Allen Norwood

Fun ideas for Father’s Day

I’ve been washing the house this week. Wetting down the siding, spraying on cleaning solution, letting it soak a bit, then rinsing it off with a strong blast from the hose.

That meant washing the windows, too, of course. The cleaning liquid spots the windows if I don’t squeegee the glass as I go. Letting the cleaning stuff dry on the glass only makes the job worse.

I took a break in the shade with a Diet Dr Pepper and considered what I’d like for Father’s Day.

Helpful public relations types always send out gift suggestions this time of year, and a release about an innovative product caught my eye. I promise I am not making this up: It’s a robot that washes windows.

It’s called the WINBOT 7, and the manufacturer says you set it and forget about cleaning windows the old-fashioned way. Spray cleaning solution onto a microfiber pad on the front edge of the robot. The front pad scrubs, a squeegee on the robot’s belly removes dirt and liquid, then a rear microfiber pad wipes the window dry.

The release says you’ll find it at Amazon, Best Buy, Bed Bath and Beyond and other retailers with prices starting at $349. Information: www.ecovacsrobotics.com.

The gizmo, about the size of a paperback book, holds to the window glass with a power suction vacuum.

In a YouTube video, it looks like a giant square beetle scuttling across the glass.

One reason to wash the house is to prepare the deck for staining.

I replaced some cracked and twisted boards last year, and slapped a quick coat of stain onto the new lumber. This year the entire deck will get a coat of semitransparent stain.

Just so happens that I received a release about a deck staining gadget, too. It’s the Renuvo deck stain application tool from Wagner SprayTech (www.wagnerspraytech.com).

It looks sort of like a carpet sweeper. Wagner says the tool allows deck owners to apply stain while standing up, instead of hunched over a brush. It holds a half-gallon of stain, so there’s no need to constantly dip a brush or roller.

A pad spreads the stain, and a groove brush applies stain between boards.

Renuvo handles oil- and water-based stains, and the user controls the flow with a trigger on the handle. Suggested price is $34.99.

The deck staining tool is a lot less expensive but, if anybody around here asks, I’m going to hold out for the window washing robot.

I’ll kick back in the shade with my Diet Dr Pepper and watch the electronic beetle scour the windows ...

While the Portacool Cyclone 1000 evaporative cooler lowers the temperature on the porch by as much 25 degrees! That’s what the release says, anyway. Learn more at www.portacool.com. Plug it in and cool up to 300 square feet of outdoor space!

Special to the Observer: homeinfo@charter.net

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