To buy or not to buy that is the question...

Discussion in 'Water Fed Pole Cleaning' started by Green Pro Clean Ltd, Jul 22, 2015.

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  1. Green Pro Clean Ltd

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    When I started out (second time round) as a window cleaner, I was so broke that I borrowed a ladder from my next door neighbor and got an applicator and squeegee and some scrims 'lent' to me by a friend that is a window cleaner at a large facilities firm.

    As you can imagine the first few months every single penny I spent was done so with extreme care as there was not a penny to spare.

    Now a couple of years down the road the money is not really an issue anymore as I have a very healthy round but I (as I am sure most of you are) am always tempted by new gadgets, vans, toys etc. But are they really needed or not? If what you have is working why update it? why upgrade it? why waste money if not needed?

    I have gone from surviving on borrowed ladder and tools to having a tidy little van and a decent WFP set up that works perfectly.

    I have decided that instead of looking to buy a new WFP setup because I can I am going to develop the modest setup I now have and also stop looking at new vans and simply tune, service, and scrub up my second hand van I currently have.

    I plan to post a month by month progress on this thread that will hopefully show those new to WFP that you don't need a million pounds to get set up.

    Whilst what I have done so far was not cheap it was far from as expensive as it could have been in the world of WFP set ups.
    I will keep a running tally of set up costs here so you can see how it develops over the next year or so.

    When starting out I was driving a clapped out VW Bora on which I couldn't afford to replace the snapped N/S suspension coil.

    Now I have a 57 plate SWB Renault Trafic (the more reliable 6 speed) with 160'000 on the clock and running like a dream. Body has a few marks here and there but nothing that can't be tidied up easily enough. Cost £2200

    Traditional tools including extension ladder on the roof about £220

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    WFP Currently consists of twin 250ltr Brodex tanks (Joined to make 500ltr) braced and bolted to the chassis. 11ltr DI and 20 inch RO, pump and controller, 100 meters of 8mm microbore hoses.

    This originally came with some heavey Brodex aluminum poles that were horrid, but did me ok for a couple of months. -- Total cost second hand - £1700 (also came with a Brodex Trolley System)

    I have added a Water Works hose reel winder at a cost of £250 (a luxury item but when doing 20-30 houses per day it really does save the arm on the winder)

    The Brodex poles have been replaced with Gardiner SLX poles 18ft and 25ft (and my god by comparison they are pure heaven) Cost just about £500

    Split charge relay £17

    Just a few more upgrades and I plan to run this system till the wheels fall off or until the van hits 500'000 miles whichever comes first. (and no I don't think with a good maintenance regime that 500'000 miles is unattainable)

    Next job to be taken care of before the end of the month is to remove the entire system, dry out and reline the back of the van as it's current ply floor is sodden and has to go before it rots the bed.

    Total so far £2687 (excluding the van of course)
     
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  2. adamangler

    adamangler Wakefield Window Warrior
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    Good thread.

    Thinking along the same lines at the minute, my setup is a bit more d.i.y and a lot cheaper with a £500 51 plate scudo van BUT it all works and does the job.
    Only thinng im not happy with is the van it looks tatty and i could do it up for a 2-300 hundred or buy a slightly newer one. conundrum
     
  3. peter rogers

    peter rogers Grand Master
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    is ur van driving well adam
     
  4. adamangler

    adamangler Wakefield Window Warrior
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    yes mate, its done 290k but drives spot on. just looks tatty with a lot of niggly faults, dash display doesnt work, heaters only work on low, door locks missing, exhaust rattles, cracked rear light, driver mirror broken, seat ripped, needs paint in places etc, all fixable stuff and i can fix it just toying with idea of buying something a bit cleaner and bigger. nothing special about 2 grand but do i really need to is the question lol. I think its important to look clean and tidy also makes you feel a bit better.
     
  5. Green Pro Clean Ltd

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    So spending £2k on a newer van that will need work in a couple of years, or spending say £1k on bringing your van well up to spec and getting another couple of years from your existing van and save yourself £1k

    I see the predicament
     
  6. adamangler

    adamangler Wakefield Window Warrior
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    I know lol but my old scudo looks really ugly

    but good point green, might be better saving the money till this one blows up.
     
  7. Alien Human

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    Great post Green :)

    What option are you going for when you reline the back?

    E.g just ply floor, waterproofing?
     
  8. Green Pro Clean Ltd

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    As the system is fully watertight I am thinking of just ply line then carpeting on top to help insulation.
     
  9. peter rogers

    peter rogers Grand Master
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    adamangler i say build your round more,, save more money work hard hard and harder then around december buy a van

    u will get a great van cheaper around xmas as people sell to get money for xmas
     
  10. peter rogers

    peter rogers Grand Master
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    Green what is the hose joining the ro and filters

    looks good
     
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