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professional window cleaners liability waivers: 3 waivers you can use to safeguard your business assets from customer damage claims

operating your own window cleaning business is not only financially rewarding but, it also allows several months free time off the job every year; time you can use to do as you please. this is because most window cleaning businesses are seasonal, only operating during the cleaning season.

therefore, it's important to take steps to ensure your finances and freedoms are safeguarded by the use of documents that will release your business from liability if damages occur on customer's window glass.

during the course of this article, i'll show you 3 liability waivers you can use to protect your business from financial damages caused by customers and construction companies suing you.

these are the 3 types of cleaning jobs that pose the highest risk to window cleaning companies:

  • post construction window cleaning
  • glass restoration
  • awning cleaning


1) tempered glass scratch liability waiver:

post construction window cleaning is, in my estimation, the most likely place you or your employees will cause damage to glass.

hidden glass fines caused by fabricating debris, in poorly manufactured tempered glass, will cause you to scratch glass when using razor blades and scrapers to clean glass. although the use of razor blades and glass scraper are the best, and most commonly used method to remove items like stickers, glue, decals and paint during a post construction window cleaning, it also may expose your business to a lawsuit, if damage to glass occurs when you are cleaning it.

glass fines can be extremely difficult to detect, especially during a construction cleanup. this is because the layers of construction debris coating the glass can make seeing glass fines difficult.

even if you test a small area of glass with a razor blade to try to detect the presence of glass fines, the layers of paint, caulking, stickers, glue and other construction materials may mask your ability to hear the "gritty" sound a razor makes when scraping over fines.

remember, glass fines are caused by fabricating debris during the tempering process of flat glass. the "roller" side of the glass can pick up tiny shards of glass from the rollers and bake it right into the glass.

but, because not all tempered glass released for public use is free of fabricating flaws, an unsuspecting window cleaner, at some point in the windows life, may scratch it using standard razor blading techniques. if this happens to you, you may be blamed for the glass damage and may be held responsible for the cost of replacing the glass.

this is where the use of a "post construction window cleaning liability waiver" is essential in protecting you from costly glass replacement. this liability waiver needs to be signed by the general contractor before you start the window cleaning process. the waiver must be written in such a way to release you and your employees from liability and legal action caused from the use of razor blades and glass scrapers.

here is a sample "tempered glass scratch waiver" posted at the iwca website i know you'll find useful:

http://www.iwca.org/content.asp?contentid=40

this is a sample tempered glass scratch waiver you can use but, i'd suggest having your legal council look it over to make sure it fits the needs of your business.


2) glass restoration liability waiver:

the use of glass restoration chemicals can be extremely effective in removing hard water stains, oxidization and other atmospheric pollutants from window glass surfaces. it's important for you to let your customer know that not all glass can be restored to its original, crystal clear shine.

window glass left exposed and unmaintained for long periods of time will develop stains on the surface of the glass. and, if left long enough, may even change the molecular structure of the glass.

surface stains usually fall into the "phase 1 corrosion" category which can, in most cases, be removed by following the restoration chemical's manufacture recommendations of use.

on the other hand, if you find the glass falls into the "phase 2 corrosion" category, the glass's molecular structure has been altered and regular chemical use will not remove the problem stain. in this case the glass will need to be replaced or you can remove the stain with the use of a professional grade window glass grinder.

glass grinders will actually remove a layer of glass and may cause a visual distortion in the glass. so, it's important to become as proficient in the use of glass grinders as possible to produce the best results for your customers.

in most cases you'll be restoring glass with phase 1 corrosion. in most cases, restoration chemical work wonders, but on rare occasions they can actually make the glass look worse. this is due to the way the chemical reacts to a particular piece of glass.

so, you'll need to let your customer know...

  1. there is a possibility the staining won't be completely removed from problem glass.
  2. there is a possibility that the stain will "reappear" sometime in the future.
  3. there is a possibility that the chemical may have a negative reaction to the stained glass and glass replacement may be necessary.
  4. if you are using a glass grinder to remove deep scratches and phase 2 corrosion, there is a possibility the glass may have visible distortion after the procedure is complete.

to protect your business and to educate the customer about the benefits and potential side effects of restoring their glass, a glass restoration liability waiver is needed. this waiver needs to be signed before any restoration work begins.

here is a sample "glass restoration liability waiver" posted at the winsol website:

http://www.winsol.com/waiver.htm

by the way, winsol is the chemical manufacture of a popular glass restoration product called "crystal clear 550".


3) awning cleaning liability waiver:

when ever you are working to clean a fabric material that has been exposed to the elements, there's a chance that the fabrics state of deterioration and the application of chemicals to said fabrics, can cause an undesirable outcome such as... (cracking and discoloration). this can be the case with awning cleaning.

awnings are made from different fabric types and have different types of finishes. it's up to you, the professional awning cleaner, to understand these differences and apply the correct chemicals and cleaning methods to these different materials. even with a great knowledge of these differences, damage from the application of correct chemicals and techniques can happen. the reason...

...in many cases, it's difficult to determine the state of deterioration by look or feel.

in any case, an "awning cleaning / restoration liability waiver" is a prudent measure you'll want to present and have signed before any work is to commence on your customer's awnings. winsol has an "awning maintenance waiver" posted at this address as a sample of what your company might produce:

http://www.winsol.com/awnwaiver.htm

in conclusion:

owning and operation a window cleaning business can be rewarding financially and allow you plenty of free time to do as you please. therefore, safeguarding your business with the use of liability waivers will help give you peace of mind while...

...protecting your business assets from damage claims when performing higher risk cleaning procedures.

 

andy engstromabout the author: andy engstrom specializes in teaching real people how to start profitable window cleaning businesses that make $40,000 to $100,000 (or more) per year. to get instant access to all his most profitable window cleaning business strategies, tools, and resources,

visit: window cleaning business

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