How to clean: long tools, ladders, or call in a pro

January 19, 2003|By Joni Guhne

Owners of two-story ceilings face a major problem: How to clean those impossible-to-reach spaces.

One way is to make it easier to clean ceiling beams by first applying a coat of polish, said Jackie Jenkins, manager of Maid to Perfection, a cleaning firm in Severna Park.

Jenkins uses extension tools to tackle 9-foot to 10-foot ceilings. High ceilings can require professionals accustomed to climbing 22-foot extension ladders, he said.

Cleaning companies usually charge by the hour, and they get more for difficult jobs.

Elaborate chandeliers, often used to illuminate foyers with high ceilings, require special care. Cleaning them, either by using a ladder or by dismantling them, is tedious, Jenkins said. It can add an additional $50 to $200 to the cleaning bill.

One option available to homeowners is a motorized light lift. Designed to save money over time by reducing cleaning costs, the lift raises and lowers a chandelier manually or automatically. Lift prices range from $800 for a device that can support 200 pounds to more than $1,800 for one that supports 700 pounds.

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