KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Since there have been windows there has been the need to clean dirt and grime off of them. As buildings got taller, the job got more dangerous, often requiring a person to dangle off the edge with a squeegee.

A Kansas City startup, DroneWash is taking a new approach to that age-old profession, using a massive drone to wash and rinse windows around the metro.

“Any time we breakig this out and people see it…you see the ‘wow look’ on their face,” said DroneWash’s Leland Sanders.

The idea came about when Sanders and his business partner, Andrew Brain, started throwing around ideas for how to more efficiently clean windows. Brain’s real estate business was seeing increasingly large window-washing bills.

“Our window washing bills were just getting out of control and I kept thinking there ha to be a better way to do this and a safer way to do this,” Brain said.

After some research, training, and hiring a pilot, Brain said they can get windows 90 to 95 percent as clean as a window washer with a squeegee for roughly one-sixth of the cost of a traditional window-washing company.

“I don’t need a hazard-pay worker in an unsafe position,” Brain said. “We’re able to hire a pilot at a much more affordable rate. And the Insurance for window cleaning is just astronomical.”

FAA regulations limit DroneWash to flying their tethered drone only as high as they need to for cleaning buildings that are 12 stories tall. The hope is that as drone technology and regulations change, they could one day go higher and take on clients who own bigger buildings.

Their business is especially well-suited for older structures that often are not outfitted to support window washing scaffolding, like the Westport Junior High School building that’s been reimagined as the Westport Commons Plexpod.

DroneWash is wrapping up its trial period with it’s first paying customer scheduled for next week. The hope is to perfect the business model in Kansas City and then expand to cities throughout the Midwest and eventually, throughout the country.

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