Lime and Mineral Deposits
Lime deposits represent the most common problem encountered in commercial window cleaning. It is caused most typically by over spray from sprinklers. If left unattended, it can result in permanent damaging of the windows since the mineral deposits themselves will ultimately
leach into the glass itself. Once this occurs, only the surface deposits can be removed. Once the mineral deposits have leached into the glass, the bright white deposits can be removed but you will still be left with a dull grey spotting of your windows which can only be corrected by replacement of the glass itself. To correct the problem, you need to redirect your sprinklers to avoid over spray and to regularly lime treat problem windows.
If you have a cobweb problem, then you have a spider problem not a cobweb problem. When we refer to cobwebs most people think of dusty dirty webs and abandoned webs. That is usually not the case. Active webs will look like cobwebs around commercial buildings because they accumulate an excessive amount of dirt and debris. This is usually due to the landscaping services and specifically the use of blowers. Your window cleaner can knock down these webs one day and the spider will rebuild it the next. Your landscaper will then blow debris into the web immediately thereafter creating the appearance that the web has been there for a long time. As a result, when you inspect the building only a few days later, you may think the window cleaners did not do a good job, when in fact it is simply the result of a spider problem combined with ordinary and weekly landscaping services. Remember, if cobwebs are a problem at your building, then you typically have a spider problem not a window cleaning problem.
This little gal to the left is a not so infrequent culprit – and yes she is a black widow.
Another common problem is snails. They usually are a problem where the vegetation, particularly ivy, is not trimmed far enough back from the building. The problem they create is obvious enough – long thin trails of slime across your windows. If you want you windows to stay clean, then you need to trim back your landscaping and/or eliminate the snails.
Another very common problem is landscape debris being blown onto the windows. Lawn mowers and lawn blowers are the main culprit. Making sure lawns are cut with the blower facing away from the window can help and limiting the use of lawn blowers can really help. Another method which can be used effectively is to create a rock barrier between your windows and the landscaping. This will also allow you to move your sprinklers further back from the windows and help avoid lime damage as well. Nothing will make windows dirtier faster than the use of poor landscaping techniques.
Yes, they can look cute, but it is just a matter of time before birds do what they do. There are numerous ways to control birds through ledge spikes, bird wire and even shock strips. These are all viable means for encouraging birds to visit someone else’s building - and not yours. Whatever method you choose, you should include your window cleaner in the decision making process. Some bird control methods may not be compatible with the way your windows are being cleaned. For instance, bird wire can be very fragile and if it will require removal prior to each cleaning, the cost may be prohibitive. Spikes are effective but they are unsightly and will interfere with the window cleaning process if safety lines are being used.
For our little friend in this picture, there is only one effective bird control method – that little bungalow has got to go - sorry.