January 17, 2022
Facility Manager’s Guide to Commercial Window Cleaning
As a facility manager, you have to pay attention to every single aspect of your building’s maintenance and repair, including the windows. The following information will help ensure you stay on top of your commercial window cleaning and repair needs. With all of the necessary information in one place, you should find the process of caring for your commercial windows to be more efficient and cost-effective.
Creating a Commercial Window Cleaning Schedule
One of the first things to do regarding commercial window cleaning is to create a schedule. Making a schedule will ensure that you never forget important tasks.
The Benefits of Regular and Commercial Window Cleaning
Remember that, as with any other part of the property, taking care of commercial window cleaning regularly will reduce the wear and tear on the windows. This, in turn, should expand their lifespan.
Regular window cleaning will also help ensure the property always appears presentable. This presents a good impression to tenants or customers, and it reflects well on your skills as a facility manager.
There’s also the fact that cleaning the windows regularly means that someone will have the chance to look at them. This provides the opportunity to spot damage or other potential issues with the windows and make repairs quickly.
Regularly cleaning the windows is also good for the health of everyone who goes into the building as it removes the dust and debris that accumulates on them.
Clean windows can even contribute to a boost in productivity. And also helps that there will be fewer distractions on the windows, such as giant dirt streaks.
Create the Schedule With Professionals
The easiest way to develop an effective commercial window cleaning schedule is to consult with professionals. You will likely hire a service that specializes in window cleaning to take care of the regular cleanings for you. Consult with them when it is time to create the schedule as well. Their professional insights and experience mean that they will know what tasks to include and when to complete them.
What to Consider When Making the Schedule
As you create your cleaning schedule for the windows, you will want to consider the following factors:
- Type of building – If the facility you manage is a low-traffic retail store or office, every four to eight weeks is a good interval for cleaning. If you manage healthcare facilities or a high-traffic retail space, clean the windows every two to four weeks.
- Type of business – You also need to consider the type of business and how that affects the standards of cleanliness. Healthcare facilities, for example, will require more frequent cleaning than offices.
- Building location – If your building is on a busy street or in rural areas with a lot of trees, the windows are likely to require more frequent cleaning.
- Landscaping – Depending on the landscaping of the property, you may need to clean the windows more frequently. For example, mulch beds will frequently spread debris through the air, including onto windows.
- Weather and seasons – Your windows may need more frequent cleaning in spring when blooming flowers spread pollen. You may also need more frequent cleanings if your area is rainy, as the mineral deposits left by rain can leave streaks.
When in doubt, make sure that your windows are thoroughly cleaned at least two or three times every year. This is frequently enough to remove dirt buildups and inspect the windows. However, you should be ready to increase the frequency if necessary and respect the advice of your chosen window cleaning company.
What Should Be on Your Commercial Glass Cleaning Checklist
Use the above factors to determine how frequently you need to complete various commercial window cleaning tasks. The following are some of the specific tasks you will need to include:
- Dusting windowsills
- Dusting window coverings (blinds, curtains, etc.)
- Cleaning the interior of the windows
- Cleaning the exterior
- Polishing the glass
What’s Involved in Commercial Glass Cleaning and Maintenance?
The goal of maintenance is to prevent the need for commercial window repair or replacements. One part of commercial glass maintenance is the cleaning aspect of it. That includes all of the items mentioned above. But this is not the only task involved in commercial glass maintenance.
Inspecting the Glass
One important part of glass maintenance is inspecting it. You want to look for issues like cracks, breaks, or chips. Even if you notice a small crack or break, you should still consider repairing it.
To start, chips can ruin the appearance of your glass, making the property appear less professional and well-maintained. This can deter potential customers or tenants, and it could make the property owner doubt your skills as a facility manager.
There’s also the very important fact that even a minor crack or chip can easily spread. That can lead to serious damage that you will have to fix immediately. After all, if you have a small chip, you know it needs to be fixed, but you can likely schedule it for a week or so out without concern. A large crack in the glass may require immediate attention making the repairs more expensive. At the very least, it will make them harder to schedule.
Don’t forget that damaged glass is also dangerous. If an edge is exposed, someone could cut themselves on it.
On top of that, any damage to the glass poses a security risk. This leads to a weak point that will make it easier for criminals to get inside.
Inspecting the Non-glass Components
While the main part of any window is the glass, it is not the only component. You also need to inspect the frames and locking mechanisms during regular maintenance. This is for the same reasons you would inspect the glass, including the fact that you can:
- Spot issues early so you can correct them before they worsen
- Eliminate safety concerns associated with damage
- Eliminate security concerns associated with damage
Weatherproofing the Commercial Windows
Professionals will also reinforce the seals and look for any gaps by the windows that require filling or covering.
Ensuring the windows are properly weatherproofed will help you keep the building a comfortable temperature and more energy efficient. After all, you won’t let cold air in during the winter or hot air in during the summer.
Repairing or Replacing Glass and Window Parts
Window maintenance will also involve taking care of any repairs that are necessary. If repairs don’t make sense, then you will need to replace the windows. We will go into more detail about how to tell which action to take later.
Different Types of Commercial Window Repair Options
When talking about the different types of commercial window repair options, there are a few ways to look at this. You can divide the options based on who is doing them or what part of the window is being repaired, or you can look at specific repair tasks.
Options as to Who Makes the Repairs
The main choice in terms of who will make the repairs is if you hire professionals, do the repairs yourself, or have someone on your maintenance team do it for you. It may seem cheaper to do it yourself or have someone on your team do the repairs, but this can become more expensive in the long run and the increased risk of mistakes.
You should always leave the commercial window repairs to the professionals because:
- They have knowledge and experience
- They have the right tools
- They know what materials to use
- They will make repairs properly the first time
- They will repair the windows more efficiently
- Their repairs will last longer
- You can focus on other tasks
Options as to What Parts Are Repaired and the Tasks
Because any savvy facility manager will leave commercial window repair to professionals, most people discussing options will be referring to what parts of the window require repairs or the specific tasks. The following are some of the most common issues or repairs:
- Replacing dual-pane glass
- Replacing windows on storefront doors
- Replacing sliding glass doors
- Repairing leaking windows
- Fixing or applying weather stripping and seals
- Upgrading window balance
- Installing bug or security screens
- Applying security films
- Installing new glass
When to Replace Commercial Windows and Glass
Part of handling commercial window repairs is knowing when repairs are a good option and when you need to replace the windows. It is good to be honest about when windows require replacing, as this will give you time to plan. If you put off a necessary replacement, you may find yourself having to replace them in an emergency. This will be more expensive, and you will not have the time to budget for it. In contrast, planning the replacement as soon as you know it is necessary lets you make room in your budget as well as time in your schedule.
But how do you know when it’s time to replace commercial windows or glass?
Ask the Experts
The absolute best way to tell if it is time to replace your windows is to ask a trusted expert. This is part of the reason why it is so important for facility managers to have a trusted window cleaning and repair company that they can count on.
When you have a reliable window company and have built a relationship with them, you can rely on their recommendation.
Their advice will depend on the following factors, which are also things that you want to pay attention to on your own.
The Windows Are Too Drafty
As windows and frames age, they can become draftier. If one or two windows have a minor leak or draft issue, you may still be able to make repairs. However, if multiple windows have several leaks and drafts, this is likely a sign that they are too old and need to be replaced.
Remember that drafty windows reduce interior comfort and run up your energy bills, as the HVAC system has to work harder to keep the building at a comfortable temperature.
Low Thermal Integrity
When your windows are drafty, this likely means that they also have low thermal integrity. You can measure the thermal integrity via the U-factor, which measures the rate that the window glass transmits non-solar heat flow. If it lowers too much, the windows don’t have enough thermal integrity. This can happen with too many leaks, gaps, or drafts.
More Efficient Options Are Available
You don’t necessarily need to wait for commercial window repair requirements to replace your windows. Sometimes, it makes sense to replace them if they are old enough that the energy efficiency of new units would represent a significant improvement. While that’s especially true if your old windows have drafts or air leaks, it is not a necessity.
Remember that windows with improved efficiency will lower the operating costs of the building. That can make the initial investment worth it in the long run.
They Have Too Much Wear and Tear
When windows reach a certain age, you can tell they are old just by looking at them. By the time you see a lot of visible damage, it is likely time to replace the windows. Examples of this type of visible damage include:
- Distorted, clouded, or scratched glass
- Fogged or etched glass
- Warped, displaced, or faded frames
- Shrunken seals and gaskets
You Can’t Find Affordable Replacement Parts
As your windows age, it can become more difficult to find replacement parts. If this becomes the case, then it’s worth replacing them.
They Require Frequent Repairs
Another strong indication that you need to replace the windows is if you find yourself having to repair them more frequently.
Other Building Upgrades
If you plan on upgrading other parts of the building, then it may make sense to replace the windows at the same time. While creating a more modern appearance it also helps you avoid the risk of the windows looking old and dingy when other building features have been updated.
A Change of Style
You may also want to replace the windows if they are simply no longer in a style that makes sense for the building. This could be with or without other upgrades to the building.
Why Partner With an Integrated Facility Management Company for Commercial Window Maintenance
Choosing to partner with an integrated facility management company for window maintenance reduces your responsibilities and saves you time. You can delegate the window-related tasks to the facility management company and focus on other tasks. As a bonus, the same company can also handle other aspects of facility management.
Simply put, with someone handling the day-to-day management or more time-consuming tasks, you can focus on those that require your attention or can’t be outsourced or delegated.
Overall, partnering with an integrated facility management company will:
- Improve your efficiency
- Let you take advantage of their connections
- Save you the time of researching window companies
- Give you more cost-effective processes
- Increase the lifespan of the windows
- Reduce your stress
What to Consider When Hiring a Facility Service Provider for Glass Maintenance
Hiring a facility service provider for glass maintenance requires similar considerations to hiring one of these companies to assist with any other type of property maintenance.
You want to start by thinking about what your business needs. Think about whether you want to handle some of the glass maintenance and commercial window cleaning scheduling yourself or if you want to delegate everything. Think about what other services you may need from the facility service provider as well. This way, you know what services to look for.
Check the experience and client history of your chosen facility service provider. You want to make sure that they have experience handling glass maintenance in particular, in addition to their general experience. This is also the time to check their reputation. Confirm that their clients attest in reviews that they deliver quality service and are efficient.
You should also interact with the facility service provider to confirm that they are easy to communicate with and you can see yourself working with them.
Branded Group is Here to Help
Commercial window cleaning, maintenance, and repairs are crucial aspects of a facility manager’s responsibilities. By ensuring the longevity of your windows and maintaining a professional appearance, you contribute to the building’s overall efficiency, especially concerning the HVAC system. Partnering with expert window companies to establish a cleaning, repair, and inspection schedule is a savvy move. This proactive approach allows for early issue detection and cost-effective repairs, preventing safety hazards and major expenses down the road.
At Branded Group, we can help you create a comprehensive facility management plan that encompasses your commercial window cleaning needs. Schedule a consultation today to explore how we can optimize your facility management strategy and make the most of your window maintenance efforts.