Window Wipers the preferred commercial window cleaner in Perth. Cleaning windows can be a straightforward process or a highly complex. It’s important for us as professional commercial window cleaners in Perth to consider all the tools of the trade allowing us access to challenging areas of a building and ensuring the site is safe for our staff who are completing the window cleaning and safe for pedestrians and traffic to get the job complete on time and on budget.

We have put together a blog article  highlighting all the tools of the commercial window cleaner in Perth. For more information on our commercial window cleaning services and applications, please visit links below from our website.



Window Wipers, Commercial Window Cleaner Perth

In this article we will cover:

  • Commercial Window Cleaning in Perth
  • High Rise Window Cleaning Tools
  • Advantages and Applications the tools are used for.


Commercial window cleaning Perth

Tools of the Commercial Window Cleaner in Perth- Rope Access

At Window Wipers we pride ourselves on being a specialised high rise rope access window cleaner in Perth.  If we have access to certified and inspected anchor points installed on any high rise building we can provide rope access window cleans.

When conducting rope access window cleaning on high rise buildings there are key safety factors that need to be considered prior to commencing work. All our high rise window cleaning rope access technicians are qualified and trained to IRATA standards.

Prior to commencing rope access window cleaning tasks, a job checklist needs to be completed.  See below an example of our high rise rope access window cleaning checklist.

Basic Checklist for High Rise Window Cleaning Rope Access Technicians

  1. Have all staff allocated for the job appropriately trained.
  2. Do you have enough rope access equipment and personnel to do the job safely?
  3. Do you have a supervisor on the job? Ie IRATA
  4. Do you need a permit?
  5. Have you done the appropriate inductions on this building?
  6. Have you conducted a risk assessment and method statement?
  7. Have you inspected the equipment?
  8. Have you inspected the ropes, and do you have enough rope to reach the ground?
  9. Do you have a rescue plan in place?
  10. If you are working outside, is the wind and weather acceptable?
  11. If you are working inside, is there enough light?
  12. Do you have means of communication at all times e.g. visual, radio, etc?
  13. Are all window cleaning rope access technicians working in pairs?
  14. Have you considered if you need extra edge/rope protection while descending?

Rope Access Window Cleaners Perth

High Rise Window Cleaners Perth

Commercial Window Cleaner Rigging Checklist:

  1. Have the anchor points been checked test and tagged certified and recommended for rope access?
  2. Has the testing organisation filled in the installation plaque?
  3. Is there a backup system in place?
  4. Are your anchors sharing the load equally (taking stretch and angles into account)?
  5. If your anchors are further apart than 2m, have you taken steps to back-up the anchors to mitigate an uncontrolled swing?
  6. Are your rigging angles lower than 90 degrees?
  7. If your angles are higher, have you taken steps to back-up the anchors?
  8. Are your knots appropriate and well-dressed?
  9. Can your knots be loaded without touching on the edge or another object?
  10. Have you put knots in the ends of the ropes?
  11. Have you bundled them for safety purposes e.g. wind
  12. If your drop is longer than 100m, is it possible to install re-belays?
  13. Do you need to install any deviations, re-belays or extra ropes to comfortably reach the worksite?
  14. If your deviations mean deviating further than 2m (or 15 degrees), have you taken measures to back-up the deviation?


     Working at Height window cleaners PerthHigh Rise Window Cleaning in Perth

Commercial Window Cleaner Edges Checklist:

  1. Any person within 2 m of an unguarded the edge should be appropriately secured.
  2. Do the ropes pass over any sharp edges (including lower down the drop)?
  3. Can you deviate or re-rig the ropes to avoid these edge/s? If not, have you adequately protected the ropes against the edge/s?
  4. Do you need to take extra rope protection with you for sharp edges lower down?


Commercial Window Cleaner Safety Checklist:

  1. Have you barrier-ed-off the working area below?
  2. Is your exclusion signed, or do you need a spotter to keep people out?
  3. Have your team performed this work before, and do they know what is expected of them?
  4. Have you performed a toolbox meeting before you start?
  5. Have you performed a buddy check?

Many of these tasks take place automatically by our commercial window cleaners due largely to their training. But from the readers point of view it is important to note that when we conduct the window cleaning whether it is on a city high rise / multi storey or a lower rise building. These are the questions we need to consider before and during the window cleaning process.


Anchor Points for Commercial Window Cleaning Use. 

All commercial window cleaners working on the job need to be safe when working at height, anchor points are  installed to prevent fall fatalities. The are 3 types of anchors or fall restraints which relates to the type of work being complete by our professional commercial window cleaners.

An anchor point is a looped bolt capable of being secure to a roof or elevated work area that is designed to protect the user from a fall. There are several types on anchor points, one of which is an abseiling anchor.

This type of anchor is designed to take the load of the window cleaning technicians at all times.


The Fall Arrest Anchor Points for Commercial Window Cleaning Use.

A fall arrest anchor on the other hand, is a type of anchor that is designed for if a window cleaner is in free-fall. It ‘arrests’ there fall mid-air and prevents impact at a lower level. The anchor is designed to bend to lessen the impact.

A Static line system is a permanent or temporary safety line from point a to point b on a roof that provides effective access and fall prevention.

To find out more information on safety at – click here


Tools of the Commercial Window Cleaner in Perth – Water Pole

The commercial window cleaning industry over the last few years has been (surprise surprise) a very proactive and innovative industry. The water pole is a tool that allows that us to clean a high rise / multi storey commercial or residential building from the ground.

In the past many of these buildings would have been cleaned with very tall ladders, putting many people at risk.  This innovative tool is known by several names, depending on mostly where you reside in the UK for example it is called reach and wash and here in Australia, we call it a Water Fed System. The name describes what it does is reaches and washes the window and the other describes how it works pumping purified water that is fed through the system up into a pole and that water is pumped into a brush head that cleans the window.

At Window Wipers, a Perth based commercial window cleaning specialist in Perth with 25 years looking after commercial high-rise/ multi storey, low rise and even single storey buildings we simply call it a water pole.

We have heard of companies cleaning 5 and 6 storey buildings with this equipment. However, at Window Wipers it is our policy to do a maximum height of 4 storeys, this way it guarantees quality and eliminates the risk of the water pole becoming less controllable on high rise and multi storey buildings. Any building above 4 storeys we prefer to Rope Access or using EWP. (Elevated Work Platform).

The Water Pole work’s by purifying the water. Tap water is full of sediments and minerals. It is these impurities that cause spotting and streaking when tap water is left to dry on a surface of a window. The intensity of these impurities varies and in different Perth suburbs where the impurities can be higher the water fed pole system purifies this water.

Our commercial window cleaners in Perth purify their water by passing it through a series of filters and resins, making use of processes like reverse osmosis and deionisation. This purified water then runs directly into a special hose which feeds through a telescopic carbon fibre pole and out through a brush head where jets of purified water come out through the brush head to help wash the windows.

The windows still must be thoroughly cleaned, the window cleaning technician scrubs and rinses away any dirt. Because the cleaning process has used pure water the windows can then be left to dry naturally, with a perfect, crystal clear finish.

Our commercial window cleaners know to regularly test the quality of the water with a TDS meter or a (Total Dissolved Solids meter) looking for a of zero reading. Once all the impurities have been removed from the water, you no longer need soaps or squeegees to remove the dirt on the glass. Pure water that has a TDS reading of zero is extremely good at removing dirt. Pure water attracts any dirt on the glass and with the right technique removes it effectively.

The water pole system is a very flexible tool and can be set up as a backpacks, on Trolleys, a trailer and even in  Van. Other applications for the water pole are solar panels, window frames, skylights and high angled windows.


Commercial window cleaning perth


Water poles allow window cleaners to clean windows without the use of harmful soaps or chemicals making the process more streamlined and environmentally friendly which is a huge plus.

Water fed equipment provides a better clean most of the time over traditional window cleaning methods. Pure water cleaning uses only water that is purified. Any impurities such as dissolved solids such as minerals, salts, metals, etc. have been removed from it, leaving the window spotless and shiny.


Tools of the Commercial Window Cleaner in Perth – Squeegee and Mop (applicator)

The hand-held window squeegee is the basic tool for us commercial window cleaners. This has a handle and a channel, the channel houses a thin rubber blade that’s used to remove the soapy water from a glass surface. A soapy water solution acts as a lubricant and breaks up the dirt, then the squeegee is used to draw the dirt off the glass leaving a clean surface.

There are many brands and types of squeegees that are available to the commercial window cleaner. Many window cleaners have a strong preference for their own brands and use the squeegee in a variety of ways that gets the job done in their own way.

Window Wipers is Perth’s commercial window cleaning specialist in Perth, we use several different squeegees for various purposes. For example, we use the one below for our high rise rope access team whilst they are abseiling because it has the mop and the squeegee as one tool. This is preferable because when we work at height you need to have a lanyard on our tools if you had both a mop and the squeegee separately in the bucket the would constantly get tangled causing too much time bring spent untangling them.


Rope access window cleaning Perth  Window cleaning in Perth

Some of the squeegees we use at Window Wipers the commercial window cleaner specialists in Perth are:

Wagtail – Squeegee


Mops or Applicators

The other tool that goes hand in hand with the squeegee is the mop or also known as the applicator, it applies the soppy water to the window and allows the window cleaner to scrub any stubborn marks off the window they have the same variations as the squeegee.


Unger – Squeegee and    mop/applicator

Ettore – Squegee and mop/applicator


Wagtail -Squeegee and mop/applicator

Extension Poles

An extension poles is a telescopic pole that can unfold to many metres in length with a specially designed head which allows the user to attach either an applicator (mop)or squeegee to the pole . The user can then dip it into a bucket of window-cleaning solution. Adjust the height of the pole and reach the specific windows being cleaned.

Commercial Window Cleaning in Perth


Tools of the Commercial Window Cleaner in Perth Trade – EWPs (Elevated Work Platforms)

Elevating work platform is a work platform machine that can be elevated to work on overhead locations. There are many types of EWPs the most commonly used for commercial window cleaners are:

  • Scissor Lift
  • Boom lifts,
  • The knuckle Boom
  • Single Man lift


Commercial Window Cleaning Tools – Scissor Lift

At Window Wipers it is important for us as commercial window cleaners to use all the tools of the trade allowing us access to challenging areas of a building. The Scissor Lift is certainly one of the tools we consider as we prepare our work methodology.

A Scissor Lift is a lifting platform made to move people and equipment in a vertical direction. These lifts can be used instead of a ladder or scaffolding and are powered by either diesel or electricity. A feature of the Scissor Lift is the criss-cross metal supports that lengthen as the platform is being raised up. Thus, the name Scissor Lift.

OH&S does not require the user to wear a harness as the scissor lifts has as guardrail. Scissor Lifts also vary in size and application. The following are the types of scissor lifts and the uses:


Commercial Window Cleaning Tools – Hydraulic Lifts

Hydraulic Lifts have hand-powered or pressurised hydraulics that is engine-driven.

Commercial Window Cleaning Tools – Diesel Scissor Lifts

Diesel Scissor Lifts are driven by diesel motors they are loud machines releasing strong fumes into the atmosphere the Diesel Lifts are restricted to outdoor use for this reason.

Commercial Window Cleaning Tools – Electric Scissor Lifts

The Electric Scissor Lifts work on silent electric power. Ideal for working in environments that need no noise the Electric Scissor Lift does not emit fumes into the environment nor pollute the atmosphere. It is used for both indoors and outdoors.


Commercial Window Cleaning Tools – Rough terrain Scissor Lift

For a Scissor Lift to work and reach its height the machine must be working on flat ground otherwise the safety mechanism kicks in and will not allow the driver to elevate beyond its calculated safe height roughly around 1-2 meters. The Rough Terrain Scissor Lift has out riggers that allow the platform to readjust the level of the ground by manually or automatically lifting the scissor lift into balance. It usually is driven by diesel and therefore is predominantly used for outdoor for example on building sites

Commercial Window Cleaning Tools – Boom Lift or straight stick Boom lifts

A Boom Lift Is  a type of aerial lift, boom lifts allow for both horizontal and vertical reach. They are large piece of equipment for outdoor jobs, industrial tasks and construction projects. Boom lifts allow for a higher reach than scissor lifts but does have a smaller work platform. It has its limitation and because it only goes in a straight line it cannot angle its self to work on rooves or the top of a canopy  are mostly diesel and very noisy but hey can run on electric as well and in that mode are a lot quieter handy for early morning starts


Commercial Window Cleaning Tools – Knuckle  Boom

The knuckle boom elevated work platform is a type of articulated boom lift. It is called a knuckle boom because of its joint boom arm that enables the boom to bend. So the user can rise to the height of a required location e.g. a canopy  or wall then bend at the knuckle to work horizontally above a wall or canopy mostly diesel and very noisy but hey can run on electric as well and in that mode are a lot quieter handy for early morning starts

Commercial Window Cleaning Tools – Spider

Spider lifts are nimble, versatile lifts that are suited for many uses. … Featuring articulating booms and jibs, the lifts are easy to manoeuvre to the exact position you need them. Models up to 83 feet working height are narrow enough to fit through a standard doorway or gate, making them ideal for interior jobs. spider lifts can get into tight corners and hard to reach places. There out rigger or legs are able to stabilize and level uneven ground something other wheel driven machines can’t do.

Commercial Window Cleaning Tools – Single Man Lift

A single man lift is a compact single lift. There are various different types of single man lift available that fit easily in lifts and confined spaces. A vertical aerial work platform.


Tools of the Commercial Window Cleaner in Perth  – The Swing Stage.

A swing stage it a platform stage that is set up to be lowered or swung from the roof top of a building. It is a platform that is suspended by cables connected to motors located at either side of the stage. Swing stages are the most common type of suspended scaffolding, capable of being raised or lowered when in use. A swing stage must be designed by a competent person and must be erected by a person holding an advanced scaffolding or advanced rigging licence they will need to be able to:

  • Identify work requirements
  • Identify work procedures and instructions
  • Select and inspect scaffolding and associated equipment
  • Set up swing stage scaffolding
  • Install and commission scaffolding equipment
  • Dismantle scaffolding and associated equipment

All with Safety in mind.

Although most buildings would have either a BMU or Anchor points for Rope Access capacity, the swing stage remains a viable and important option especially if we are conducting  maintenance on a building facade as we do at Alpha FM. Our maintenance arm of our company    this is not a tool we use often in the professional window cleaning trade but is an important option which we would consider it  if all our primary options were exhausted.



Tools of the Commercial Window Cleaner Trade in Perth– BMU


There are two ways commercial window cleaners in perth can clean the external windows of  high rise commercial buildings in the city of Perth. As discussed before in previous stated one is rope access where the building has anchor points on the roof and we have the ability to lower ropes from the roof to access the outside facade on the building. See our blog on Rope Access.

Another way of accessing the external windows of a high rise commercial building is via a BMU.  BMU stands for building maintenance unit, it’s the  platform that you see going down the outside of a building connected to the roof by two metal chords this is also known as a cradle or boat; the most common term is BMU.

During the late 90s many of the buildings in Perth decommission there BMUs and chose to access the outside of the facade of a building via rope access. However, there are a number of buildings still left in the city of Perth that prefer to use the BMU rather than Rope Access.

The BMU is different on each building due largely to the fact the at each building has its own unique access requirements. Therefore, each BMU is made especially for that building and therefore the user needs to be trained on each one before use.

The BMU must be serviced on a regular basis and must be checked by the user prior to use.

The BMU allows us  the professional window cleaning company to lower themselves on a drop exactly where the windows are and takes the user back up to the top of the building on completion of that drop. The driver then moves the BMU horizontally on the roof to the next drop and it continues around the whole building in the same manner until complete.

Some BMUs move along a monorail on the roof of the building via remote control, while
others have castors and using a remote control are positioned by the operator.

The photos used in this blog show Window Wipers staff using BMUs in Perth CBD.

(In this photo we have our staff taking a photo from the ground, showing Rope Access Team abseiling the building next door to our staff in the BMU on the neighbouring building.)

In this photo we have our staff taking a photo from the ground, showing Rope Access Team abseiling the building next door to our staff in the BMU on the neighbouring building.




We hope you have enjoyed reading our article on commercial window cleaner in Perth tools of the trade. At Window Wipers we pride ourselves on being to access any building-  if you need to know more please visit our website or call Amy or Christine on 6323 2180 for any quotes.