have 'done a good job' Just to touch on pricing quickly.. i'm highest priced window cleaner in my area and books are always full. Anyhow. Welcome to the forum @Viggers
  22. 2 points
    If you do it properly it is a good job I have built my round mostly on recommendations and facebook where everyone recommends me If the flow is good then it is fine You do also have to use your eyes like you would with any other method
  23. 2 points
    I have had both Ionic’s and Grippatank heaters , I currently have a Grippatank heater it’s more user friendly in my opinion we have 2 hot pumps all the time , the Ionic’s one only has one hot pump and one cold one it returned some hot water to the tank all the time so it does heat up the tank water slowly but reduces the flow to the pole it isn’t really possible to adjust the % return to tank yourself,, the Grippatank one has a much better temperature variation where as Ionic’s is Either summer mode or winter it’s true they both use the same heater but work slightly differently I had my heater custom mad3 for what I wanted and am very pleased with it give olive4 a ring and have a chat he will give you honest non beast advice without the hard sell ,
  24. 2 points
    I've never liked the idea of going straight into wfp, unless you are taking over /buying an established round. The early days are slow, work doesn't come in fast at all. Having thousands of pounds of gear sitting there while you do the odd house you pick up is a waste imo. Get a ladder, squeegee, cloths etc and learn the old fashioned way and it will help you find out whether you like the game before committing too much. You'll also pick up skills that will be useful later on. That's only my opinion for what it's worth though. Personally I did trad for a few years, and backpack for a nearly a couple more. My only regret is that I didn't get a van mount or at least a decent trolley sooner once I had all my customers converted. Sent using the Window Cleaning Forums mobile app
  25. 2 points
    A trolley system works brilliantly for me and a couple of good friends I have, but thats only because we had well established compact rounds when we switched over. In addition there are often parking issues to deal with. However, compact rounds are hard to come by when starting up these days, so as you already have the van, I would say thats the way to go. A backpack and trolley can be added to your kit later on for those occasional jobs where you might find it advantageuos.
  26. 2 points
    Also depends on what type of houses or business properties your targeting. A backpack alone would be a nightmare on a round where your targeting massive property’s and big commercials.
  27. 2 points
    We did just that mate. Did a couple in the sides which were tough to avoid bits but opted for m8 bolts on those ones. It's all looking great at the moment. Sent using the Window Cleaning Forums mobile app
  28. 2 points
    Thanks for the moral support guys, feeling the love, ha ha. For clarification I drink my water standing up from a glass not on all fours with my head in a trough and butt in the air, lol. I apologise if Im making things sound like hard work but my previous job Writing speeches for Government ministers the more confusing/boring the better! Anyway, these are some links that some may find usful for using GoCardless there are a number of ways to use their services I seam to use it differently to most but it suits the way I work. Hope you get your head around it soon @Mr and Mrs window cleaner As it’s a great tool and makes life easier. https://support.gocardless.com/hc/en-gb/articles/115002228989-Overview-of-payment-types https://support.gocardless.com/hc/en-gb/articles/209700769-Adding-Customers https://support.gocardless.com/hc/en-gb/articles/115002270325-Setting-up-a-subscription
  29. 2 points
    ive lost count the number of times I've heard this, then walked away with 3-4 jobs. Tends to be older people who think that there are still "patches".
  30. 2 points
    As I sit here and read this I hear the heavenly trumpets play and angels dance and sing hallelujah. I have said this from day one, no one else pays your bills and feeds your family. No body cares if your kid are hungry tonight so why give a toss about anybody else? Hustle hustle hustle, take all the work for you! I dont care who cleans windows on a street, if i'm knocking I hit every last door (excluding crud access etc) If the window cleaner is worth his salt his clients are happy they wont switch. When someone says 'There's a window cleaner doing this street' That person probably dont even know his next door neighbors name let alone if he has a window cleaner.
  31. 2 points
    Why not? I don't give a toss about someone elses prices Whether i know or not i am still quoting my price If it happens to be slightly cheaper then so be it😂 I have come to the conclusion over the years that it is me and my earnings i need to worry about not somebody else's
  32. 2 points
    Hence my option is to go to a professional and they can also tell you if your chosen tank can be fitted to your van of choice. I have got mates and know people who know people but IMHO better to go with people who fit them on a daily basis. Sent using the Window Cleaning Forums mobile app
  33. 2 points
    I only use on line advertising or leaflets. I leaflet areas myself though. Pick and choose areas and types of property I won't to work on. Leaflet response realy does depend. Got nothing in whole areas. 2000 +leaflets. Other times I have just done say 100-200 around a new job,an picked up loads. Still get calls from leaflets dropped a year ago. Depends on how much work you need. I'm happy to grow slowly as it's all gravey on top now. Time is what will realy give you truly compact work. Longer you seen in an area the better. A good way I have found to pick up customers. If Finnished on time. Park up near the local school to do Paperwork. Possibility of being taken for a **** might be high. Depending on your facial looks. You will get walk up enquiries. Bonus is it's milf o'clock obviously ☺ 👿
  34. 2 points
    here's another one I usually break up around 15th December well did last year... the week following do a internal promotion party n rele season these customers will want nice internal windows... I run that promotion for a week and only do those offering time slots
  35. 2 points
    yea I got the idea from a very old post on one of the forums... post em n spend the next week driving round where u left em... it beats banging doors n getting rejections
  36. 2 points
    Spruce makes some very good points about the various options for financing. Ultimately any vehicle purchase is going to depreciate - and each finance / purchase option suits different customers at the various points in their business journey. We always try our best to match the finance product to the customers budget and available capital. Our contract hire funding houses are aware that we install systems into the vehicles, and due to the fact that our systems are crash tested on the basis of not being bolted into the chassis, the holes drilled into the vehicle are kept to a minimum and are thus easier to return to the original condition when returning the vehicle. The following article may help you further: https://www.grippatank.co.uk/help/systemvehiclepackagefinance/
  37. 2 points
    I just re read this. You have windows worth £1740 and you're asking £20k? That's 11.5 x value? Bit steep even by my standards.
  38. 2 points
    I’ve got an absolute rotter of a cladding/Window/fascia job to do on Monday. I’ll definitely be using some bleach on that. I’ll see if I can get a video. Either that or I’ll get @Dave B to pop round and I’ll film him. Depends who’s ugly mug you want to see.
  39. 2 points
    On the Shurflo pump I have in my office there is an arrow on each side of the connectors pointing to the direction of flow. If you run the pump (its ok to run it dry for a short time) you can easily feel which side is suction and which side is the outlet my putting your finger over the connector.
  40. 2 points
    Noisy? This is noisy... :-) https://www.dropbox.com/s/zawyrlki5fsogkt/TecbukRIFan.mov?dl=0&m=
  41. 2 points
    Be very wary of the quality of the Tulsion resin that purefreedom sells.
  42. 2 points
    Brilliant stuff well done What area are you? Im a year in business on the 1st of nov and just short of 140 customers so far all from facebook and word of mouth Thought i was doing well haha till i see this post haha Great stuff though Sent using the Window Cleaning Forums mobile app
  43. 2 points
    You may laugh but we use the bottom of gardiner back packs. Rip the tank off the box and you've got a pump, battery and controller in one. Comes with a charger too! Been running like this for three years and no problem yet. Flat out all day on the panels too.
  44. 2 points
    One of them days today. First job realised I forgot to restock been cleaned tickets. Off home to collect. Bit later got a split in pole hose. Found it when leg got wet. Stop to fix an see van is realy wet. Track down to bend after tap so leave turned off and home to fix. Dry trousers and off again. Ran over foot with trolly, got pole stuck trying to get a skylight. Slipped into a gully an had to get ladder off to get it back. Closed the back door of the van on me elbow. Endless list of jobs from wife done an I just Sat down. Now I have spilt me beer on me spliff. Think I'm just going to bed.
  45. 2 points
    Buy a tank that fits, pump, controller, reel and pole That way you will spend about 500 quid and it will work just the same as an expensive bought system Then just get a bigger tank when you upgrade vehicle
  46. 2 points
    Usually refuse one off cleans but if I get the feel that I may become a regular clean then I will do it. Got asked last week to clean a restaurant bar... hasn't ever been cleaned properly. Usually the first thing I always say is... do you want this done on a regular basis. This time for some stupid reason I just figured he would as he approached me and seemed very keen. I gave him a great price, one that could have been doubled for an initial clean because I figured I had it on the regular. 2 and half hours later, place is spotless I hand the invoice in and I say when do you want me back? To which he replied, "we will ring you". That old chestnut. He then followed that by saying they don't want them cleaned alot, followed by we have interior glass that you could do next time. Now usually I would say look maybe best you get someone else as I only do regular cleans but I'm waiting to see if he comes around. If he rings me few months from now then I'm going to give him a ridiculous quote and if he questions it then I will have my say. Honestly though I just want to tell him to bleep off but it's local and in a place where I have a block of work. Sent using the Window Cleaning Forums mobile app
  47. 2 points
    In an ideal world you don't want one off cleans but sometimes when you've just set up you have to take the money whenever you can. One good thing about one offs is that you can then canvass the area you're in and also you are very visible to neighbours when you are working and far more likely to pick the business up. Going out and making £30 pays your diesel for a few weeks.
  48. 2 points
    I have 2x Tecbuks. 1 with fan jets (use mainly for first cleans, especially good on frames) the other Hybrid (30% Boars Hair) has 2x 2mm pencils. Both excellent but the key on all my brushes is pivot fittings (I’ve also got a 4 jet Tucker and a brace of Constructor Brushes with top mount rinse bars). The speed and efficiency gained with the pivot more than makes up for the extra water that multiple jets or rinse bars may use. More water? Yes, but less time on the glass means water useage is almost the same.
  49. 2 points
    I had a call this Friday for a builders clean alarm bells started ringing when the bloke that phoned me claiming to be the site agent said the quote "had to be in that day"(he phoned at 3.30pm i asked where the job was and he wouldn't give me an address.I said "I can't and won't quote blind"but yet he still wasn't keen to give me the site address. He said he had all the info and proceeded to rattle of the number of doors and window it had(this was a big site around 300 units). The conversation went back and forth with him asking stupid questions like "how much do I think"? "And how long will it take."? To which I said that basically he must be on drugs if he thinks some one would be willing to price a job like that with out viewing it and he hung up. The bloke was so stupid he called from a viewable number which I put in to google to see if it was registered and it was. To a window cleaner.
  50. 2 points
    I'm always puzzled by 'the local going rate'. You knock on a door, offer your services and give them a price. Some will say "Oh, but my other window cleaner only charged....." So what? What someone did or didn't charge her is neither here nor there. Why should the price someone else charged be taken as the 'norm'? You knock on another door and they say "Is that all? My other window cleaner used to charge......" Ask yourself this: If you weren't a window cleaner and someone knocked on your door and offered to clean you windows how would you know what 'the going rate' is? There's no such thing. Window cleaners don't get together and discuss how much they're charging, it's each to his own. In your area (say within a 10 mile radius - that's 314.2 square miles!!) there will be perhaps a couple of hundred window cleaners. Do you know how much they all charge? Ignore 'the going rate' - in my opinion it's just an excuse for people who are afraid to ask a decent price. Decide how much you want to charge, sell your service emphasising the benefits of them using you and then give your price with conviction and confidence - if they want their windows cleaning they'll go for it.
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