Sunday 31 July 2011

Skyscraper News

Mixing business with pleasure - David Graham starts his descent from the top of Customs House.
Broom with a view - rock climbers love their cleaning jobs: Most people dream of working their way to the top. But it’s the exact opposite for a group of Canberra window cleaners. The 14 employees of Touchdown Building Service spend their workdays cleaning the exterior of Canberra’s largest buildings – and the job isn’t done until they hit terra firma. The army of thrill-seekers conducts all manner of highwire activities, from cleaning windows to installing birddeterrent spikes. The type of job isn’t important, as long as it involves dangling precariously several metres above the ground.

And the views are to die for. Surprisingly, Touchdown Building Services spokesman David Graham described the job as a ‘‘stress free’’ way to make a living. Mr Graham said the majority of the industrial window cleaners are rock climbers seeking to mix business with pleasure. ‘‘The scare factor is what people think when they see us working, but it doesn’t worry us,’’ Mr Graham said. ‘‘[We] see people through the glass at their desks and we’re glad we’re on the outside of the building. It seems to give [the office workers] a bit of a thrill, it must take them out of their mundane work routine.’’

Mr Graham said Canberra had a number of large buildings that require cleaning about twice a year, meaning there is always plenty of work for the adrenaline junkies. He said the design of modern buildings meant they required cleaning by abseilers. ‘‘The architects who design these large buildings don’t stop to think about how to clean it, birds nesting, and stuff like that.’’ But the job isn’t as easy as just hanging from a rope. Each industrial window cleaner must complete a week long Australian Rope Access Association course before they are hired.

One World Trade Center at Ground Zero rises up into the air March 9, 2011 in New York City. Construction continues at the Ground Zero site on the signature skyscraper, with workers up to nearly sixty floors of the building's planned 104-story height.
A view of the West Side Highway is seen from near the current top of One World Trade Center at Ground Zero March 9, 2011 in New York City. Construction continues at the Ground Zero site on the signature skyscraper, with workers up to nearly sixty floors of the building's planned 104-story height.
A general view of the Shard building on January 13, 2011 in London, England. The Shard will be the tallest skyscraper in the European Union on its completion scheduled for 2012, standing at 1,016 feet.
The moon rises behind the Burj Dubai, the world's tallest skyscraper. The Burj Dubai skyscraper stands over 800 meters (approximately 890 yards) and is currently the tallest structure built by men.
New highrise office buildings and hotels, many of them still under construction, stand illuminated in the new City Center and West Bay district at sundown on October 24, 2010 in Doha, Qatar.
Chicago-based firm Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architecture recently announced that it has won an international competition to design the Wuhan Greenland Center,which will likely be China’s third-tallest building,and the fourth tallest in the world,when completed in about five years at 606 meters (1,988 feet) high. Construction is scheduled to begin this summer in Wuhan near the meeting of the Yangtze and Han rivers. A project of the Shanghai-based Greenland Group,the 119-level Wuhan Greenland Center will be comprised of about 300,000 square meters of floor area, including about 200,000sm of offices,50,000sm of luxury apartments and condominiums,a 45,000sm five-star hotel, and a 5,000sm,27-meter-tall private club with spectacular views at the tower’s penthouse level.
Still under design, Wuhan Greenland Center features a uniquely streamlined form that combines three key shaping concepts—a tapered body, softly rounded corners and a domed top—to reduce wind resistance and vortex action that builds up around super tall towers. The building’s extremely efficient aerodynamic performance will allow it to minimize the amount of structural material (and its associated embodied carbon) needed for construction. The tower’s three corners rise from its tripod-shaped base and taper upward, culminating in an arched tip above the dome at the top. The corners will be of smooth curved glass,contrasting markedly with the more textured curtain wall cladding the body of the tower. The curtain wall will enclose a composite concrete core with steel framing. Apertures in the curtain wall at regular intervals will assist in venting wind pressure against the tower; the apertures will also house window-washing systems and air intake and exhaust systems on mechanical floors.

Saturday 30 July 2011

Professional Window Cleaning Service - Save Yourself Time

Read Testimonials from 100 other Thrilled WCR Customers!
Angie's Advice: DIY is fine, unless you undervalue your time: It's the dirtiest of dirty jobs, and Connie LaRocco has no interest in doing it. So once a week, it's worth it to the Greenwood resident to pay about $10 for someone else to do away with the doo. Specifically, dog doo. "I'm older, and I have back problems," said LaRocco, "so I hired someone to do it. It's nice to know that it's done."

Often, homeowners assume the cost of hiring a pro for a tedious task can't be justified. Really, they're undervaluing their own time, as well as the stress relief even a little help can offer. By hiring a professional to tackle those tasks, families can spend more time together and less on jobs like housecleaning, lawn mowing, window washing and, yes, even cleaning up after your dog.

While most homeowners can keep up with basic tidiness, Jim Alford, owner of Mr. Clean Cleaning Service in Indianapolis, said his service is designed to clean areas homeowners might overlook, like air return vents, light bulbs, blinds, door jambs and cabinet fronts. According to a recent Angie's List survey of housecleaners in Indianapolis, the average cost per cleaning is about $30 to $40 per hour.

"Spending the money to have your home cleaned is really an investment (in) your family," said Alford. "I have heard over and over again how much (customers) appreciate knowing that when they come home from work and walk into their home that it will be spotless; the job is already done; and they can sit and relax."

Taylon Sandlin, owner of Skybright Window Cleaning in Indianapolis, estimates it would take most homeowners a weekend, if not longer, to clean their windows, and the result still would not be the same as hiring a professional who has the proper tools and training. The average price for an inside-and-out window cleaning, which includes wiping the sills, tracks and screens, is about $200.

"We can clean that entire house, including the tracks and every other nook and cranny, in just over two hours," Sandlin said. "The time savings is huge, but safety is probably even more important, primarily in regards to using a ladder."

Lawn care is another task that eats up a lot of precious summertime. Few homeowners enjoy the sweat and mess, keeping the gas can full and maintaining the mower. Leaving the mowing and trimming to the experts costs on average about $35 per mow and frees up weekends for something more enjoyable.

If you don't hire a reputable, reliable professional though, you'll likely add to your stress level rather than reduce it. There are plenty of companies whose business it is to take on your chore list. Budget the cost of hiring a professional, then do your homework to find someone with a good reputation who will make your life easier. Angie Hicks is a Fishers resident and founder of Angie's List, a national provider of ratings in more than 500 categories of service.

Friday 29 July 2011

Window Cleaners - Free Flyer Creator! Today Only

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Thursday 28 July 2011

Crazy Gunman Waves Pistol At High-Rise Window Cleaners In NYC

Police bring suspect into the 13th Precinct after incident where a gunman barricaded himself in an apartment.
NYPD Arrests Elderly 'Hoarder' Who Threatened Window-Washer With Gun In Flatiron District: A dispute led an elderly man to allegedly brandish a gun at a window-washer working outside his Flatiron District apartment this afternoon, a police source told The Huffington Post. The window-washer called 911 after climbing down the scaffolding and a small army of police officers arrived on the scene moments later. The cops then asked the assailant to come outside the apartment but he refused.

A standoff ensued for an hour and a half, during which time the NYPD shut down E. 22nd Street between Park Avenue and Broadway, and warned residents in nearby buildings to stay inside and keep away from windows. Snipers were posted on rooftops. Emergency units eventually broke down the man's door and arrested him without incident. Police have not yet released the man's name.

The New York Post reports that he was 69-years-old and was a "hoarder" who hadn't left his apartment for 30 years.  An employee at neighboring Polaris Nail and Spa was scared and told reporters that the elderly tenant "looked crazy" and was "shaking" when she saw him being led out of the building in handcuffs. The man was taken by police to Bellevue Hospital after the incident for an evaluation. There were no reported injuries.

 Officers congratulate each other after successfully apprehending a crazed gunman on East 22nd Street in New York City.
Cops shut down streets in the Flatiron District Wednesday after a "crazy" man waved a pistol at two window washers from his apartment, cops and witnesses said. Kenneth Clarfield, 69, pointed a gun at the workers through the window of his 11th-floor home on E. 22nd St. near Broadway just before 1 p.m., sources said. One of the two panicked workers, who were dangling from scaffolding at the time, called 911, sources said. Cops arrived moments later, but Clarfield refused to open his door - causing a flood of officers to blockade nearby streets. "They told us to shut the door and stay inside," said a worker at Polaris Finest Nail Spa on the same block. "Everybody was scared."
Clarfield, known as a hoarder who has lived alone in the home for about 30 years, surrendered about 3:35 p.m., sources said. He was taken to Bellevue Hospital. "He looked crazy," the worker said. Neighbor Daryl Glenn, 45, said Clarfield is usually spotted on the block. "He sits on the fire hydrant next to our building just resting, never doing anything," Glenn said. "It's a little odd. He'd just sit and stare into space."

Police secure the scene near the Flatiron Building amid reports of a gunman barricaded in an apartment Wednesday afternoon.

Wednesday 27 July 2011

UK Cleaning Trends

More than a third of people pay for a window cleaner on a regular basis, while a similar number clean their own windows, and a quarter of householders admit their windows hardly get cleaned.
4 million Britons go on a domestic blitz: Even Kim Woodburn and Aggie MacKenzie, the stars of television's How Clean is your House? would be impressed by how much Britain's most domestically challenged households are cleaning up their acts. A new survey by market analysts at Mintel has revealed that four million house-proud Britons spend five hours or more each day cleaning their homes and doing other household chores. Just one in six people spend less than an hour each day on domestic duties, according to the survey of 1,500 households.

The survey reveals that mounting domestic duties such as cleaning, washing and ironing mean that nearly one in ten - eight per cent - of people spend a large part of their day on household chores. Only four per cent spend no time at all keeping the house or garden tidy, while just one in 20 people said they used paid help, such as a cleaner, once or twice a week or even more often.

More than a third of people pay for a window cleaner on a regular basis, while a similar number clean their own windows, and a quarter of householders admit their windows hardly get cleaned. The survey also reveals that the most hated jobs around the home are cleaning the oven, washing windows and getting rid of stains on carpets and upholstery. A spokeswoman for Mintel said: "During the current, more challenging economic environment, paying for windows to be cleaned professionally is one expense that people might have been expected to have cut back on in order to save money. "Nevertheless, more than a third of people still say their windows are cleaned regularly by a window cleaner.

"Over three quarters of adults really care about the house being clean and six in ten derive satisfaction from their housework. Retired people are most concerned about the cleanliness of their homes. "Some 33 million adults claim to spend a lot or a fair amount of time cleaning and tidying their homes. "Only 1.6 million adults do not get involved in cleaning at all, and even fewer claim not to tidy up. "Women are more likely to spend two hours or more on an average weekday on household chores, and men an hour or less. "Spending a lot of time on household chores also shows a bias towards over-45s."

Isobel Robertson, the national chairwoman of the Scottish Women's Rural Institutes, admitted she was surprised at the results of the survey. She said: "I would have thought that spending five hours a day on domestic chores would have been quite normal many years ago when there were fewer women in full-time employment and their job was to look after the home. "But with both men and women leading such busy lives these days and with all the modern gadgets available I do find it surprising that so many people can devote that amount of time to housework every day.

"A lot of our members would happily admit that sometimes housework has to go on the back burner simply because they have so many more interesting things to do. "However, I can also see that people really enjoy cleaning and do it because it gives them a sense of satisfaction and fulfilment. "I think it's important that if people are devoting that amount of time to housework, they are doing it because they enjoy doing it and not because they feel pressurised into having a perfectly pristine home." She added: "There is nothing wrong just keeping on top of chores in the kitchen and bathroom every day and giving the rest of the house a blitz once a week. "Household chores are still important to people even in these modern times."

Tuesday 26 July 2011

Window Cleaning Add-Ons, Dreams & Rock 'n Roll

Window Washing at Sky Level: Windows on the new Las Vegas City Hall reflect partly cloudy skies Monday. The building, under construction on Main Street downtown, is expected to be finished early next year. 

Erin Carr-Jordan, of Arizona, says she has visited and videotaped more than 50 such playlands as well as sending swabs for microbial testing. She says she’s found alarming conditions in rich and poor areas alike.
Arizona mom inspects, records appalling conditions: On a humid Monday morning, Erin Carr-Jordan was crawling through the tubey slides of a McDonald's PlayPlace on the West Side. When she got to the top of the colorful structure, she peered through a cloudy plastic window and mouthed the words: "This is bad. This is really bad." In recent months the 36-year-old mom and developmental psychologist from Arizona said she has visited and videotaped more than 50 such playlands as well as sending swabs for microbial testing. "Without a doubt, this was one of the worst and definitely in the top five," she said after climbing out of the tubes. "There was food everywhere."
A reporter crawled through a few minutes later to find sticky surfaces, filmy windows, several broken pieces of equipment, food morsels in every compartment, trapped hair, garbage and thick black schmutz in most crevices. Carr-Jordan, who is combining her playland testing with a family road-trip vacation, says she has seen similar conditions in many restaurants across the country. She's found that some fast-food companies regularly clean their playlands and are happy to provide customers with their cleaning protocols — she singles out Chick-fil-A — but that representatives of Burger King, Chuck E. Cheese's and McDonald's have either indicated they don't have any such protocols or have not responded.
Her activism began last spring after she followed her toddler through an Arizona McDonald's playground and was shocked by the filth. Several calls to the manager yielded no action, she said, so Carr-Jordan posted a video tour of the food- and graffiti-tainted structure on YouTube.

"It was unacceptable, completely unacceptable," said McDonald's spokeswoman Danya Proud, who said the video caught the attention of the restaurants' corporate offices in Oak Brook. "But it is not reflective of our business and our restaurants. As far as I'm concerned, it was an isolated matter. And we took immediate corrective action to thoroughly sanitize the PlayPlace." McDonald's says it requires the facilities to be thoroughly cleaned each day and the area kept free of debris and soiled surfaces. Burger King said its standards require "daily, weekly and monthly cleaning of playground equipment, pads and foams," as well as professional cleaning on quarterly basis.
Chick-fil-A corporate spokesman Don Perry said there are regular cleaning schedules for the establishments that offer play areas. And Chuck E. Cheese's said it has eliminated ball pits, requires that "all existing play equipment is cleaned with sanitizer" and removes graffiti. Both of these companies noted that hand sanitizer is available at the playlands. When the Tribune asked the companies whether they disinfect the areas with steam cleaning or other methods, none responded.
Carr-Jordan is videotaping and swabbing playlands in between visits to museums and friends as she travels cross country this summer with her husband and four children. Plans for her stay in Chicago included stops at the Field Museum, Navy Pier and at least three randomly chosen fast-food play areas. She said she's found alarming conditions in rich and poor areas alike.
Joan Rose, a co-director of the Center for Advancing Microbial Risk Assessment at Michigan State University, said she is not familiar with Carr-Jordan's findings but stresses that places that serve children need disinfection policies. "Kids often are exposed more (they put their hands in the mouth more often) and are also more vulnerable to more severe illness," Rose wrote in an email. "It is extremely important that the industry (like McDonald's), facilities themselves and states have good public health policies around cleaning and disinfection. These can be evaluated and monitored so we know we are achieving a safe environment for our kids."
University of Arizona professor Chuck Gerba, who is one of the nation's foremost authorities on germ transmission notes that children are major virus passers. "And viruses which cause diarrhea can survive up to a month on surfaces" such as playgrounds, he wrote in an email to the Tribune. "Bacteria like MRSA could also be transmitted by this route." Carr-Jordan has been sending her swab samples to a lab that she said found staphylococcus and other bacteria. Annissa Furr, a microbiology professor in Arizona, is working with her to collect and analyze the data to spur legislators to act on the issue.
"One of the ultimate goals is to put regulations in place that would require cleaning these places once a week or month or whatever comes back as necessary," Furr said. Public health departments currently inspect restaurants with food safety, not playground safety, in mind. Jose Munoz of the Chicago Department of Public Health said a city restaurant inspector could not cite a restaurant for a dirty playland. "But our inspectors do monitor for insect and rodent activity throughout the facility," Munoz said. "And if it happens to be in that area, the establishment would be cited."

New business steam-cleans Seattle trash cans — A new business called Steam & Clean has been launched to clean trash cans, driveways and tanks in an environmentally friendly manner. All water for cleaning is recaptured so there's no runoff into Puget Sound. Emily Wiewiorka, the company founder and president, said the business is going well and expanding as she finds new uses for her system. One company recently told her they had estimated it would cost them $200,000 to clean some oil tanks but she said Steam & Clean can do the job for much less, at $360 per hour. The business uses vehicles that look like garbage trucks. Rather than holding garbage, they hold 1,500 gallons of water, vacuums and filters. Trash containers are lifted into the truck and steam cleaned at 250 degrees Fahrenheit without chemicals or detergents. Wiewiorka said germs and bacteria are destroyed by the high temperature and the surfaces are left sterile. Wastewater from the process is filtered and cleaned in the truck, and then reused. Developing the first truck cost $300,000, and now Wiewiorka has ordered four more. She is committed to using local manufacurers and chose to have Kenworth and Heiser build the trucks.
Jim Hill, a technical consultant for the company, said using a local manufacturer is good for the economy but there's a downside: replacement parts that would be readily available from an Asian supplier must be individually made here and that adds time. Developing the first truck cost $300,000, and now Wiewiorka has ordered four more. The trucks can also handle small oil spills, window washing, flood waters, and cleaning tanks, barrels, driveways and walkways. Wiewiorka said brake dust, spilled oil and other pollutants can be sucked up by vacuums and cleaned inside the truck. Cleaning a trash can costs $3 per week per can. Windows cost $60 a month for a one-year contract, regardless of the size of the house. Steam & Clean charges by time. Wiewiorka, who lives in Redmond, got the idea for this business about a year ago when she was pregnant with her fourth child and sensitive to smells. In the U.K., where she is from, there are cleaning services for trash cans, but she couldn't find one here and saw a business opportunity.
She is a former corporate attorney who worked for 18 years in the private sector. She has lived in Europe, the Middle East and the U.S. While living in Dubai, she helped one client with a global expansion. Money to form Steam & Clean came from her own sources and private investors. The time to create it came early in the morning, late at night and when her children were napping. "I'm the kind of person who just doesn't sit back," she said. "I like doing stuff. I saw the business opportunity there and I went for it."
Steam & Clean today has 100 customers, split equally between businesses and residential. It is doing a test for one city in this area to clean waste receptacles from cafes, bars, pubs and other businesses. Hill said restaurants and food businesses in this state are supposed to keep trash receptacles clean and hygienic, and face a $10,000 fine for washing them in the street. Spokane, he said, charges businesses $20 to swap out an old, dirty can with a clean one. Steam & Clean charges $3 to clean a can. Wiewiorka is pleased with the progress Steam & Clean has made. She's also happy to be in the U.S., particularly in the Seattle area. She said it has been quite easy to start a business here, compared to the Middle East where red tape and bribes are common. People here, she said, are receptive to new ideas. "You Americans might be a bit jaded but as someone coming into this country, people are very happy, very positive and very helpful," she said.
However, she said financing this type of business is tough. She said a person that's never done this kind of work before without private equity would likely not be able to get a business like hers off the ground. Wiewiorka has made a commitment to hire as many veterans as possible, but said it is hard to find qualified applicants. Even in a recession, this is a relatively affluent area so recruiting is tough, she said. She is hiring truck drivers, truck assistants, office workers and canvassers. Wiewiorka said she has become passionate about trash and cleanliness, but she sees a lot of opportunity here. "Because it's such an unusual service, it's the first of its kind of service, who knows where it will take us." previous blog on this service here.

Dreams Made Possible: The eagerly anticipated annual Martha's Vineyard Community Services benefit, the Possible Dreams Auction, takes place August 1. What will you bid on? Kayak While They Work - While the crew from Vista Window Cleaning and Painting Services washes your windows, screens and sills, owner Richard Cowen will whisk you and a friend away for a Kayaking Adventure on Squibnocket Pond. Have the ride of your life and maybe hook a striper. Return home to your sparkling windows.

John Lynch, a window cleaner of Hauppauge hits the Mulcahy's stage at the fundraiser for him two months after being inflicted with pancreatic cancer. 
Fundraiser at Mulcahy's Held for Levittown Native Inflicted With Pancreatic Cancer: Two months ago, Levittown native John Lynch was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. Upon hearing the news, his longtime friend Tom Scandaliato began to put together a fundraiser to help pay the medical bills of the business owner, husband and father. With the help of Scandaliato and Lynch’s sister Catherine Lynch-Golub, the fundraiser came to fruition this past Saturday at Mulcahy’s Pub & Concert Hall in Wantagh. “There are all sorts of bills he’ll have to pay like deductibles, fees, time off from work and whatever the insurance company doesn’t cover,” said Lynch-Golub. “I was so happy to hear that Tom was putting this together. It was all his idea and I was ready to help out as soon as I heard about it.”

Lynch, a Hauppauge resident, is the owner of Sparkle Window Cleaning, which services areas throughout Long Island. He is married to Meaghan Lynch and has a four year old son named Casey.
During the Saturday’s fundraiser, Lynch played the bass with bands that performed on the Mulcahy’s stage. At the end of the night he reunited with his band mates from Levittown Memorial High School and played for the first time since they graduated. Saturday’s Mulcahy’s fundraiser attracted hundreds of supporters of Lynch’s cause. The event took up the entire concert hall and the music never stopped playing. There was catered food for the guests and the bar was hopping.

Each person who came was able to participate in a raffle for various items such as a television set, Yankees tickets, Mets tickets and gift certificates. The largest raffle cost $20 while the smallest cost $2. Local businesses donated items to the raffles while family and friends provided the rest. There was also a silent auction of various sports memorabilia, ranging from jerseys to autographed photos to free dance lessons. “Tom just made calls to everyone he could and everyone was ready to come and help out,” said Lynch-Golub. John’s mother, Joan Lynch, only found out about the event two weeks before. “It was a nice surprise,” she said. “Everyone likes John; he gets along with people very well so a lot of people came here for him. Two people even flew in from California. It’s like a big reunion of family and friends.” Anyone looking to contribute to Lynch's cause can send donations to: John Lynch P.O. Box 976 Coram NY 11727.

Monday 25 July 2011

Woman Falls To Death Cleaning Her Windows

Woman falls to death from 8th-floor flat: Mumbai, India: A 52-year-old woman fell to her death from the eighth floor of the building she lived in on Sunday afternoon. Surekha Ravi Pradhan was reportedly cleaning the windowpanes of her Chembur house when she slipped. Police said the incident occurred around 3 pm. Pradhan was alone at home at the time of incident. "She was standing on the parapet and cleaning the windowpanes when she fell," said a police officer. The building's watchman heard a loud thud and found Pradhan lying in a pool of blood. She was taken to a hospital where doctors declared her dead on arrival. She stayed with her businessman husband, Ravi. The couple has a daughter, who is married and settled in Sweden. Ravi had gone to a relative's place to attend a function, said the police.

Woman dies after falling from sixth-floor flat at chembur: A 52-year-old woman died after falling from her sixth floor flat in Raheja Acropolis at Chembur while cleaning window panes. The victim, Surekha Pradhan, lived with her husband Ravi in the apartment. “Ravi was out for a function. As it was Sunday, Surekha decided to clean the window panes in the afternoon,” said a police officer. Police said the woman was standing on the parapet, cleaning window panes when the ladder slipped and she fell down. “Around 3 pm, the watchman heard a crash after which he rushed to the spot and found Pradhan lying in a pool of blood,” said an officer from Trombay Police Station.

Sunday 24 July 2011

Free Window Cleaning Production Water from Air Conditioning

Free Window Cleaning Production Water from Air Conditioning: An alternative to collecting rainwater - For those lucky enough to live in a hot climate (or not so lucky, however you may see it) air conditioners automatically act as dehumidifiers when they chill the air and thus need to handle the reject accumulated water. Newer window units direct the condensed water to increase cooling of the condensing coils (warm side) which evaporates the water into the outdoor air, while older units (the ones that are easy to collect the beneficial reject water for wfp) simply allow the water to drip outside. Air conditioning units need to be connected to a drain & this is where the reject water is passed to. After recording a number of total dissolved solids tests - I'm happy to report that the reject water is well within the bounds for using directly on to windows. In normal testing I've found results to be between .010 to as low as .003. A simple sponge filter can be set up to get rid of non-mineral particulates on the outlet. Make sure the filter medium doesn't cause the water to back up to the air conditioning unit! By collecting your reject condensate water in 25L drums the water can be utilised via pumps in your water fed pole system.

How does it work? An air conditioner is very similar to a dehumidifier. Air in a dehumidifier passes over a series of cooling coils (the evaporator) and then over a set of heating coils (the condenser). It then goes back into the room as drier air with its temperature elevated. However in an air conditioner, air passes over the cooling coils (the evaporator) and then directly into the room. The heated refrigerant then goes through a tube outside the volume being cooled where the heating coils (the condenser) are located, and outside air passes over it and then stays outside. The water which condenses on the evaporator in a dehumidifier is caught in the drain pan or drain hose. The water that condenses on the evaporator in an air conditioner runs thorough a duct to the outside of the window as reject water.

How to Save Water From an Air Conditioner (U.S): Condensation from the cooling process is a by-product of air conditioning. Over time, several gallons of water can drip into the ground or a drain. Collecting the condensation from an air conditioning system in the home is a good source of many gallons of water for us.

1. Prepare a location for the rain water collection barrel. Locate the drain for the condensation and smooth the area below the drain with a shovel.
2. Place a 3- to 4-inch-deep layer of gravel on the ground where the barrel will be positioned.
3. Set the rain water collection barrel in position below the drain.
4. Measure the distance between the rain barrel and the end of the PVC condensation drain, using a tape measure. Cut a length of PVC of the same diameter with a fine-tooth saw.
5. Attach a PVC coupling to the end of the condensation drain. Install the extension length of PVC that was cut into the opposite end of the coupling.
6. Place another coupling on the end of the extension length of PVC tubing. Attach a PVC drain trap to the opposite end of the coupling.
7. Place another coupling on the end of the drain elbow and attach a PVC elbow to the coupling.
8. Position the elbow so that water will flow into the water collection opening in the top of the rain barrel.

Saturday 23 July 2011

Window Cleaning News

Practice of treacherous high-angle rope rescue prepares Portland firefighters for real thing: Firefighters from Portland’s Station 1 convened at Keller Fountain Thursday to train for high-angle rope rescues, a specialty of the southwest Portland team. “We want to get new people exposed to the training,” said Rich Tyler, of Portland fire. “High-angle rope rescue is our specialty.” Tyler and 11 of his colleagues cordoned off much of the park for the two-hour training, which prepares firefighters for high-angle rope rescues. Garrett Diehl glided back-and-forth on the rope, which was attached to two opposing trees on the north and south sides of Ira Keller Park, simulating what a real-life rescue may be like. “If there was a window-washer stuck high atop Wells Fargo, we’d be the station to go,” Tyler said.
The quote brings to mind last week’s rescue of a window-washer dangling near the top of the Seattle Center civic complex. The man, who was eventually saved by Seattle firefighters, was stranded 65 feet off the ground at McCaw Hall, a concert venue. A KIRO-TV helicopter captured the spellbinding video as the man was brought to safety. Tyler said the trainings—two were on the agenda for Thursday—are difficult to schedule because the entire staff is involved. “If a rescue happened downtown right now, we’d be on it,” he said.
One of the more recent attempts at a high-angle rescue led firefighters to the discovery of a climber who fell 50 feet to his death at Rocky Butte in Northeast Portland. Police confirmed the man’s death even as firefighters were performing a high-angle rope rescue to retrieve the man’s body. A recent response shows the range of the station's ability to repel down as well as up.
The crew from Station 1 was called to rescue a man at the bottom of a ravine off Southwest Barbur and 35th near Jackson Middle School, said Kurt Sommer, a Station 1 firefighter. About noon on July 4, Portland firefighters responded to the area and reached a man who was 35 feet down an embankment in a ravine. Sommer said the man was in an "altered state," by himself and naked in the ravine. Initial responders deemed the rescue too difficult and called on Station 1 for backup. "We bring all the goodies," Sommer said. While other stations are equipped for 'low-angle,' rescue, Station 1 is the only group performing high-angle techniques. Sommer said firefighters, the engine and anchor arrived to the area and hoisted the man to safety.

Window cleaner's ladder stolen: Popular Ashbourne window cleaner, David Hollingworth, has had his ladders stolen. The aluminium double extending ladders were propped up at the side of Bargain Booze on Monday July 11. While Mr Hollingworth washed windows just 100 yards away, two young men are thought to have travelled down Coxon's Yard before taking the ladders away via Dig Street. The ladders were stolen having been left unattended for just 10 minutes between 7.40pm and 7.50pm. Anyone with any information to contact PCSO Blackwell on 0345 123 33 33 or call Crimestoppers annonymously on 0800 555 111.

Working man tends to stuck kitten in Concord for almost 3 hours before managing to set it free: Staten Island, N.Y. - A tiny gray and black tiger cat went fishing through a hole in a utility box cover yesterday morning. The only thing it caught was its paw. At 8:30 a.m., Oscar Avarenga was walking to work when he spotted the stray kitten trapped near PS 57 in Concord. The feline's front right paw was stuck in a hydrant gate box, an eight-by-eight-inch square cover on the side of the street at the corner of Hanover Avenue and Palma Drive.
Avarenga, a window washer from Honduras who lives in South Beach, alerted authorities and kept the cat company, wrapping it in a wet shirt and giving it water to keep cool as temperatures approached 90 degrees. "I was afraid it was going to die," Avarenga said in Spanish. "I knew it was scared. It kept saying 'meow, meow' and I didn't know what to do."
Nearly three hours later, at 11:10 a.m. -- after several attempts to remove the cover -- Avarenga managed to lift it out of the ground with his finger. As he pulled it up, the cat flailed its body and removed its paw from the hole, freeing itself. It immediately scurried away into the woods and vanished. Judging from its dash into the trees, the cat did not appear to be injured. It was a bittersweet moment for Avarenga, who was hoping to adopt the cat and take it home with him. He is a cat-lover who owns Isi -- a tiger cat, as it happens -- and wanted to bring home a playmate for her.

Window cleaner set for walk to aid Kidney Research UK: A Shepshed window cleaner is taking on an 18-mile walking challenge to raise money for a kidney charity which helped him get his life back. Dave Baxter, aged 47, of Charnwood Road, had a kidney transplant thanks to a donation from his wife Sharon five years ago after suffering from nine years of problems. He is now taking part in Renal to Renal, walking from Loughborough Hospital Renal Unit to Leicester General Renal Unit with his family and friends, to raise awareness about kidney health, organ donation and raise money for Kidney Research UK. He told the Echo: “The transplant meant everything to me, it’s got me back doing the things I used to do. “I’ve done loads of things to raise money since my transplant but this one is a big one. It’s a good way of fund-raising for a great cause.”

Alaskan company loses BAMC contract: An Alaskan company that handles cleaning and other services at Brooke Army Medical Center and at health care facilities at Camp Bullis apparently has lost the lucrative contract. That prompted Ahtna Facility Services Inc. of Anchorage to notify the state last week that it may have to permanently lay off 434 workers, primarily housekeepers and floor-care technicians, on Aug 31. But those workers, represented by the Laborers' International Union of North America, are not in jeopardy of losing their jobs. Under the terms of a collective-bargaining agreement, the company that wins the contract simply will take over as the workers' new employer. “There will be no mass layoffs,” BAMC spokesman Dewey Mitchell said. The new contract has yet to be awarded, he added.
Ahtna officials didn't respond to requests for comment. Ahtna has had the contract for at least five years. A posting on the Federal Business Opportunities website dated May 2010 said the “estimated value of the 12-month period of performance (for the contract) is $32,407,972.” Ahtna has provided various services, including housekeeping, collection and distribution of linens, solid-waste and recycled material collection and window cleaning. The Army in December solicited proposals for a new five-year contract. However, the Army later excluded Ahtna after finding numerous shortcomings with the company's proposal. Ahtna filed a protest with the Government Accountability Office, but the protest was denied June 30.
Ahtna on July 11 asked the GAO to reconsider, but the status of that request is unclear. The same day, it sent notice to the state on the possible layoffs. Employers who anticipate mass layoffs are required under federal law to give 60 days advance notice. Mary Davidson, business manager for the union's local chapter, said an expansion at BAMC could mean even more cleaning jobs — upping the workforce to 600 people. BAMC is adding about 760,000 square feet to the existing hospital. Mitchell had no information on how many new jobs the project might add. Ahtna is a subsidiary of Ahtna Inc. The Ahtna are one of the tribes of indigenous people in North America.

Plans to save at least £1.5bn from private finance initiative (PFI) projects and "fully recycle" the money back into frontline services by the contracting authority have announced by the Commercial Secretary to the Treasury Lord Sassoon. The three main areas of savings in operational PFI contracts were identified as effective management of contracts, including sharing savings on insurance, making efficient use of space, for example, from subletting or mothballing surplus building space, and making sure the public sector doesn't buy more than it needs when specifying facilities management such as window cleaning. Under PFI contracts, private companies are paid back for the construction costs of new public sector projects over a number of years. The long-term costs of PFI have attracted criticism from MPs of all parties, and ministers want to see more effective management of contracts. The Treasury said this would include reducing wasteful energy consumption, mothballing surplus building space, and reviewing soft service requirements, "so that the public sector does not buy more than it needs when specifying facilities management such as window cleaning and frequency of decoration."

Javier Morillo-Alicea serves as president of SEIU Local 26, which represents private-sector workers in the property service industry, including janitors, security officers and window cleaners. MINNEAPOLIS - Let us pledge to stop calling the funding mechanism for the state budget a "school shift." That sounds too innocuous, as does "accounting gimmick," which makes it sound as if these are fake numbers people are playing with that have no real consequences. When the state "shifts" payments that are promised to schools, it forces the school districts to borrow money to make up for the money it should have received. Who do they borrow from? Why, from the Big Banks that we bailed out with our tax dollars at little or no interest!
And do these Banks, out of respect for those taxpayer-funded bailouts, make these loans to school districts interest-free? Quit your dreaming. They charge interest rates that the schools will have to make payments on. And how will they do that? You guessed it -- through property tax levies, or, if voters reject those, they'll see reduced school services or ever-expanding class sizes. This is not an accounting gimmick – it is stealing from our children. And those charter schools conservatives love so much? The robbery is even greater, since they must borrow at higher rates. So, think about it - we taxpayers pay once to bail the banks out and then again through property tax increases to pay the very banks that are now loaning school districts money.

Ontario program encourages youth to become their own bosses: There were 261 Summer Company applicants this summer from the Ottawa area. Diana Martinez-Cachon, the business adviser for youth entrepreneurship at the Ottawa Centre for Regional Innovation, picked students based on business plans and estimated cash flow, including the ability to show at least a minimal profit. Popular perennial startup companies through the program include landscaping and driveway maintenance. "When it's a landscaping or window cleaning business, I need to see that they really have a sense of the business plan. ... And the big thing is how are you going to differentiate yourself from the other people doing the same thing?" said Martinez-Cachon. Some of the unique Summer Company startups include a private practice birth companion and a CPR-training enterprise.

Father writes poem after thieves target his baby’s grave: Mr Reddington, who works as a window cleaner, said: “I’m always writing poems. I know he has been gone a long time but people shouldn’t mess with people’s graves. I want people to be aware someone is stealing his lamp and wanted to put the poem in Nathan’s words.” To whom this poem may concern, I pray you are willing to read and to learn. Why would you steal from such a young boy? My little lamp and my only joy. My mummy and daddy gave it to me, for when darkness falls in hope I might see. It saddens my heart and faith in mankind, to take from my graveside something you find. I have little else yet still you deny, the only true thing that lights up my sky. So I implore you, thief of the camp, please keep your hands from my little lamp.

Growing up around criminals, Harry Archer witnessed horrific violence. He saw people slashed to death, watched his parents robbed and, at the age of just 16, felt the butt of a sawn-off shotgun in his mouth. The result was he emerged into adulthood hardened to pain. “I felt no fear,” he said. “And I mistook that for confidence.” The violence he saw was so horrific that Harry could not understand the fuss when he threw a few punches at his ex-girlfriend Faye, the mother of his two sons. But, thanks to completing a 24-month Integrated Domestic Abuse Programme (IDAP) with Staffordshire and West Midlands Probation Trust, the once explosive character is confident he can keep his temper under control – no matter the provocation. “It was such an in-depth course. It really made me look at my behavior,” he said. “Before I always felt I was at the end of a tug of war. Now I think, ‘If you want the rope that badly, then have it. “I was scared of hurting people’s feelings,” he said. “But inside I would seethe and then I would hurt them anyway through my anger. I used to be so tongue-tied. Now I’ve learnt to tell people how I really feel right from the start.” Harry, who was never jailed, says he’s now the happiest he’s ever been. He’s due to marry new girlfriend Michele next April and is hoping to start a window cleaning business. And he’s so impressed by the course he wants to tell everyone about it.

Women were kicked in the head during street fight: A mother and daughter were both kicked to the head during a violent incident in Chirk, a court heard. Football playing window cleaner Daniel Meredith, 25, and his partner, trainee accountant Katie Crouch, 20, both admitted affray but were spared custody yesterday. Mold Crown Court heard the victims were Meredith’s former partner Samantha Thomas, and her mother Sharon Thomas. Judge Niclas Parry said that in a public street at night, when members of the public were about, the defendants were involved in a serious incident of public disorder which involved two women being kicked to the head while on the floor.
Meredith, of Charles Street in Chirk, was given a 24-week prison sentence suspended for 12 months. He was ordered to carry out 150 hours unpaid work and remain indoors under a three month curfew between 8pm and 6am – apart from on Tuesdays and Thursdays when he plays football or trains for Chirk. Matthew Dunford, for Meredith, said he was a window cleaner who played football for Chirk. He had pleaded guilty and the injuries were relatively minor. It was clear he had acted out of character. Mr Dunford said it was very unlikely he would come before a court again.

Quinte melts: Is it hot enough for you? Temperatures, with the humidex index, rose as high as 46 Celsius Thursday, sending many running to pools and air conditioned buildings. But some couldn't escape it, even if they tried. Diamond Window Cleaners Terry Roshotte and Ryan Miller had towels on their heads, which they hold down with baseball caps to keep the sun off of their necks, backs and shoulders. "We don't wet the towels, they start to heat up and it just gets worse" said Roshotte, wiping sweat off his brow with the towel. Where ever you were Thursday, heat was something you couldn't avoid. The temperature should ease off a bit today, with The Weather Network calling for a high of 31 C with the humidex rating making it feel like 36 C. Saturday's forecast calls for 29 C, with the humidex making it feel like 35 C.

The service interruption was caused by a NSTAR crews in Everett performing maintenance on a transformer, said Michael Durand, a utility spokesman which left 36,000 across Somerville, Charlestown, and Cambridge powerless. In Davis Square, the bustle of motorists and pedestrians soon became a column of cars piled in all directions leading to the messy intersection, and a crush of office workers and others who sought refuge in a fully powered Starbucks that one barista said was strangely untouched by the outage. Other businesses were not so lucky. Back at Sally O'Brien's, Figueiredo had to wrestle with a tempermental alarm system that locked him - and about a half-dozen customers, scheduled food and liquor delivers, and a window washer - outside in the heat.

Could house building schemes benefit window cleaning firms? Window cleaning firms could be one group that benefits from government measures to boost the house building sector. Housing minister Grant Shapps revealed this week that he wants to see an end to regulations that have made it difficult for the UK to fully embrace the concept of self-building. Indeed, he remarked that the country is one of the worst performing nations in Europe for encouraging people to construct their own abodes. Mr Shapps has called for more land to be made available and for mortgage lenders to issue loans to house hunters who want to create their dream pad. If there is a significant improvement in uptake, window cleaners across the UK could see greater demand for their services.

Man sold 'cocaine' to police officer: A man sold an undercover policeman what he claimed was cocaine – but when the powder was tested it was found not to contain the drug, a court heard. Daniel Mosley, aged 20, instead handed the officer a mixture of chemicals used as cutting agents and caffeine, Plymouth magistrates were told. The court heard that Mosley was a 'prolific' dealer but he claimed through his solicitor that this was the first time he had sold drugs. The court heard the powder was tested and found to contain benzocaine, caffeine and lidocaine. Mrs Furniss said police found £1,040 in Mosley's home. She added the police viewed him as a 'prolific drug dealer'. Graham Kinchin, for Mosley, said he had no previous convictions. He said Mosley wanted to get involved in drug supply but had been naïve and had done his first deal with an undercover officer. Mr Kinchin said Mosley worked as a window cleaner and the money seized by the police had been earned legitimately.

Cheque u-turn joy for Spa group:  A controversial plan to abolish the use of cheques has been scrapped and hailed as a ‘victory for common sense’ by members of an influential town group. Members of the Droitwich Area Forum for Older People are celebrating after the Payments Council announced the u-turn which will see the payment method be retained for as long as it is needed. The council announced in 2009 that cheques would phased out by October 2018, as long as viable alternatives had been developed. Work started last year on an alternative paper-based system, but the organisation has now said it will retain the cheque as a method of payment. The forum’s Sheila Neary, said: “If the cheque book was withdrawn as a way of paying bills it would have been a disaster for older people, small locally based charities and many voluntary organisations. “Many of us use cheques to pay small bills and for services like the window cleaner, the plumber, trips out, Christmas gifts and charity donations.

When I’m cleaning windows....! Cleaning the windows at Warwick Castle isn’t something that can be done with a bottle of window cleaner and a stepladder. In order to get to the windows a specialist team last week had to abseil down the walls. It’s not for the fainthearted, as while they try and clean the windows of varying sizes, there is a 100 foot sheer drop to the River Avon. Marketing director Georgina Kelly said: “Maintaining and restoring the historic fabric of Warwick Castle is a priority for us and we invest £250,000 annually to ensure that our wonderful building is in the best condition. We’re used to having brave knights at the castle but I’m not sure any of our jousting heroes or Merlin himself could cope with this job.”

Cec Thompson, who died on July 19 aged 85, fought his way up from the streets and orphanages of West Yorkshire to become one of the first black men to play rugby league for Great Britain. A nasty knee injury in 1958 curtailed Thompson’s career at 32. After playing, he still earned a living from the game as manager of Barrow, but a gnawing desire for self-improvement eventually got the better of him and he left two years later. In an era decades before the over-inflated wages of sports stars and the cash injections of Sky Sports, Thompson had supplemented his earnings by working as a window cleaner, a grim living in the cold and often wet north of England. However, it was on his round that he found inspiration for the next stage of his life.
“I used to go to schools to clean their windows and I would see teachers at work and imagine how pleasant it would be if I could do their job,” he recalled. “Window cleaning is cold, harsh work. Playing rugby is a brutal occupation. Put the two together and you have my life.” Self-financed by his window cleaning business, Thompson went to night school in his mid-30s, taking a course for 14-year-olds who had failed their 11-plus. At 39 he won a place at Leeds University, graduating four years later with an honours degree in Economics and a teaching diploma. While there, with typical enthusiasm and aplomb, he co-founded the Student Rugby League along with Andrew Cudbertson and Jack Abernathy: another part of his legacy that flourishes today.
On leaving university he taught economics, first at Dinnington Comprehensive School and then at Chesterfield Grammar School, where he ended his career as head of economics and master in charge of rugby. Alongside this he had continued to run his business, developing it from a humble window cleaning round into a highly successful industrial cleaning company with 250 employees.
In 1994 he received an honorary degree from Leeds University for his services to the community and in 2003 he became a freeman of the Borough of Allerdale. He spent his later years writing, travelling and expanding his business. Cec Thompson was a businessman, International rugby league player and economics teacher, who described himself as “half Trinidadian and half Yorkshireman and proud of both”, and is survived by Anne, his wife of 47 years, and their son.

Window cleaner Graeme Dust in court over attempted murder charge: A man accused of trying to kill his wife in Enfield is due in court this morning. Window cleaner Graeme Dust, 45, has been charged with soliciting to murder and attempted murder of his wife Nina. He was arrested at their Holmwood Road home in April, and is due at the Old Bailey this morning to enter a plea.

Sometimes you can't give window cleaning away. $75 for $150 Worth of Cleaning Services: Gonsalves Cleaning & Restoration is here for all your cleaning needs. Gonsalves Cleaning is a cleaning and restoration company who specializes in the clean up and drying of water & flood damage, fires, smoke, and mold. Also specializes in carpet cleaning, upholstery & fine fabric cleaning, Oriental and European area rug cleaning, window cleaning, power washing, striping and waxing of floors, floor sanding and restoration, and tile and grout cleaning. Since 2005, Gonsalves Cleaning & Restoration, has supported the use of non toxic, biodegradable, and environmental friendly cleaning products. Restrictions: Limit 3 vouchers per person, unlimited as gifts. Only 1 voucher per visit. Cannot be combined with any other offer.

Dalton running for re-election: Councilman Keith Dalton is running for re-election to the Post 3, East Ward seat. Dalton will finish his first term on the Covington City Council this year. “As tough economic times as we’re having right now, I think it’s more important than ever for my conservative voice to be on the council,” he said. Dalton, 46, is a 1983 graduate of Newton High School. He served as a city police officer from 1987 to 1992 and was chief of police in Oxford until 1998. He currently owns a janitorial and lawn maintenance service, Covington Window Cleaners Inc. He also is active in local fund-raising efforts for the American Cancer Society’s annual Relay for Life event and is a member and fund-raiser with the local Elks Lodge. Dalton and his wife Kim have two daughters. Dalton so far is the only candidate to announce for Post 3, East Ward.

Houses of superheroes: Where does a superhero live? In a top secret location, location, location. Iron Man's retreat: Location Point Dume, Malibu, California.
Estate agent pitch - John Lautner modernism meets Zaha Hadid-style high-tech in this stunning cantilevered clifftop pad. Great ocean views.
Facilities - Tennis courts, helipad, wrestling ring, extensive underground parking for vintage cars, entertaining and shagging facilities.
What it says about the owner - Insecure narcissist who's yet to work out what he's overcompensating for.
Would also suit - Formula One driver, Roman Abramovich, Ernst Stavro Blofeld.
Drawbacks - Structurally vulnerable in high-impact combat situations. Large window-cleaning bills.
For a quick sale - Convert it into a boutique rehab facility.
Remember that luxury mansion that was used in the Iron Man film series? Well it turns out that it’s just been put up for sale for a whopping $25 million. The 11,000 square feet luxury mansion comes with 4 bedrooms, 6 bathrooms and private access to Black’s Beach.

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