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"Benefits of Water Fed Poles for Window Cleaning: Explained"

We come across a lot of clients who ask do we use the stick with a brush on it? do we spray chemicals from a pole? Clients often say I would prefer a traditional window cleaner, the water pole doesn't clean my window properly.

We thought it would be useful to explain how and why we use them, and also to debunk some myths!

Firstly, a little about each method

The industry term is water fed pole, it is most commonly an extendable carbon fibre pole with a synthetic brush on the end of it. A pole hose is used to allow water to flow from the brush onto the window, frames and sills to be cleaned. No chemicals are required, just purified water. The brush then agitates the surface it is cleaning to remove any dirt and grime before a final rinse is performed to wash away the dirt and grime that has been removed before it is left to dry naturally by evaporation.

Traditional window cleaning refers to an applicator and a squeegee. With this method, the window cleaner needs to be within reach of the window, often meaning used of a ladder to reach the window be cleaned. The applicator is used to agitate the dirt on the window glass before a squeegee is used to essentially wipe the window clear of the applied solution. a scrim or detailing cloth is then used to wipe the edges to avoid any solution dripping down the glass. The scrim or microfibre cloth is also then used to wipe down the window frame and sill.

Which is better, traditional window cleaning or water fed pole?

This is a very common and big question. In our opinion, they both have their merits and should both be used to suit the type of window and the cleaning environment.

Safety is paramount, using water fed poles mean that we can reach upper flor windows, Velux windows, windows in awkward positions like those above conservatories and extensions without climbing a ladder. Every time a ladder is used, the cleaner is at risk of a fall from height. In 2022/2023, 30% of all work place fatalities were attributable to a fall from height. (HSE, work-related fatality figures published, 6th July 2023. Work-related fatality figures published | HSE Media Centre , 22/02/24)

That is 40 fatalities which is truly shocking. This is the main reason our window cleaners use water fed poles wherever and whenever we can. We then apply safe methods of working to use ladders as a last resort.

Water fed pole window cleaning also allows our window cleaners to thoroughly deep clean the window frames and sills along with the air vents. When done properly, no drip marks or spotting will appear once dry. Unfortunately there are the odd few window cleaners who rush and do not clean or rinse the window properly, which results in a poor quality finish. This then puts clients off having the service in the future without realising its down to inadequate cleaning as opposed to the actual method itself.

Traditional window cleaning can also leave marks if not performed correctly. Smears and missed areas can appear along with drip marks if the edges are not wiped or detailed correctly. It also takes a lot longer to clean windows traditionally as it involves moving a ladder around a property which has the potential to cause damage. Therefore the cost of traditional window cleaning is often higher than water fed pole window cleaning as it takes more time and therefore increases the labour cost accrued.

So to conclude on whether traditional window cleaning or water fed pole is better, our opinion is that they both have their merits. We prefer water fed pole cleaning but do use traditional methods for interior windows and often for older wood framed windows as these aren't always suitable for cleaning with a water fed pole.

We spend a lot of money investing in our equipment, we often purchase water fed poles and traditional window cleaning equipment from The Window Cleaning Warehouse ( and Gardiner Pole Systems (Gardiner Pole Systems Homepage) These are high quality suppliers.

Please comment with any questions you may have!


Handy Professional Services

window cleaning using a water fed pole
Window Cleaning with a water fed pole

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