The robots are coming… but they’re making slow progress.

All industries change– they evolve over time to adapt to new methods and standards, trends, knowledge and technology. So, it was always considered inevitable that the high-rise window cleaning world might also adapt to the technological advances of our era.

However, after a little research, we’re not sure that any big evolutionary leaps in window cleaning tech are coming our way anytime soon.

From the early days of robotic window cleaners in the heady days of 2013 – when the New York Times technology section did a piece on the Winbot 730, which still needed human assistance as the device didn’t carry any cleaning fluid onboard – to slightly more functional and intelligent devices of today, the media has been excited about the possibilities they offer.

However, these robotic window cleaning devices currently have serious limitations and they are still very much in their fledgling development phase. In order to work they often require:

  1. Square or rectangular windows. They often find it difficult to work with rounded edges and find cleaning windows with right-angled corners the easiest. However, as most windows are square or rectangular that’s really not too much of a limitation.
  2. Windowpanes of a minimum size. Robotic window cleaners rely on a calculated path around and across a window, so most will require the window itself to be a minimum of size. What that size is differs per model.
  3. Windowpanes of a minimum thickness. Robotic window cleaners rely on vacuum suction to keep them on the windows, so delicate windows might not be able to sustain the weight of the device or the vacuum suction it requires to stay on the window. Most modern homes will have windows of an acceptable thickness, but the older your property the more this needs to be considered.
  4. Remember the tether. Some robotic window cleaner manufacturers are investigating fully battery-operated devices, but for now most, if not all, are plug-ins. However, even if they were not, it would make sense to use a tether or a device which loses its suction, runs low on battery or dislodges for whatever reason could fall to its demise, causing damage along the way.
  5. From pane to pane. Robotic window cleaners currently cannot move from window pane to window pane, so you can’t set it going across your home or up a commercial building on its own (for starters the cable won’t reach that far).

That being said, robotic window cleaners have still come a long way. They have become smaller, more intelligent, more efficient and, of course, app controlled. They make a lovely gadget gift for the homeowner who has everything. However, for quality of clean across an entire building, for the moment at least, a highly qualified professional window cleaner is still the most affordable and efficient solution.

For all your window cleaning, gutter clearing or outside surfaces jet washing and sealing needs, call London Window Cleaners 020 3954 2900. 



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