How To Clean High Rise Windows: Strategies, Tools, and Safety Measures

How To Clean High Rise Windows

Last Updated on September 21, 2023

Modern cities are full of high rise buildings that require a lot of maintenance and cleaning. Amongst the many tasks, cleaning the windows is perhaps one of the most challenging. It’s time-consuming and dangerous to clean high rise windows without specialized equipment.

Cleaning high-rise windows requires specialized techniques and safety measures. For indoor cleaning, traditional methods like squeegees and microfiber cloths are effective. For outdoor cleaning, rope access and water-fed poles are recommended. Safety is paramount; hiring professionals minimize the risks. Telescopic poles with brushes are ideal for windows up to 60 feet in height.

The most significant factor in cleaning high rise windows is safety. Trying to do this without proper training and equipment can lead to serious injuries. The best way to prevent these accidents is to hire experienced professionals.

Here’s a look at the different ways and tools used to clean high rise windows, as well as the importance of prioritizing safety.

Table of Contents

The Best Methods for Cleaning High Rise Windows

High rise window cleaning is a challenging yet necessary task, and choosing the right method for the job is important.

For windows up to 60 feet in height, telescopic poles with a brush are an effective and safe option. However, for heavily soiled windows, manual cleaning methods may be needed to achieve the desired level of cleanliness.

Telescopic Poles with a Brush – Recommended for Windows Up To 60 Feet

Recommended Method for Windows Up To 60 Feet Telescopic Poles

Telescopic poles with brushes are a popular cleaning tool for high-rise windows up to 60 feet. They have many advantages over other tools – they can reach difficult areas and clean without streaks.

However, their effectiveness is influenced by factors including the type of brush, cleaning solution quality, and operator experience.

Advantages of Using a Telescopic Pole and Brushes for Cleaning High Rise Windows

  • Time and Cost Savings: Telescopic poles and brushes combined with a pure water system offer an effective and cost-saving method for cleaning elevated windows without the need for specialized equipment or manual labor. This method ensures a thorough cleaning while saving time and money. 
  • Safety Assurance: Avoid accidents and injuries by using telescopic poles to reach high windows instead of ladders or scaffolding. This added safety measure ensures that cleaning tasks can be completed without risk. 
  • Eco-Friendly: Brushing with a pure water pumping system eliminates the need for chemicals and detergents and is more environmentally friendly. This method removes mineral deposits and contaminants from surfaces, leaving them clean and streak-free. 
  • Cost-Effective: Telescopic poles and brushes require minimal training and are cost-effective for cleaning high-rise windows and hard-to-reach areas. They require no expensive equipment or extra labor. 
  • User-Friendly: Telescopic poles and brushes are easy to operate and accessible for both professionals and amateurs. Anyone can take advantage of this innovative cleaning method that ensures a thorough, eco-friendly cleaning while saving time and money.

Factors Influencing the Effectiveness of Telescopic Poles and Brushes

Several factors can impact the effectiveness of this cleaning method. Here are five crucial factors that can affect the performance of these tools:

  • Window Condition: Dirty or damaged windows can compromise the cleaning process and lead to unsatisfactory results. For the best results, assess the windows’ condition before cleaning.
  • Cleaning Frequency: Regular cleaning is crucial to maintaining the cleanliness of windows and preventing the buildup of dirt. Establish a consistent cleaning schedule to ensure that your windows remain in top condition.
  • Type of Brush: The effectiveness of the cleaning process largely depends on the type of brush used. Different surfaces require specific brushes for optimal results. Be sure to use the appropriate brush for cleaning the surface to achieve the best outcome.
  • Quality of Water: The purity of the water used in the pumping system can significantly impact the cleaning process. Impure water can leave streaks and spots on the windows, resulting in an unsatisfactory finish. Always ensure that the water used in the system is of high quality to avoid these issues.
  • Proper Technique: Proper cleaning techniques are vital for achieving the best results. Techniques such as applying even pressure, ensuring full surface coverage, and rinsing thoroughly can significantly improve the effectiveness of the cleaning process.

Manual Cleaning Methods for Heavily Soiled Windows

Microfiber cloth for window cleaning

Manual cleaning of highly soiled windows on elevated surfaces requires specialized skills and equipment. It is a critical maintenance practice for the cleanliness and integrity of buildings.

The following are some of the most commonly used manual methods for cleaning heavily soiled windows in high rise buildings:

  1. Scrubbing: This method involves scrubbing the windows using a brush and a cleaning solution to remove the dirt and grime. It is a labor-intensive process that requires a lot of physical effort, but it is effective in removing stubborn stains and dirt.
  2. Squeegee: A squeegee is a tool with a rubber blade that is used to wipe the cleaning solution off the window. It effectively removes the cleaning solution and any dirt and grime that may be present on the window surface.
  3. Microfiber cloth: This method uses a microfiber cloth to clean the window. Microfiber cloths are highly absorbent and can effectively remove dirt and grime from the window surface without leaving any streaks or smudges.
  4. Extension poles: Extension poles are used to reach windows that are located at greater heights. They are designed to extend and retract to reach windows that are otherwise difficult to access. They are commonly used in conjunction with other manual cleaning methods such as scrubbing and squeegeeing.

Safety Considerations and Professional Window Cleaners

Hiring a reputable professional window cleaning company is like having a skilled pilot navigate through turbulent skies. High rise window cleaning is risky and demands strict safety measures and specialized equipment not readily accessible to the public.

Professional window cleaners possess the needed training, experience, and tools to safely and efficiently clean windows at great heights.

They utilize specialized cleaning solutions and tools designed for various window stains and dirt to make sure their clients receive top-quality results.

Clients can be confident that their windows will be thoroughly cleaned without streaks or smudges by choosing professional services. Below, we highlight the benefits of depending on professional window cleaning services for high-rise windows.

Advantages of Professional Window Cleaning Services
1. Use of specialized equipment and tools
2. Skilled and experienced personnel
3. Guaranteed high-quality results
4. Improved safety standards

Inside Cleaning of High Rise Windows

We’ll walk you through the essential tools and techniques needed to achieve a sparkling finish on the inside cleaning of high rise windows.

With a focus on safety and effectiveness, you’ll learn the importance of using the right equipment, following step-by-step instructions, and keeping in mind some valuable tips.

Necessary Items for Cleaning Inside of High Rise Buildings

In order to make your windows crystal clear, you need the following:

  1. Towels
  2. Dry cloth
  3. Lukewarm water
  4. Gentle household glass cleaner
  5. Chamois or microfiber cloth

Step-by-step Instructions for Cleaning Windows Inside

Here, we will provide step-by-step instructions for cleaning the inside of high rise windows, ensuring a sparkling finish that will leave a lasting impression.

Step 1: Preparation: Gather Necessary Items and Ensure Safety

To prepare for cleaning the inside of your high-rise windows, gather necessary equipment like a squeegee, bucket, cleaning solution, towels, and a microfiber cloth. To protect yourself from skin irritation, always wear appropriate safety gear such as gloves, and safety glasses.

Use an environmentally friendly cleaning solution designed for high-rise windows. If you want, you can create your own window cleaner with rubbing alcohol.

Step 2: Wiping the Window Frame and Sill

After gathering all the necessary items and ensuring safety protocols, it’s time to start wiping the window frame and sill. This step is important because it removes any accumulated dirt or debris on the window surface, which could make cleaning the glass itself more difficult.

You’ll want to use a clean cloth or sponge and a mild cleaning solution to do this. Start at the top of the frame and work your way down, making sure to get into all the nooks and crannies.

Don’t forget to wipe down the sill as well, as this is often a spot where dirt and grime can accumulate. Once you’ve finished wiping down the frame and sill, it’s time to move on to the actual glass cleaning process.

Step 3: Wetting the Glass with Lukewarm Water

Wetting your windows with lukewarm water helps to loosen any stubborn dirt or grime that might have accumulated over time, especially on high rise windows that are exposed to various environmental factors.

Using lukewarm water is vital to avoid glass expansion or damage caused by hot water. Ensure that the water is clean and free of impurities that can leave streaks or marks on your windows.

After wetting the glass, use a specialized window cleaner or soap solution, together with a squeegee or any other cleaning tool, to further clean your windows.

Properly wetting your windows will help remove all the accumulated grime and dirt, leaving your windows looking crystal clear.

Step 4: Applying Glass Cleaner and Gently Scrub

Now it’s time to apply the specialized glass cleaner and gently scrub the surface to remove any stubborn dirt or grime.

Choosing the right glass cleaner is crucial and it’s important to opt for a product specifically designed for high rise windows as they are more effective. To apply the cleaner evenly, you can use a spray bottle or any other application tool of your choice.

Applying Glass Cleaner and Gently Scrub

You have to be careful with the cleaning tool since using the wrong one can damage the glass. Microfiber cloths or squeegees are the perfect tools for this job as they are gentle on the glass but still have enough power to remove dirt and grime.

While scrubbing the glass, use gentle, circular motions to avoid scratching or damaging the surface. Once you have cleaned the entire surface, thoroughly rinse it with lukewarm water to remove any remaining cleaner.

Step 5: Drying and Polishing the Glass

To achieve a streak-free and shiny appearance, the final step in the high rise window cleaning process is drying and polishing the glass surface.

Use a microfiber cloth or squeegee to remove any remaining water or cleaner from the glass surface, starting at the top and working downwards to avoid streaks.

Polish the glass in a circular motion to eliminate any residue and ensure an even finish. Utilize a dry microfiber cloth to conclude the process, guaranteeing that the windows are completely dry and gleaming. Remember, this step is crucial in achieving flawless results.

Tips for Inside Cleaning

Here are some helpful tips for you when cleaning high rise windows from the inside:

  1. Avoid using abrasive materials or harsh chemicals, as they can easily damage or scratch delicate surfaces.
  2. Use only lint-free or microfiber cloths to wipe away any dust or dirt gently.
  3. Clear away debris and cobwebs before wiping the surface with a damp cloth.
  4. Work in small sections to ensure a thorough clean, without leaving streaks or smudges.
  5. Polish the surface with a dry, lint-free cloth to achieve a streak-free shine.

Remember, maintaining the interior surfaces of a tall building’s transparent enclosures requires careful attention and gentle care. Avoid harsh substances and use gentle, deliberate movements to keep these surfaces looking their best.

Cleaning the Outside of High Rise Windows

We’ll go over important safety precautions and step-by-step instructions for cleaning high rise windows. We’ll also discuss the limitations of outside cleaning methods and the importance of regular maintenance to keep high rise windows clean and long-lasting.

Cleaning Options for Outside Windows

When it comes to cleaning the outside of high rise windows, there are 5 main methods to choose from:

  1. Telescopic window cleaners
  2. Ladder or scaffolding
  3. Robotic window cleaners
  4. Magnetic window cleaners
  5. Hiring a professional

Safety Precautions for Cleaning Outside Windows

Using appropriate equipment is critical to ensure the safety of individuals who clean the exterior of buildings at elevated levels. One preferred tool is the extendable water-fed or telescopic cleaning pole, made of lightweight materials and extending up to 70 feet to reach tall buildings without ladders or scaffolding.

Safety Precautions for Cleaning Outside Windows

Workers should use a safety harness and anchor point, both of which are crucial personal protective equipment for protection against falls. Before use, the harness and anchor point should be inspected to ensure they’re in good condition and functioning correctly.

The anchor point must be sturdy enough to support the cleaner’s weight, and the safety harness should fit correctly to avoid any risks of misuse.

Step-by-Step Instructions for Cleaning Outside Windows

High rise windows can be tough to clean, especially if you don’t prepare properly. Before you start, you gather all the necessary items, such as a ladder, safety harness, and cleaning supplies.

The process involves:

  1. Wetting the glass with water
  2. Applying glass cleaner and dish soap
  3. Scrubbing and rinsing the glass
  4. Finally, drying and inspecting for streaks.

Step 1: Preparation – Assess Safety and Gather Necessary Items

To prepare for window cleaning, you must evaluate the safety and gather necessary items. Always inspect the building and surroundings for factors like height, wind speed, and weather conditions.

Use appropriate safety measures when necessary. Equipment required includes a stable ladder, squeegee, bucket, cleaning solution, and scraper. Wear gloves, goggles, and non-slip shoes for safety.

Step 2: Wetting the Glass with Water

To clean glass, it’s important to wet the surface with clean water to help remove debris. This step is essential when cleaning high-rise windows since it dissolves dirt and dust.

Using a spray bottle or hose to apply water evenly over the entire surface is effective. Make sure to only use clean water without any chemicals or contaminants to avoid streaks.

It’s crucial to ensure all areas of the glass remain wet during the process to avoid any spots or residue. Wetting the glass is the first and necessary step to achieve a spotless, streak-free finish.

Step 3: Applying Glass Cleaner and Dish Soap

In the following step, the glass surface is treated with a glass cleaner and dish soap mixture to dissolve further and remove any remaining debris. This combination is particularly effective in breaking down stubborn stains and marks that may have been left behind after the initial water rinse.

The dish soap has a degreasing effect, which helps to eliminate any oily residue that may have accumulated on the surface. Meanwhile, the glass cleaner contains a blend of chemicals that aid in dissolving mineral deposits and other tough grime.

To apply the solution, a squeegee is used to spread the mixture evenly across the surface of the glass. The cleaner is then left to sit for a few minutes to allow for maximum absorption.

Afterward, the squeegee is used again to remove the solution, along with any dirt or debris that the cleaning process may have loosened.

Step 4: Scrubbing and Rinsing the Glass

When you’re scrubbing and rinsing glass, it’s essential to use a brush with soft bristles and move in a circular motion. This is important in preventing scratches and making sure every part of the glass is thoroughly cleaned.

Next, you should rinse the glass thoroughly using a bucket of water or a hose and squeegee to get rid of any residue or soap that could cause streaks and hinder your view.

You can then leave the glass to air dry or use a soft cloth or squeegee to get rid of excess water. It’s important to remember to use a soft-bristled brush and rinse the glass thoroughly in order to ensure a crystal-clear finish and prevent any scratches or marks.

Step 5: Drying and Inspecting for Streaks

To achieve a flawless, crystal-clear view of the world outside, it’s crucial to dry the surface of the glass with a soft cloth or squeegee. Leaving moisture on the glass can cause unwanted water spots and streaks.

When drying the windows, carefully remove all moisture from the surface. Thoroughness is key. Don’t leave any water droplets behind.

Inspect the windows for any signs of streaks or residue after drying. Check for areas that might need additional attention by inspecting the windows in natural light.

If streaks or residues are present, use a clean cloth or squeegee to remove them and ensure the windows have a perfect finish. Remember to be mindful and take care when drying and inspecting to achieve the best results.

Limitations of Outside Cleaning Methods

If you’ve tried outside cleaning methods like water-fed poles or pressure washers, you may have encountered some of their limitations. Here are some reasons why hiring professional window cleaners might be a better option:

  • Stains: Stubborn stains and mineral deposits can accumulate on windows over time, and outside cleaning methods may not be able to remove them effectively. Professional cleaners have access to specialized equipment and cleaning solutions designed to tackle even the toughest stains, leaving your windows clear and pristine.
  • Streaks: Outside cleaning methods can leave streaks or water spots on your windows if not properly applied or rinsed off. Professional cleaners know how to apply solutions to achieve the best results without leaving unsightly streaks or spots.
  • Efficency: Professional window cleaners have the necessary training and experience to perform the cleaning process safely and efficiently without damaging your building or putting themselves or others at risk of injury.
  • Maintenance: Maintaining the appearance and value of your property is essential, and clean windows can make a big difference. By relying on professional window cleaners, you can be sure your high-rise windows are properly maintained and looking their best.

Alternative Cleaning Methods and Tools

High rise window cleaning used to be risky, needing specialized equipment and skilled workers. Now, thanks to advances in technology and cleaning techniques, the process is more efficient and safer.

Alternatives like vacuum cleaners, water-fed poles, squeegees, and cleaning solutions have revolutionized high rise window cleaning.

Vacuum Cleaners and Brooms for Initial Dirt Removal

To effectively remove initial dirt from elevated surfaces, vacuum cleaners and brooms are the ideal tools. These tools are crucial in preparing windows for further cleaning by eliminating dust, cobwebs, and leaves.

Vacuum cleaners are especially useful in getting to hard-to-reach corners and crevices, where dirt generally accumulates. They can also be used to clean the frames and sills of the windows, often left unattended but serve as the basis for overall cleanliness and appearance of the building.

Brooms are the go-to tool for sweeping away dirt or debris for larger surfaces like window panes or walls. In some instances, broom cleaning proves more efficient than vacuuming for dirt that may be too heavy or sticky for the vacuum.

Using these tools for initial dirt removal presents potential hazards that should be considered, such as wearing protective gear, like gloves and goggles, to avoid injuries or exposure to dangerous substances.

The right broom or vacuum cleaner type should also be selected for the job, considering factors like surface height, angle, and texture.

Additionally, professionals must understand these tools adequately, including the proper handling and maintenance.

Modern Gadgets for High Rise Window Cleaning

Modern technology has brought about incredible gadgets that make cleaning elevated surfaces efficient and safe.

One of the most popular devices for high rise window cleaning is the telescopic pole. This long, extendable pole can reach several stories high, making it easy to access and clean windows that are typically difficult to reach.

With various sizes and materials like aluminum, carbon fiber, or hybrid materials, telescopic poles are lightweight and straightforward to handle. They provide different attachments like squeegees, brushes, and scrubbers, which can be changed according to the cleaning task.

Robot window cleaners are another popular high rise window cleaning gadget. With the help of suction, these automated devices clean windows using programmable patterns, brushes, and squeegees without human intervention.

Especially useful for big commercial buildings with a lot of windows, they reduce labor costs while making cleaning safer.

For residential buildings, magnetic window cleaners are becoming increasingly common. Two magnetic pads are attached to each side of the window, so cleaners can move the tool attached to one pad while the other pad follows on the other side. Magnetic window cleaners are compact, easy to store, and ideal for home use.

magnetic window cleaners

These innovative and advanced gadgets for high rise window cleaning have transformed the cleaning process, making them quicker, safer, and more efficient.

How Do You Clean Outside Windows Without Water?

Want to get spotless windows without using water? Professionals use a squeegee to achieve this, and you can too. This tool does all the work – cleaning, wiping, and buffing at once, making it ideal for outside windows. It reduces the need for water and prevents water dripping around.

Start by using a vacuum or a soft-bristled brush to remove any loose dirt or debris from the window’s surface. After that, apply some cleaning solution to the window.

Hold the squeegee and start wiping the solution off the window’s surface. Begin from the top, wiping down in a straight line. Remember to clean the squeegee blade after every pass to avoid leaving streaks behind. 

Finally, use a clean and dry cloth to buff the window surface until it is spotless and clear. This way, you can easily have a water-free and beautiful view outside your windows.

We have already reviewed the best window squeegees that will work for any window. Check them out to get the most flawless clean windows without using water.

When Should I Clean My Outside Windows?

It’s best to clean on a cloudy day or in the morning when the sun does not shine directly on the windows.

Direct sunlight can cause the cleaning solution to dry quickly, leaving those frustrating streaks on your windows. These streaks can be a significant issue, particularly in high-rise buildings. They can be caused by the cleaning solution, the squeegee or even the cloth used for wiping.

Remember, the location of the building can influence the frequency at which you need to clean your windows.

In polluted or dust-heavy environments, it may be necessary to clean windows more often. Additionally, buildings near the coast are exposed to minerals and salt from the ocean, making cleaning more challenging.

Considering the surrounding environment and location is vital when deciding on the optimal time for cleaning.

How Often Should You Clean Your Outside Windows?

Homeowners and tenants should aim to clean their exterior windows at least two to three times a year to make sure they stay free of dirt, dust, and other pollutants.

If you live in a heavily polluted area, such as near busy streets or factories, you may need to clean your windows more frequently to maintain their appearance and longevity.

Weather conditions can also play a role in how often you should clean your exterior windows. If you live in an area with heavy rainfall or strong winds, debris can accumulate on your windows, leading to damage over time.

Dry and dusty areas may also require more frequent cleaning to prevent dust and dirt from building up.

A Safe, Efficient Way to Clean High-Rise Windows

High rise window cleaning may seem daunting and expensive, but the risks involved justify investing in professional services or equipment.

Prioritizing safety and hiring experienced professionals can save lives and prevent costly accidents. Utilizing tried and true methods and advanced techniques ensure a clean and safe environment.

So, remember always to prioritize safety and seek out the expertise of experienced professionals when it comes to high rise window cleaning. Protecting your building’s occupants and those involved in cleaning is always worth the investment.

How To Clean High Rise Windows: Strategies, Tools, and Safety Measures

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