Best Van for Window Cleaning

 

 

In this article we will not try to argue the case for any particular van to be considered to be the best van for window cleaning, rather to look at the credentials of each type of vehicle.  This will arm you with the information needed to make an informed decision yourself, because what may suit you may not suite me as you may have very different circumstances and therefore requirements when choosing a van for your window cleaning business.

Weight

This is a big one to consider. Choosing something smaller like a Vauxhall combo, Citroen berlingo or peugeot partner as your window cleaning van,

may tick all of the boxes, however one thing to consider with this smaller size of vehicle is the weight. Whilst the manufacturers will tell you that the van will easily carry the weigh of the water tank and other equipment, you may find as I did that carrying a full load and driving over many speed humps per day will take its toll on the vans suspension.  When I my self ran vehicles of this size I was constantly replacing track rod ends, not to mention wheel bearings.  Both fairly expensive repairs at the garage.

Larger vehicles like transit vans can I believe cops better with the weight issue. As can four wheel drive pick up trucks like the Nissan Navara. volkswagen amarok mitsubishi l200 or Toyota Hilux.

Physical size

If you are using your van for wfp window cleaning (water fed pole) then as well as the tank and hose reel, something to consider is the physical size for your pole. A way around this is to use rhino roof rack pipe tube carriers. A great alternative that I have seen many window cleaners use on their vehicles. It can mean that you can get away with a smaller vehicle and the on going savings can soon outweigh the price of the rhino carrier.


How you can Half your Fuel Costs.

An option that few window cleaners seen to have embraced as yet is the option of an electric van.  Nissan now make the E-NV200.  Not only is this a great opportunity to make fuel savings but also an option to promote your window cleaning business as a Green, environmental company.  

LPG can also be a great option, however a rough calculation has shown that this only really works out if you can find a used, already converted vehicle as the cost of conversion can counteract any fuel saving if the van is only used for short local journeys. A good place to look for a van that has already been converted is Autotrader as you can specify LPG in the search criteria.   If you can find a window cleaning  van for sale that has already been converted then you can expect to get about the same miles per gallon as a petrol version but pay about half for the fuel at the pump.

Some of the larger vans are less economical.  It would only offer a saving it it meant that you didn’t need to return to base so often to fill up and this costs fuel and more importantly time.

How you can run a 4x4 pick up for the same price as a small van

My Window Cleaning Truck

Trucks are the most expensive option.  with many only getting in the low 20’s miles per gallon.  Many people don’t realise that you can run a nice truck for the same as a small van if the circumstances are right.  I myself used to have a car for use with my family and a vauxhall combo van for work.  I was paying out two lots of everything from insurance to road tax, MOT’s and even car shampoo!  I sold both vehicles and purchased a Nissan Navara.  The truck has leather interior and looks amazing with its Truckman top..  Being a UK commercial vehicle the road tax stayed the same £220.00 per year (2018/2019)  My total other costs of insurance, tax on my second car etc wend down by £750.00 per year.  My running costs of increased fuel etc went up by the same (£750.00).  So it basically cost me the same.  My justification for the change was that I was spending 80% of my time in an old van and only 20% of my time in my nice car.  Now I spend all of my time in something g much nicer.  I also find that the 4x4 copes better in bad weather and muddy fields (some of my window cleaning customers in in the country side).  I also find that the pick up copes with the weight issue far better.  


Can you afford it?

Personally I find that the best way to purchase a van is to search for the newest lowest milage best history van / truck that you can afford, and buy it!  There are other options such as a window cleaning van lease.  with this option you will have to look after the van as it will be inspected when you return the vehicle.  Other options include purchase leasing, hire purchase and a range of other ways to finance a van.  Its is though important to remember that if you are not registered for VAT then a new vehicle will mean that you loose the 20% VAT as soon as you leave the garage.  If you are not registered for VAT then double check with private advertisers if VAT has got to be added to the advertised price.  You wouldn’t want to drive hundreds of miles for a ten thousand pounds van only to arrive and find that it is actually twelve thousand pounds

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