We have liftoff: Local business uses drone to clean exterior of the Artesian

Drew Butler
The Daily Ardmoreite
Freshline Pro's use a drone to deliver a special cleaning solution to clean the exterior of the Artesian Hotel while a worker on the ground uses a hose to rinse the building.

The team from Freshine Pro's was in Sulphur all week cleaning the exterior of the Artesian in a unique and innovative way. Passersby turned their heads and stopped to take photos as workers used a drone to complete the task.

Freshine Pro's owner Brian Davis said he was excited to be using a new form of technology to get the cleaning job done.

"I've been researching this since 2017," Davis said. "After looking at all my options I decided it was a much better deal to lease the drone instead of buying my own so I've partnered up with Lucid Drone Technologies out of Greenville, N.C. We've been out here all week, and it's really been fun to watch.

The drone itself is seven feet in diameter and weighs about 20 pounds. A hose containing a solution of a biodegradable cleaning agent, a surfactant (a compound that lowers the surface tension between two liquids) and water was attached to the drone to spray the building down. A crew on the ground then rinsed the building off with water coming out of a 4,000 gallon water truck.

Davis said keeping his crew safe and on the ground was his main motivation into using a drone to clean the multistory building.

"I'm all about safety, and I want to keep my guys on the ground as much as possible," Davis said. "We have the technology and the chemistry now to use a drone to get up there and clean it. We don't have to put people up there and risk injury or death if they accidentally fell."

He said the soft washing technique he used on the building is not only good for bricks and stucco, it's also good for roofs and vinyl siding. Not only does it make the appearance of buildings look better, it also makes them last longer because it kills the bacteria that eats away at the surface.

"One of the big problems is gloeocapsa magma," Davis said. "If you've ever seen the black stuff on roofs or running down the side of a building, that it. It's a living organism that feeds off the limestone content and makes things degrade faster."