FAQ

This section contains answers to some frequently asked questions. Use the links in the sidebar to the right to skip ahead to different sections.

Scratched Glass and Scratch Removal

A. Workers putting tools on windows, plasterers wiping plaster off glass, painters and texture crews dry scraping glass, untrained window cleaners removing construction debris from glass, and defective tempered glass can all result in scratched glass.

A. No. Metal scrapers and razor blades alone will not scratch glass. However, abrasive materials, such as sand or fabricating debris from the tempering process, trapped by a metal scraper or razor blade, can scratch glass.

A. Yes. Most single scratches can be removed from glass. It's very difficult to remove scratches over the entire surface of defective tempered glass. If attempted, glass distortion may result.

A. Yes, but we do not recommend that practice. Removing chips requires the removal of significant amounts of glass and often results in severe glass distortion.

A. A scratch you can catch your finger nail in can usually be removed. Scratches much deeper than this might result in glass distortion.

A. Yes. With the proper equipment, most acid graffiti can be easily removed from glass without any distortion.

Back to top

Construction Window Cleaning

A. This type of window cleaning requires the window cleaner to be specifically trained to remove several types of construction debris from the glass without scratching.

A. Metal scrapers and razor blades have been the standard for construction window cleaning and remain the proven method to safely remove construction debris from glass without scratching.

A. Products with phosphoric acid are commonly used. The acid disolves the cement in the debris and makes it much easier to remove. Beware of any side effects on surrounding stucco and IG seals.

A. High quality window brushs are used for their ability to spread adequate water without scratching the glass. They help prevent sand from getting trapped between the brush and the glass. Strip washers are also commonly used, but hold less water and carry a higher risk of trapping construction debris, which can scratch glass more easily.

A. Yes. Steel wool is sometimes used to remove construction debris from glass, but carries a higher risk of scratching glass. If construction debris gets trapped between the steel wool and glass, scratching could result. Also, if steel wool is to be used, use only new steel wool. If rust is present in old steel wool, scratched glass will result.

Back to top

Insulated Glass Units (IG Units)

A. An insulated glass unit, commonly refereed to as an IG unit, is two or more pieces of glass separated by a spacer to allow air or gas to be sealed between the panes.

A. The surface facing the exterior of the building is surface #1, the surfaces inside the IG glass unit are #2 and #3, and the surface facing the interior of the building is surface #4. (This is an example of a IG unit consisting of two pieces of glass.)

A. There is no standard or regulation specifying the location of the tempering stamp.

Back to top

Low-E Coatings

A. Low-E coatings were developed to limit the amount of UV rays in buildings, which aids in the reduction of energy consumption. There are two main types of Low-E coatings, hard and soft. Hard coatings are usually applied during the manufacturing process of glass and are very durable. Soft coatings are usually applied after glass manufacturing and are applied in a vacuum chamber, usually with the sputter coating process.

A. Soft coatings are located inside the insulated glass unit, on surface #2 in warm climates and surface #3 in cold climates. Hard coatings are usually applied on surface #1 or #2, depending on the application.

Back to top

Heat Treated Glass

A. There are two main types of heat treated glass, fully tempered and heat strengthened.

A. Usually just called tempered glass, fully tempered glass is a safety glass used in many applications where the possibility of human contact is high. This glass is 4-5 times stronger than non-tempered glass and breaks into very small pieces when fractured. According to Federal Specification ASTM C1048-85, fully tempered glass must have a surface compression of 10,000 psi or more, or a edge compression of 9,600 psi or more.

A. Heat strengthened glass is twice as strong as non-tempered glass and must have a surface compression of between 3,500 and 10,000 psi, or an edge compression of 5,500 and 9,700 psi. Fracture characheristics of heat strengthened glass vary widely from much like annealed glass to similar to fully tempered glass. For this reason, heat strengthened glass does not qualify as a safety glass.

A. Fully tempered glass and laminated glass are classified as safety glass.

A. Laminated glass consists of two or more panes of glass with a tough plastic interlayer made of polyvinyl butyral (PVB), bonded together under heat and pressure. Laminated glass is also used as an effective sound control product. Laminated glass is commonly used in airports, sound studios, schools and in houses near freeways to keep away unwanted noise from airplanes, heavy machinery and traffic.

A. The base requirements were established by the federal government in 1977 through the Consumer Product Safety Commision CPSC 16 CFR Part 1201.

A. Anywhere glass is more prone to human contact such as doors, windows close to the floor, stair landings and tub/shower enclosures. Check you local building code for details or more specific locations.

A. Tempered glass must first be cut to the finished size, since it cannot be cut or modified after it is tempered. Then the edges are belt seamed or sanded to remove any sharp edges. Next it is washed to remove all fabricating debris. Finally it is heated to almost 1200°F and then quick cooled, which produces the temper.

A. All tempered glass windows must have a permanent tempering stamp applied to each piece of glass to signify it is tempered. Click here to view an example of a tempering stamp.

A. Tempering stamps are located in the corner of each and every piece of tempered glass. Click here to view an example of a tempering stamp.

A. No. Tempered glass in not softer or harder than non-tempered glass.

A. No. Quality tempered glass surfaces are just as smooth as non-tempered glass.

A. Poor quality tempered glass commonly has fabricating debris fused to it's surface during the tempering process. This is usually a result of tempering contaminated glass.

A. No. But, it is highly advised that all glass be washed prior to tempering to remove all fabricating debris.

Back to top

Things To Ask Any Glass Restoration Company Before Signing a Contract

A. We have been performing glass restoration for more than 15 years. The Fields Company also offers glass consultations and expert witness services for the construction industry, insurance companies, builders, window cleaners and legal industries regarding damaged glass.

A. Special restoration discs are employer during the grinding and polishing process.

Abrasive disc are used for grinding to remove the scratch or acid damage and polishing compounds composed of cerium oxide is applied to special polishing disc to restore the glass surface to its original - ìlike newî appearance.

A. Restoration systems that use dry abrasive disc to remove glass damage will create glass dust, which can be very dangerous to operator and the surrounding area.

This glass dust created from the restoration process must be controlled during the entire restoration process. Most companies use dust masks or respirators to protect the technicians, but this system offers little to protect the surrounding restoration area.

The Fields Company uses a custom fitted dust shroud equipped with a HEPA vacuum to control all the glass dust during the entire restoration process. Our system protects the technician and the surrounding area where the restoration is being performed.

Make sure any company performing any glass restoration can guarantee a safe and controlled environment for the technician and the entire restoration area.

A. We offer our clients a ìsatisfaction guaranteeî warranty on every job we restore.

A. Most damage can be removed with distortion free results. When extreme damage needs to be removed, that might result in some surface distortion. The amount of distortion will depend on the type and amount of surface damage.

We will inform the client prior to any work being started, if there might be some noticeable distortion as a result of severe damage to the glass surface. The client can make an educated decision at that time, if they want to proceed with glass restoration or replace the glass.

A. Most glass restoration will result in ìlike newî results. Again, this will always depend upon the type and depth of damage being removed from the glass surface. Talk to your technician before any restoration is started. This way you will have an expectation of the results before signing any contract.

A. We offer ìfreeî glass restoration demonstrations on large jobs. This will guarantee the client will know what to expect from our services, how long it might take and if they will be satisfied with the results, before they commit to signing a glass restoration contract.

A. All types of glass can be restored. Annealed, tempered, heat-strengthen, mirrors and laminated. We restore these glass types in buildings, cars, buses, trains, planes and furniture.

A. Scratches can be taken out of all ìtemperedî glass. Tempered glass is much stronger and can withstand much more stress during the restoration than annealed or laminated.

A. Low-e coated glass comes in two major types. A hard coat and a soft coat.

Hard coat low-e coatings can be located on the exterior surface of the glass, which might be the surface the damage is located or opposite the coating. If the damage is located on the coated surface, you cannot remove the damage without removing the coating. We do not recommend removing the coating, since it would be very noticeable to client. If the coating on your glass is a ìsoftî low-e coating, itís usually located inside the insulated glass unit on a double pane window. This glass can be restored without concern for the coating.

There are many new coating coming onto the market these days and you should check with your glass supplier to see if there is any coating on the surface being restored. If there is, I would not suggest restoring the glass. Call if more information is needed.

A. Polishing glass rarely creates distortion if a reputable restoration company is performing the restoration. Caution should be observed when grinding out very deep scratches or chips. This requires much more glass to be removed from the glass substrate and could cause distortion. The amount of distortion depends on the technicians experience, the restoration system being used and the depth of the damage being removed.

A. To remove scratches or acid etching from glass, you must lower the surface of the glass to remove the damage. It would be the same for sanding out a scratch in a wooden coffee table. The trick it to remove no more glass substrate than necessary to remove the damage and blend out the area while performing the restoration to avoid any unnecessary distortion.

A. Generally, most scratch or acid damage can be removed. Itís more a matter of, does the glass have a coating on the damaged surface, how long it will take, how much the client is willing to spend, will it be cost effective and will the amount of distortion be unacceptable.

Example: If you have a small window with widespread damage that is very deep. It might be better to replace the glass. But, several things come into play. How hard will it be to remove the glass out of the frame, is there any signs on the glass and how much would it cost to replace.

If the glass has very deep chips, such as you would see around welding and iron grinding, that glass will almost always needs to be replaced, but that is the exception, not the rule.

A. We specialize of ìflatî glass, which is all architectural glass, furniture glass and vehicle glass (Cars - modern and antique, motor homes, buses, etc.) Curved glass is also restorable in most cases.

A. Most glass damage can be identified. The majority of glass damage falls into two major categories. Scratches or acid etching. The majority of scratching and acid etching is usually caused from vandals on store fronts.

In resent years there has been a major scratching problem on new houses and buildings, which is a result of poor quality heat-treated glass. You can read more about that on this web site.

Another minor scratching that can usually be removed very easy is ìmetalî scratches, such as a windshield wiper on a car that lost its rubber blade or a aluminum ladder coming into contact with glass.

The construction industry is a very common place to find scratching of glass. Protection is becoming more popular in resent years, but some builders still have to learn the hard way from their plasters, brick layers and welders.

A. Glass can be severely damaged from water. Water being over spray from lawn sprinklers or water run down from precast concrete buildings can cause hard water spots that are very difficult to remove.

Damage is also very common from inexperienced window cleaners trying to remove ìheadî water spots. Know the acids and chemicals you using before you cause more damage than you started with. Tin Etch Haze is one common result of using the wrong acid on float glass.

A. Graffiti damage is by far the worst of the worst. It takes the best equipment and most experienced technical to restore the glass without breaking the glass and minimizing the distortion. An inexperienced technician can break more glass than restore and cause unnecessary distortion, which will be very noticeable to client. Glass is a very unforgiving substrate to work with and a highly trained technical with the right equipment is well worth the extra money.

A. The client can have Anti-Graffiti film applied to the glass once its restored to its original condition. This is a small investment to protect your glass from future vandals. Most graffiti film will not be effected by paints or acid etching, but check with your restoration company to make sure.

A. Expect to pay anywhere from $50.00 to $100.00 per hour. Travel and difficulty in getting to the glass damage would also enter into the restoration price and how fast it could be completed.

A. You should always get an estimate and request a demonstration if itís going to be a big job. Just to make sure the company can perform the restoration to your expectations and at a reasonable price.

A. You should expect to save half the replacement cost and itís not unusual to save a lot more. It all depends on the severity of the damage, signage to be replaced, type of glass and time saved to resolve issue.

A. Restoring glass is all about lowering the surface to remove the damage. Depending on how severe the damage is, you will select the correct procedure to accomplish the goal. Light scratches can be polished out, deeper scratching would take slight grinding follow up with polishing.

Extensive damage will take a more aggressive approach, which comes with risks of glass breakage, surface distortion and unsatisfactory results. Again, glass is a very unforgiving substrate and will show any mistakes that are made during the restoration process. Some restoration mistakes can be corrected, but some, especially surface distortion are fatal mistakes and most cannot be fixed.

A. There are several different types of restoration systems on the market and they sell for all different prices. The key to glass restoration is knowledge of the substrate you are working with and selecting the proper equipment to get the job done. If your only removing a small light scratch, you wouldnít want to invest in a $3,500.00 restoration system. Hire it out and be done with it. But, if your planning on getting to the glass restoration business, go with the company thatís been around awhile and expect to pay more for the equipment and the technicians knowledge.

A. It used to be around 1î from the edge could be removed, but in recent developments, you can get as close as 1/8î in most cases. Your challenge would be in the corners, but rarely are there scratches in the corner. The client will have to decide if enough scratch damage can be removed or would they rather pay for a new window at a much higher price.

A. Tinted glass is no different to restore than clear glass. Tinted glass will show more dullness and take a little more time to restore, but yes, tinted glass can be restored.

A. No. Removing the scratch damage actually makes the glass pane stronger. The scratch in the glass makes the pane weaker in that area and is more susceptible to fracture if pressure is applied to the damaged area. The depth of the scratch would reflect the possibility of breakage. Glass cutters are used to score (scratch) glass before "snapping".

A. The client should be 100% satisfied with the restoration of their glass. Thatís not to say itís possible to restore every window like new. But, the client should be told up front and before any restoration is started, what can be expected. No surprises.

A. We do not charge for estimates within our immediate area, which is 50-75 miles from Livermore, California. Restoration estimates out side that area can still be given if the job is large enough to justify the travel cost. Projects out of town will be assessed a travel fee, but if the job is large enough and we are contracted to perform the restoration, the fee will be waived.

A. Our systems are self contained and keep all slurries and restoration debris within the equipment. We are the only glass restoration company I now that uses a self contained shroud on all our systems for restoring glass. Our systems not only keeps the restoration area, but also protects the technician and surrounding area from dangerous glass debris and slurries.

A. We maintain full general liability insurance, workmenís compensation insurance on all our technicians, which are ìemployeesî and have full coverage on all our company vehicles.

A. No. All our technicians are paid by the hour and are employees of The Fields Company, so they have no reason to hurry through a glass restoration project to save time.

A. No. There should not be any evidence that the window was damaged, if the glass restoration was performed by a qualified technician, performed correctly and with the proper equipment.

A. Glass restoration is always done on site and never removed, with the only exception being a table top or antique car window. If the glass needs to be removed in a building, it would probably be cheaper to just replace it, since the cost for a glazier to remove and reinstall the glass would effect the clients cost. There might be a very rare circumstance where the glass had to be removed, but Iíve never heard of removing glass in a building to restore it. Iíve had parts of the frame removed to access the edge of the glass, but never remove the glass.

A. It's my opinion that they both have their place and let me explain because we use both.

We have used the SRP Scratch Removal System for over 15 years and we have been a distributor for the manufacture for many of those years. Being a distributor, we sell their equipment, train clients that buy the system and offer parts and service.

With that being said, I believe the SRP Scratch Removal System is the best, fastest and most cost effective polishing system on the market today. It is more powerful and much cheaper to operate than other polishing methods.

We are also a supplier for the AGR ìAdvancedî Glass Restoration System, which is a dry glass restoration system we developed for excess glass damage that is common with graffiti damage. This type system has become popular in recent years, but I donít believe most sellers of this type system offer their clients the education or sufficient protection from the dangerous glass dust generated during the restoration process by this system. Our AGR system comes equipped with a shroud that retains the glass dust generated during the restoration and you avoid the danger of exposing the technician and the surrounding environment to that contamination.

Back to top

Tub & Shower Repair

A. We provide tub and shower repairs for builders, homeowners, tub manufactures, hotel & motel managers, landlords and general contractors.

A. We have worked on Lasco, Kohler, Jacuzzi, American Standard, Sterling, Whirlpool and several manufactures we have never heard of.

A. We cover the San Francisco Bay area in California. Our corporate office is located in Livermore, California and we frequently travel within 75 miles of our office.

A. We always calculate our costs on the time it will take to repair a tub or shower. Itís not always the size of the damage as much as itís the difficulty of the repair and the matching of the finish. Example: We can repair a VERY large hole in a stall shower a lot cheaper than attempt to fix a good size crack in a tub floor that will require structural foam, patching the crack, create a access hole, and color matching the finish coat.

A. We provide a proposal with every repair before we start the repair and explain any warranty issues that might be involved at that time.

A. Scratches can be removed from all types of tubs and showers. Most scratches are a very minor repair, but some very deep scratches will require additional work for filling and color matching the existing finish.

A. Any size chip can be repaired and painted to match the existing color of the tub or shower.

A. Holes can be repaired in tubs and showers, even if they are located in the floor or below the water line. This requires extra time and planning, but can be done to avoid replacing the tub or shower.

A. The original structure and finish is always best, but a properly performed repair should still last as long as the tub or shower itself. The painted finish that covers the repair and matches the surrounding might dull slightly over the years depending on use, abuse and cleaning procedures.

It's very important to follow the manufactures recommendations for cleaning and maintaining your tub and shower to extend the beauty and finish of your tub and shower appearance. Never use powdered cleanser on any tub or shower.

A. We offer a 1 year warranty, which is what you get with most new tubs and showers. If you see a lifetime warranty, check to see if thatís just to cover the shell, which means it will hold water for a lifetime if it hasn't been abused or it hasn't been damaged in a manner that would void their warranty. Proper care is the key to a long lasting on your tub and shower, which includes the original finish and any finish applied after the required repairs.

A. Cracks can be repaired in tubs and showers, but structural cracks will require additional support before any repair is attempted and can not always be warranted. You should check with the technician before you decide to attempt the repair. A structural repair is still an option when you consider the cost of replacement.

A. Any crack in a tub or shower can be VERY serious. This type of damage should be checked as soon as possible to make sure water is not draining under the fixture. This could cause water damage, dry rot and more seriously mold, which can be a very serious health hazard to the homeowner and family.

A. Any crack that is located in the floor of a tub or shower, around the drain or lower sides. This location will require additional support to limit flexing of the area when the fixture is being used. There isnít always a way to support the area around a drain in a raised foundation house. Again, you should check with the technician doing the repair before you decide to attempt the repair.

A. There are several way to support the floor in a tub or shower. The most popular method is with two part closed cell foam. This is installed by drilling a small hole near the damage and injecting the foam underneath the damaged area, which will add structural strength to the entire area and limits the flex of the area after the repair is complete.

A. Usually this type of repair is very successful, but will not be warranted at all times, as a result of the flexing of the area when being used. This flexing can effect the repair and client should check the repair area from time to time. Keep in mind, it still might be a good idea to attempt to make the repair, even if it might fail over time. It will cost a lot less to give the repair a chance, then spend several thousand dollars to pull out the tub or shower, marble walls and flooring to get the fixture removed. Trying to install a new tub or shower will also be a challenge. In the end, you must weight the chances of a successful repair to the cost of replacement.

A. We repair porcelain, fiberglass, cast iron and acrylic tubs and showers.

A. This is a very common repair and usually can be corrected with a structural foam being injected under the floor of the fixture. This can be accomplished by drilling a few small access holes or possibly entering the cavity from the side of the tub or shower. You might be able to access the tub or shower from a side room, possibly a closet, behind the baseboard.

A. Never use these types of mats. They can discolor and damage the finish on your tub and shower. These types of mats can blister the gel-coat on fiberglass tubs and showers, which will then require major restoration to remove the loose blistering and reapply a water proof finish. I would suggest something that is permenate, such as a Skid Resistant floor finish.

A. This is a service we provide and another very popular solution to a slippery floor. This can be done in about 1 hour and the tub or shower can be used the next day. Sometimes the color matching is a little lighter or darker, but the benefit of having a dependable Skid Resistant floor vastly out weighs the benefit of not having it installed.

A. We can make this type of repair, but it is critical that the tub or shower spout does not drip when the water is shut off. If the water continues to drip, this will effect the repair and void any warranty.

A. We do not offer this service at this time, but there are several companies the do. Feel free to contact us and weíll help you fine a reputable company you can trust to do a quality job at a reasonable price.

Back to top

Window Frame Restoration & Repair

A. Most damage caused to window frames can be repaired. If we can get to the damage, we can usually get it repaired for you.

To list just the most common damage we routinely repair, it would include holes (large and small), chips, cracks, burns (from cigarettes), hammer damage and the list goes on. All these damages can be easily repaired and will not require any removal or dismantling of the window.

A. If the damage extends into the frame, behind the wall, this damage should be inspected more closely to determine if water or moisture will enter the building and cause more extensive damage over the years if not repaired. We usually recommend removing as much wall material (sheetrock, siding or stucco) to make detailed inspection of the entire damage. Rarely is it required to remove the window, but ignoring any hidden damage is very risky and could be very costly in the future to rectify (dry rot, mold and structural damage).

A. Most window frame repairs are minor and cost less that $100.00 As the damage increases, the cost goes up. The cost for repairs are always related to the time it takes to complete the repair. Material cost for a repair are usually very minor and don't enter into the cost. Size, location and color matching of the damage has more to do with the cost than anything else. The only other item that would increase cost would be the travel time to the project.

A. My biggest concern would be the possible water damage and any moisture could cause additional damage is not repaired. This could be extensive if left go for months or years. The health risk of mold is another factor that should be consider.

Beyond that, I would remind the client most damage is minor to fix and doesnít require other trades to repair walls, paint, stucco, wood trim, etc...

A. No, we take all precautions to protect the surrounding area during the entire restoration and repair process. We also clean the entire area when the job is complete.

A. This is another service we provide and can also be done without removing the glass. Check out our Scratched Glass Section for more information.

A. We are the only company that offers a closed restoration system, which means our system contains all glass dust and contaminates. This is VERY important to avoid the dangers of lung disease to the technical and the contamination of clients home or business.

A. No, we are not equipped to remove, order and install new glass. I would recommend calling a licensed glazier. If you need suggestions, feel free to contact us.

A. No, we do not offer this service and for good reason. We do not believe this is a reasonable service or good investment for the client. Since the seals on your insulated glass window have failed the unit cannot fixed. You might be able to remove the moisture, but the insulated glass unit and its properties are no longer effective. Many times the glass surface has become corroded, which cannot be fixed.

We recommend calling your window supplier to check on the warranty (less that 10 years old) for a free replacement or call a certified glazier to replace the glass unit. Call me for more information on why Trying to restore an insulated glass unit is always a bad idea. My suggestion: Save your money.

A. We restore and repair a variety of materials. The most popular are vinyl, anodized and wood (painted and stained).

A. The time will always depend on the extent of the repair, but most all repairs only take about hour or so, but usually never over 2-3 hours.

A. Not necessarily. Some issues that you might assume is damage, might be a factory defect and might be covered my your warranty. We can also help you with that.

Some examples:

  • If the Insulated glass fogs up within 10 years, it should be covered under your warranty. Check with your supplier.

  • If the corners of the window frame crack at the miter, that should be covered under the warranty.

Difficult window vent sliding should be brought to the attention of your window supplier. It might be a defect, a minor adjustment or just standard maintenance.

Broken glass might even be covered by your warranty. Always check...

A. Most water spots can be removed, but using the wrong acids or chemicals can cause more damage than the water spots. Make sure you hire a company that specializes in frame restoration and don't forget to ask about possible sealing of the frame after they have been restored. Sealing glass is also available to prevent water spots from sticking to the glass surface in the future. We offer both services.

A. This is usually caused from stucco or concrete rundown. This can usually be easily removed with the right acid or chemical. Once restored, you can seal the window frames, stucco or concrete surface it came from to prevent it from reoccurring.

A. This usually happens on a older building that has been neglected for years. We can run a test sample to see what's possible, prior to submitting a proposal. This way the client will know exactly what to expect and we will know what it will take to satisfy our client.

At the very least, we will know what's possible and offer a few options to the client. If the frames are corroded and cannot be completely restored, we can offer a restoration, which might include sanding, patching and painting the frames to make them look much better.

Again, we inspect, test and advise. Then and only then, the client can make a educated decision on what they would like done. And, they are never under any obligation to have anything done if thatís their decision.

Back to top

HOT High Pressure Washing

A. The Fields Company has been providing pressure washing services for the residential building industry for over 30 years in the San Francisco bay area, CA. We specialized in pressure washing the garage and driveways of new homes.

A. We are a fully insured company, with all the required state and local licenses required to perform the services we offer. All our technicians are employees of The Fields Company and are paid by the hour, so they have no reason to hurry through any project. They only use company owned trucks, which are also fully insured and equipped with everything needed to get the job done right the first time, every time.

A. Absolutely. The client only needs to make a request and we will send them over at once.

A. You bet. I would suggest an onsite inspection to go over the options you might want to consider. But, first of all, the windows are always a great way to show off a house and yes, we do windows Then I would take a look at the house exterior, patios, decks and driveway for starters. This inspection service is complementary and will be well worth your consideration. And, there is never any obligation.

A. We accept all major credit cards for all the services we provided.

A. No. We do not accept or require any deposit.

A. Absolutely. We want our clients to be 100% satisfied before they pay. If for any reason you are not happy with the service, contact our office and we will do what it takes to resolve any issue. When your completely happy, itís time to pay, not before.

A. That would depend on several factors. We can make an onsite inspection of your property and give suggestions on what we believe should be done to maintain the property in a acceptable condition. Then the client can make the final decision on what they would like done now and what they might like done at another date. We can send the client periodic maintenance reminders if the client would like to include that service - at no charge.

A. The first three are all describing the same thing. A steam cleaner is different because it delivers the water hotter (steam) and looses a lot of its pressure as a result. This type of equipment is usually used where sanitizing or sterilization is required on such application as a commercial cooking hoods to remove built up grease.

A. First of all, PSI means Pounds Per Square Inch, which is the pressure of the water at the tip. The GPM means Gallons Per Minute, which is the amount of water that comes out of the tip, per minute. I believe both are very important. You need to consider the application your PRESSURE WASHER will be used for the most. If you have to choose one, I would go for the GPM. The GPM will help with the speed of your work and the amount of work that can get done in a shorter amount of time. A high pressure with a small amount of water can sometimes get the job done, but will take a lot longer. This is sometimes a personal decision, but I like my water volume to be as high as possible.

A. This is VERY true and should not be taken lightly. That is why you should make sure you only consider a experienced pressure washing company and make sure they are licensed and fully insured for this type of work in case damaged any is done.

A. Yes, that is always an option, but make sure you consider the down side. What type of pressure washer are you going to need (or rent)? Will you damage any surfaces you are trying to clean? Will you get the cleaning result you desired without the required knowledge thatís needed? Will you damage the pressure washer? How much money are you really going to save after you consider your time, rental cost, possible damage, end result and most importantly, the risk of injury to yourself. I would respectfully recommend you leave the big jobs to the pros. If you have a small job and want to give it a try, that is where I might consider doing it myself. Good luck...

A. When chemicals are used, we always use environmentally friendly and biodegradable soaps. No need to be concerned about your plants.

A. High pressure washing is designed to clean better and faster and not damage the substrate itís supposed to be cleaning, if being done by an experienced technician. A knowledgeable technician will access the surface they are cleaning and determine distance and pressure that is acceptable for the project.

Example: When pressure washing a wood deck or fence, you want to use much less pressure than when cleaning a concrete patio, stucco wall or brick planter. Always hire an experienced company that has been performing pressure washing for years and can give references.

A. Yes, but care must be taken to avoid too much pressure to avoid excess wood grain removal. Wood between the grains is much softer than the grain itself. An old deck will look much better when pressure washing is done, but the area between the grains will be lower than the grain when the cleaning is complete. A test area might be suggested, prior to the entire job being contracted to show client what they can expect before the job is awarded. A clients expectations are very important and test areas can be done prior to awarding a project. This can be done on a wait and see basis, until the test is complete.

A. Our goal is to wash soiled areas, but some loose & peeling paint will come off during the pressure washer cleaning. Again, a test area can be done to assure the results and show the client what can be expected.

A. Yes, we lightly wash down the windows (& screens) during the house washing. This cleans most of the debris from the windows (& screens), but will not leave the windows crystal clean. We do offer window cleaning as one of our related services, if desired, but itís not always included in the pressure washer bid. We ask the homeowner to please close and lock all window prior to any pressure washing around windows to prevent water from coming into the home.

A. Pressure washers, just like pressure washer companies, are all different. We believe our pressure washer equipment is the best on the market. When buying pressure washer equipment, always buy the equipment that will get the job done most efficiently. This means, buy pressure washer equipment that delivers a high volume of water which gets the job done faster. Buy a hot system if your going to be doing large areas and dealing with grease, oil or any other difficult material to remove with cold water. Gum is a very good example. High pressure water is not enough to remove gum and most companies will use more pressure (move cleaning tip closer) to try and over come the difficult issue, because they donít have hot water. This usually takes a lot more time and damages the surface being pressure washed, without removing all the gum. Get the right equipment (and company) for the job.

A. Yes, gutters can be pressure washed, but the client must understand the conditions before an agreement is signed. Old and damaged gutters will be more evident after the gutters are clean. Any deteriorated gutters might leak and come apart with the use of a high pressure washer. Itís very important the gutters are inspected prior to any pressure washer cleaning starts.

Note: Pressure washing gutters should only be done when the house is also going to be pressure washed. Pressure washing gutters will leave a mess on the walls and windows and will need to be cleaned off before the job is done.

A. The best time to pressure wash the gutters is in the fall, before the rains come. This way, you make sure gutters are clean for the rains that follow. Try and wait until the leaves have fallen, but before the rains if possible, to make sure the gutters and down spouts are working properly.

A. Yes. This is a very important issue and must be understood before hiring any pressure washing company. All water from any pressure washing operation must be controlled and diverted from going into any street storm drains. There are VERY high fines and penalties for violating storm drain regulations. This goes for the contractor performing the work and the home or building owner who hired the contractor. These fines can be in the thousands of dollars with the first violation infraction. Make sure any pressure washer company you hire is aware of all the run off water regulations and is equipment & willing to perform all the required water controls during all pressure washing operations.

A. This would depend on what kind of graffiti we are talking about. Paint graffiti can usually be pressure washed off, but might require some specialty soaps and chemicals. The area would be tested for compatibility and effectiveness of removing the graffiti.

Back to top

Bird Abatement and Control

A. Birds create three main issues: They effect your image as a store owner. They damage the structure & customers vehicles. They are a serious health risk to humans.

But, that's just the beginning. Your roof might be effected by clogged rain gutter drains, store inventory damage from bird droppings, fire danger if birds are nesting in exhaust flues and the maintenance cost to keep cleaning up the birds mess every day, week or month. Not to mention the dangers of clients slipping on bird droppings, which can result in a lawsuit.

A. Birds are creatures of habit. They perform the same routine every day with few exceptions. They feed at one location, roost at another and nest at the third location. They will congregate where there is food. They will roost and nest where they can be protected from the weather and any potential threats.

A. Yes, Without a doubt. Any bird abatement plan can be designed with a small amount of research that includes an onsite inspection. From there we will determine what it will take to resolve your bird issue. But, the first step is to always understand the extent of the bird problem and then how it can be resolved.

A. We focus our main attention on pigeons. The reason pigeons are the biggest part of our bird abatement program is they are usually the biggest issue with contaminating food, transmitting disease and carry parasites, which is why they are an unprotected species by Federal Law.

A. The challenges are almost endless, but there are solutions for every challenge. If you have a roof overhang with roosting pigeons, we might install a bird net to prevent the birds for entering area. Ledges and signs can be bird proofed with spikes, bird wire, bird coil or shock track. Roof top vents and chimneys can be bird proofed with Daddy-long-legs, rain gutters can be protected with special rain gutter spikes and the list goes on.

A. Owls sometimes have a minor effect on bird abatement, but is not effective when the birds have been roosting for any length of time or when there are a high number of birds. Any effective deterrent must effectively scare the birds away, make the birds think it the deterrent presents a danger or prevent the bird from access into an area, such as netting.

A. Sticky gel has been used in the bird abatement industry for years, but I believe it's effectiveness is very limited. If the bird issue is minor and has not yet become a real issue, it can be a short term solution. The biggest down side with gel is it only lasts about one year and turns black from dust and dirt, which is very unsightly and very difficult to remove. Gels run down the building when they get hot and present problems when it's time to paint the building. Over all, I don't recommend using gels for the benefit they provide.

A. We don't normally recommend trapping birds as the only solution for your bird abatement. Any birds that are trapped must be euthanize or set free. If they are set free, they will return to their original location. If the are euthanize, other birds will just take their place and your bird problem hasnít been resolved. We recommend using your money wisely and have permeate bird abatement measures installed and get rid of the birds and all the issues they bring.

A. Install window decals: http://www.nixalite.com/windowalertdecal.aspx Or, you can let your window get dirty, which we wouldn't like, since we are also window cleaners and need the work. There is proposed legislation in San Francisco to require all new building to have treated glass that is supposed to help prevent birds from flying into glass, but that legislation has not passed.

A. Yes is the short answer, but let's get a little more into the details. First of all, birds can spread over 60 diseases to humans and animals. From the many issues regarding diseases, I would definitely avoid the dust and spores from the feces. Also, feces dust can be brought into the buildings or homes through intake fans of air conditioners, wind blowing dust into windows & doors, and residents & customers bringing contaminants into the building on their shoes.

Bird dropping on entrance floors can easily be tracked into the building and onto the floors & carpet. Slip and fall issues are increased when bird droppings are near walkways and entrances, which result in lawsuits. Bird droppings also attract rats, fleas, ticks and mites, which all create additional problems. Pigeons are refereed to as flying rats and for good reason.

Bird droppings are also highly acidic and cause corrosion to the building, exterior trim, customers cars, roof tile and commonly block gutters, which create additional roof damage as a result if not quickly corrected.

Then there's the appearance of the building with birds, their droppings and customers being annoyed by the birds, which are not afraid of people. The list goes on, but I think you get the point and I'm sure you could add a few issues of your own.

Rest assured, your company image will be affected by this issue and not in a good way.

A. No. I'd like to tell you to just wait and see what happens, but the problem will just get worst, a lot worst. Most pigeons will multiply 6-10 per couple, per year and usually stay in the same area, which means there will be a lot more pigeons next year if you don't get this resolved and soon.

A. Yes, if the cleanup is very small, but be very careful and protect yourself from any dust from the feces and make sure you wear a face mask, gloves, goggles and disinfect entire area before and after your cleanup. If the cleanup job is very extensive, I would highly recommend a professional to avoid the risk of contamination thatís involved with feces. Also, make sure you have resolved the bird issue or the cleanup problem will become a regular project that you shouldnít be attempting on a regular basis.

A. We have many options, procedures and alternatives to control and abate the pigeons. It depends on where they are located, how long they have been there and what type of building & structure trim we have to work with.

The majority of our bird abatement jobs involve stainless steel spikes, shock track, netting, bird wire, bird coil, bird slide, Daddy-long-legs and a variety of other very effective options. It will depend mainly on the type & location of the birds and how long they have been there. Trapping might be an option in some cases, but is usually not the best way to go.

A. This is a very good question, but a very complicated one. It all depends on how many birds, where they are located, how long they have been at the location and a host of other questions. So, it all depends.

We offer a complimentary inspection to get a better idea of what you have and what it will take to resolve your issue. This is a free service and it will give both of us an idea of what it will take to vacate the birds and keep them out. And, donít forget, you will need to have their mess cleaned up to avoid other issues that are related to birds and their feces. Give us a call and let us make an onsite inspection, then give you some options to resolve your problem - And, there's no obligation.

In the long run, it's much more expensive not to get rid of your bird related issues ASAP...

A. We offer a 100% satisfaction guarantee. If your not happy, we return to fix, modify or repair any system we have installed. This does not include any damage from other sources, such as someone distroying or altering our spikes, shock track or netting. The warranty on this equipment is 10 years and should last far past that time if monitored and maintained on a regular basis.

A. We always include clean-up of the effected area prior to the installation of the bird abatement system, which includes disinfecting the entire area to make sure it doesn't create any dangers to the occupants.

A. Give us a call and lets see what your options are.

Back to top

The Advantages of Buying a AGR System
  1. The AGR glass restoration system was developed by one of the most respected, well known glass experts in the industry.
    1. Offers expert witness and consultation services in several glass related areas.
    2. Complete glass analysis to determine cause of scratch glass damage, with detailed microscopic reports.
    3. Glass restoration consultations, equipment and restoration services.
    4. Technical assistance and support for all the glass restoration equipment we offer.
    5. Offers several seminars during the year that covers glass restoration, tempered glass defects, graffiti film installation and a variety of other glass related topics.
    6. Continuous research and development to improve our glass restoration, equipment and consultation services.
  2. The first and only dry "closed face" glass restoration system.
    1. Controls glass dust created during glass restoration process. Much safer for operator and entire work environment.
    2. Helps keep restoration disc flat on glass during restoration process, which reduces surface distortion.
    3. Helps operator control equipment on glass.
    4. Keeps glass dust from entering grinder, which extends life of equipment.
    5. Draws heat away from glass and restoration disc. This helps reduce the risk of glass breakage and premature disc failure.
  3. Our glass restoration system was designed with simplicity and effectiveness in mind.
    1. Light weight equipment.
    2. One speed machine. Researched, tested and specifically selected to archive optimal performance and outstanding results.
    3. One size flexible backer pad for restoration and polishing disc.
    4. One size restoration and polishing discs.
    5. Limited number of restoration disc grades. Coarse, medium, fine, pre-polishing and polishing disc.
    6. Restoration disc are economical and long lasting.
  4. In house training, seminars, parts and service.
    1. We stock all parts for the all equipment we sell.
    2. Stocking all parts enables us to be able to ship parts same day.
    3. Repairs can be performed and equipment shipped same day by appointment.

Back to top

GLASS RESTORATION

Our restoration service includes a process by which the scratch is ground out of the glass, and then polished to a factory quality finish.

Contractor Services

We have since expanded our services to focus more on surface restoration of various substrates, including glass restoration and much more.

Bird Control

We have expanded our restoration service to include other services, such as granite restoration, window frame repairs, and more.

CONSULTATION

We help determine the causes, prevention and possible liability for glass replacement or its restoration.

Training

Our seminars cover a wide variety of topics to include: Safety precautions during the restoration process, customer expectations, and more.