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First “for money” clean on Monday - spotting during “practice”


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I have my first “proper” customer clean on Monday and have been practicing like mad on my house, families houses etc etc over the last week or so to get a feel for everything. I’m starting to get more confident which is great, I’m actually really enjoying it. 

However! I cleaned a friends house this morning as another practice, which is a pretty big house with quite a few high level windows to get used to working with the pole fully extended.

He hasn’t had his windows cleaned for a few months and afterwards, even on low level windows, there were a few with some real spotting, although it almost looked like the spots were “baked on” and almost not caused by the clean, but made more visible by it.. (or maybe they were caused by me but there was no shifting them no matter what I tried).

I buy my water currently from a place similar to a spotless water site, when I checked the tank it was 25 ppm.

Could this be the cause of the issue or can anyone recommend anything else I should be carrying in my arsenal in case this happens again? I’m wondering as the tank, pump etc is all brand new if that’s why caused the increase in ppm or maybe it was already above 000 (I have a strainer in the system). Wondering if I drain the tank and refill it might be less ppm second time around.

I have Ubik in the van and a load of microfibres but I really want Monday to go well so if there’s a technique issue or I should have any more products with me I’d love some advice!

sorry for the essay 😊

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scottish cleaning service

I carry a 6" Unger scraper with me in the van. Used it today on a second clean and got all the paint and marks off from downstairs windows. Great thing to have because on first cleans, paint, stain, varnish and things won't shift just by scrubbing. The scraper gets them moving and the brush does the rest. 😉 

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4 minutes ago, scottish cleaning service said:

I carry a 6" Unger scraper with me in the van. Used it today on a second clean and got all the paint and marks off from downstairs windows. Great thing to have because on first cleans, paint, stain, varnish and things won't shift just by scrubbing. The scraper gets them moving and the brush does the rest. 😉 

Excellent thank you, that makes a lot of sense, will order one of these this weekend.

At this point I’d rather spend a few quid for the peace of mind that I have all the bits I’ll need to not end up looking a tit! (No more than usual anyway 😂)

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scottish cleaning service
Just now, matt1458 said:

Excellent thank you, that makes a lot of sense, will order one of these this weekend.

At this point I’d rather spend a few quid for the peace of mind that I have all the bits I’ll need to not end up looking a tit! (No more than usual anyway 😂)

Order 25 spare blades with it for future use. All you need to do is spray wd40 on it after you are finished with it and the blade will last a long time, if not, then it will go rusty. I don't think there has ever been a time in my life when I've had so much spare change since starting window cleaning 3 years ago. 😉

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brianbadonde

I’ve never used PPM as high as 25, and imagine that is high enough to cause spotting.

  • Agree 3
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2 minutes ago, spruce said:

I would suggest you got back to your mates house and redo the glass only. You will probably find the glass will dry clean.

With dirty first cleans we usually give everything a good scrub and then come back and do the glass only and its fine.

If there was a problem with the water or contamination from your equipment every window you cleaned would show up spots.

At one time some new cleaners would tell the customer that it takes around 3 cleans for their windows to come up spotless. We have never agreed with this so we always made sure that the new clean was 'perfect' before we asked for payment. The was an old trad cleaner who converted to wfp. This is what he told his customers even although he was using ordinary tap water. Every time we saw him he had a new youngster working for him. I still believe he used to fire them for not doing a good job when the grant ran out and got a replacement. He's long since retired but he has left a lasting stench with people who were his customers.

There are obviously issues you can't solve. We don't get involved with silicone residue left behind on the windows or frames and we report any 'blown' windows we didn't see when quoting to the customer straight away.

 

Great idea I’ll do that in the morning, it was annoying as the others I’d done up until this morning came out well, this one knocked my confidence a little having seen the result and not really having a “reason” why to give him, he was fine of course, I’m just trying to pretend every practice clean is a real customer!

Very happy to spend the time and effort getting this right from the outset, I’d much  rather lose a few minutes per job than lose a customer per job while I’m figuring everything out!!

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2 minutes ago, brianbadonde said:

I’ve never used PPM as high as 25, and imagine that is high enough to cause spotting.

Not going to lie I was a little surprised to see it that high considering it was a buy water service.. that was the ppm in the tank, I should have checked it at the brush which I foolishly didn’t. But put it down to everything being new.

I’m going to drain the tank tomorrow and go for a fresh fill up before Monday I think, just in case.

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2 minutes ago, matt1458 said:

Great idea I’ll do that in the morning, it was annoying as the others I’d done up until this morning came out well, this one knocked my confidence a little having seen the result and not really having a “reason” why to give him, he was fine of course, I’m just trying to pretend every practice clean is a real customer!

Very happy to spend the time and effort getting this right from the outset, I’d much  rather lose a few minutes per job than lose a customer per job while I’m figuring everything out!!

Sorry, I didn't see the 25ppm. That will cause spotting. I will not work with anything above 2ppm.

 

Edited by spruce
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2 minutes ago, spruce said:

Sorry, I didn't see the 25ppm. That will cause spotting. I will not work with anything above 2ppm.

 

Right I need to get this sorted then, I was pretty disappointed seeing 25 having dispensed 250 litres, thinking about it there was a little bit of tap in the bottom of the tank that the guys that fitted everything for me had used to make sure there were no leaks etc.

This is a crazy hard water area, maybe I’ve only diluted the tap with pure hence the 25ppm.. although got an email to say its closed Monday afternoon for essential upgrades so maybe it’s a bit of both... 🤔

time to drain and refill I think

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7 minutes ago, spruce said:

Sorry, I didn't see the 25ppm. That will cause spotting. I will not work with anything above 2ppm.

 

Out of interest, is there a rule of thumb as to length of time leaving water in the tank? Probably a dumb question but does ppm increase the longer it’s stored on the van over a few days?

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1 hour ago, matt1458 said:

Out of interest, is there a rule of thumb as to length of time leaving water in the tank? Probably a dumb question but does ppm increase the longer it’s stored on the van over a few days?

Not usually. There was some water left in my tank during the shutdown and that was still 0ppm when I tested it. It had been in the tank for 7 weeks.

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Definitely the 25ppm

If cleaning windows that haven't been done for months, it's usually a good idea to clean all the frames first (with a quick go over the glass) and then once all frames clean go back to the first window you did and clean all the glass. 

Takes longer but less chance of runs, spotting etc. Thats why its a good idea to charge a bit extra for first cleans 👍

All the best with your first paying clean. You'll do fine 😁

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12 hours ago, scottish cleaning service said:

I carry a 6" Unger scraper with me in the van. Used it today on a second clean and got all the paint and marks off from downstairs windows. Great thing to have because on first cleans, paint, stain, varnish and things won't shift just by scrubbing. The scraper gets them moving and the brush does the rest. 😉 

Not our job, I stopped cleaning up after other trades years ago plenty of people get work done and the other trades don't have the sense to clean up paint or cement splashes as they are working very easy to do more before it has dried on, I took on a job last year house had been renovated brand new windows fitted and they got render on the windows and when the had resin paths put down the guy also got resin on the new windows i instantly pointed out I wasn't doing a builders clean and making myself liable. 

  • Agree 4
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47 minutes ago, JBC said:

Definitely the 25ppm

If cleaning windows that haven't been done for months, it's usually a good idea to clean all the frames first (with a quick go over the glass) and then once all frames clean go back to the first window you did and clean all the glass. 

Takes longer but less chance of runs, spotting etc. Thats why its a good idea to charge a bit extra for first cleans 👍

All the best with your first paying clean. You'll do fine 😁

The first clean always takes longer so we charge a first clean premium. If the customer turns out to be a once off then we haven't lost too much.

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As a quick update, I pumped most of what I had bought through the system this morning, then went back to the filling station and refilled, tested it as it was coming out, and then again afterwards in the tank and it’s 3ppm at the dispenser but also now staying at 3ppm in the tank.

Not perfection, but now a lot better than 25!

 

 

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Master Jedi Alejandro
20 minutes ago, matt1458 said:

As a quick update, I pumped most of what I had bought through the system this morning, then went back to the filling station and refilled, tested it as it was coming out, and then again afterwards in the tank and it’s 3ppm at the dispenser but also now staying at 3ppm in the tank.

Not perfection, but now a lot better than 25!

 

 

You getting your money back for the 25ppm? And even the 3ppm. 3ppm will work but if you're paying for it you want 0. I'd be on the phone to the company 9am tomorrow morning!

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10 minutes ago, Master Jedi Alejandro said:

You getting your money back for the 25ppm? And even the 3ppm. 3ppm will work but if you're paying for it you want 0. I'd be on the phone to the company 9am tomorrow morning!

Interestingly It’s closed for upgrades  tomorrow so I only topped up a small amount just to get me past tomorrow to then see if it drops to zero. Interestingly the 25ppm fill has disappeared from my account.

Difficult to argue it though, as I only tested it when it was in my tank that hadn’t been filled before (and had had a small amount of tap in it from the guys that installed it all checking the system).

I should have done what I did today and tested it as it was coming out of the dispenser.. which, like a numpty, I didn’t.

You live and learn I guess

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scottish cleaning service
14 minutes ago, matt1458 said:

Interestingly It’s closed for upgrades  tomorrow so I only topped up a small amount just to get me past tomorrow to then see if it drops to zero. Interestingly the 25ppm fill has disappeared from my account.

Don't think they want you to post anything about 25ppm on social media in case everyone checks their tanks. Not good for Spotless business, papers would have a field day. 😉

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6 minutes ago, scottish cleaning service said:

Don't think they want you to post anything about 25ppm on social media in case everyone checks their tanks. Not good for Spotless business, papers would have a field day. 😉

Should point out it’s not a Spotless branded site, but something very similar! I’m pretty sure the issue was my end but I’m not sure we’ll ever know. Trying to be as diplomatic as possible 😂

Either way and although it’s still not quite 000 it has made me more confident turning up to the job tomorrow which was my biggest concern!!

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