What to Expect From Your WaterFed® System

Amy LavinWaterFed®, Window Cleaning8 Comments

Congratulations on your new WaterFed® system! We feel confident once you become familiar with your system, you’ll be as big a WaterFed® fan as we are.

To begin, if you just purchased your WaterFed® system, have you received an email from us about it? These emails include helpful videos and manuals to get you started and feeling confident about your new cart. If you have not received this email, these resources can also be found on each carts product page. Now that you have your system, you’re ready to clean anything and everything, right? We have created this post so that you know what to expect from your system and can set you and your business up for success.

The first thing that will help you best understand your system is to understand what WaterFed® is. If you already know what it is, skip this part. If you don’t, click to expand the section below.

The pressure you can expect from your system varies on a few different factors. The one thing you should know is that your WaterFed® system is not a pressure washer. It’s important to note is that although it seems like pressure would make a big difference, that is not where the magic of your WaterFed ® system comes from. With that being said, it is also important that you know what to expect with your specific type of system.

DI vs. Multistage vs. Multistage with a Pump

The first factor is the number and type of filters being used in your system. If you are using a strictly DI filter system, your water passes through one to two filters max. This is a fairly easy journey to get through so strictly DI filter systems tend to have a nice pressure when the flow comes out of your WaterFed ® brush. The DI system usually produces a steady stream of about 5 gallons per minute and costs roughly about $1 to $2 per gallon. The cost is higher per gallon but the process is simpler and the outpouring flow pressure is similar to that of tap water pressure.

A multistage system has a low-pressure outcome, think slightly more pressure than a trickle. This is because the water travels through more filters, essentially slowing the process down. By adding a few more filters, a multistage system will produce a significantly lighter pressure than that of a DI system. When we use a multistage WaterFed ® system on our 60 PSI tap, about 0.65 gallons per minute are produced, as opposed to five gallons per minute from a strictly DI system. The kicker is in the cost. For a multistage WaterFed ® system, it costs about $0.02 per gallon. Even though flow is restricted by the additional filtration, your multistage is much more efficient and cost effective in producing clean water. This is also why it is recommended you use a multistage WaterFed ® system if you regularly use your WF system to clean. It boils down to the cost of the replacement filters. Also, because the beauty of this system is not in the pressure/flow, but rather in the purity of the water, it helps to think of the multistage WaterFed ® system as a team of workers relying on each other, rather than a one manned army like the DI systems.

The last WaterFed ® option is to have a multistage system with a pump. The pump, of course, speeds the process along. It pushes the water through each filter, rather than letting the tap pressure or gravity itself take the lead. These are great systems for those cleaners looking to use their system frequently and for windows 4 stories or higher. In many cases, even if you aren’t planning to go higher than 4 stories, you will still want a pump because it will allow you to work faster. A multistage system with a pump produces about 0.75 to 2 gallons a minute, but stays consistent with $0.02 per gallon. This means that the pressure of the water coming out will be stronger than a multistage system without a pump, allowing you to go higher and work faster.

Regardless of the WF system you have, the water pressure from these systems is enough to clean and rinse windows.

Another factor that can affect your WaterFed ® outflow pressure is the surrounding areas temperature. The tendency is when it gets cold; the pressure decreases a bit because molecules in the RO membrane shrink in the cold, which makes it a tighter squeeze for water to get through.

Your WaterFed ® system will work best if you flush the RO filter after every use. To do this, begin by turning off your system’s pump if it has one. Next, fully open the bypass. Turn off the water to the pole by shutting off the quick release valve that connects your hose reel to your pole. Allow water to exit from the bypass for 2-3 minutes. After, turn the source water off, you are good to go! This will make the RO filter last much longer, in turn of course, saving you money! 

TDS Levels 

Your TDS (Total Dissolved Solids) meter levels will eventually read the same thing, of course, zero with new filters, because there is nothing left in the water to read. However, it is important to know what kind of reading you can expect after each filter. Assume you start with 100 TDS. With a DI filter system, your TDS meter will read zero. This is because it went through only one filter. With multistage filter WaterFed ® systems, your reading will be very different. After the first filter, the Sediment/Carbon filter, your water will still read 100 TDS but the filter has removed chlorine and larger sediment that might have been in it prior. This is important because your RO filter will be damaged by chlorine. From there, the water travels to your RO filter. After which, it is very normal for your TDS meter to read somewhere between 2-10. You should not be alarmed if and when your meter does not read zero after the RO filter. The process is not complete! Next, the water travels through the DI filter. After this process, your TDS read should be zero. Below, we have included a small chart to help illustrate this point.

It is easy to see that the DI system is much more of a simple process than a multistage WaterFed ® system, so why bother? It comes down to price. A DI system costs $1 to $2 per gallon and is best for infrequent usage. Meanwhile, a multistage system costs $0.02 per gallon and is recommended for frequent use. If you were to try and use your DI system as often as your multistage system, you would find that the DI system would end up costing you an arm and a leg because of filter replacement costs.
Multistage Filter System TDS Reading Chart

Soapy Windows

When you get your WaterFed® system rolling, you may have to do a bit of damage control with the windows you are going to clean. Soapy windows are common for people to see when they first begin using a WaterFed® system. This is due to past window cleaning efforts, in which soap dries onto the outer edges of the window and usually comes back to life because of the new, constant flow of water from your system. To fix this, simply rinse the soapy water off with your system. You may have to do several rinses to get rid of all of the soap residue. This will take some extra time, but you’ll only have to do it the first time you clean that window.

We could go on and on about how wonderful WaterFed® is, but we’ll try and keep that to a minimum. However, it is important to know what to expect from your WF system. We have many WaterFed® resources on both our blog and our YouTube channel and will continue to create more to better assist you in your WF cleaning endeavors. If there is a matter that has not been addressed in our resources, give us a call and we will help you with any WaterFed® questions you may have! 

8 Comments on “What to Expect From Your WaterFed® System”

  1. Hi ABC
    Nice to see this new waterfed pole system in the market. Have been taking part in window cleaning business and so much interested to have this system to boost my business. Am based in KENYA and how can i get these window washing kits?. please assist me my contacts is here +254 714 872 211 or +254 734 148 026. I will be much more happy if we talk about business. thanks in advance.
    Yours faithfully
    Samuel Orako

  2. I find that the system works best when the sun is not facing the glass. I use a simple DI system because the RO is expensive, compared with the Eagle IPC cart. I’ve noticed that hardness or chlorine, destroys the RO. As of right now, the cost of carbon filters and resin combined is less than the cost of an RO membrane

  3. We used a water fed system for cleaning windows in the early 90’s. We collected rain water, and used it before deonizing. Is this still a viable practice in the industry?

    1. Hey Kyle,
      Thanks for the comment! At this point, the norm in the industry is to use water from a tap to push water through a WaterFed system because of the power of the flow. Water pressure helps the water make it’s way through the filters and helps push the water up to the pole to reach the windows. Also, since the water is constantly running, you are able to run the system significantly longer because the source of water is not limited. We do, however, have a system that uses stored water and a pump to mimic the water pressure. This system, the DS9, would probably work well with rainwater collection (in the sense that the system uses a limited amount of water, as opposed to free-flowing from a tap. There is the possible issue of the water itself using the filters more quickly because of its makeup, though). Let us know if you want more information on the new types of systems, we’d love to chat more!

    1. Hey! Thanks for the question!
      We’d suggest the SG2, the NXT5, or the Enterprise. These systems all have power to them that will let them reach the dome. Live Chat us or give us a call to talk more WaterFed!

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