Power washing has earned its reputation as one of the best methods to clean hard-to-remove grime, dirt, stains, and grease from different surfaces. As a method to clean house siding, it is unbeatable. It’s quick, easy, and shows immediate results. Professional cleaners turn to low-pressure power washing to get the perfectly pristine clean their clients expect.
How the Pros Wash House Siding with Low-Pressure
Professionals choose low-pressure washing because it is gentler than conventional power washing. Low-pressure washing does not rely solely on water to force dirt off the siding. Instead, it uses a combination of water and cleaning agents to get the dirt and grime off of the siding.
To use low-pressure for cleaning house sidings, professionals typically prepare the following equipment.
-Attachments and accessories
-Cleaning agents and detergents
There are two types of power washers – ones that use gas and ones that use electrical power. Gas washers are typically more powerful than electric types, which means they can complete a job in a shorter time. Electric types can perform as good a job as gas-powered ones but they will take longer to finish.
Another key consideration is pressure which is indicated as PSI (pounds of force per square inch) or GPM (gallons per minute). In most cases, a better indicator would be GPM if a nozzle will be attached to the hose. A minimum of 2.3 GPM should suffice for most jobs.
The most important attachment for a power washer is the nozzle. There are different nozzle tips that may be used for the majority of jobs, the most common of which are angled, brush, and soaping tips. An extension wand is also an indispensable accessory that will make reaching high surfaces easier.
Cleaning agents such as soap/detergents and bleach are required for low-pressure washing. Keep in mind that specific formulas are used for different surfaces, which means that what would work for wood and vinyl may not work well for brick and stucco. There are also environmentally-friendly cleaning agents that are safer to use but are as effective as commercial detergents.
Prepping for the Job
Here’s how the pros wash house siding with low-pressure washer:
Using protective gear
Cleaning contractors use gloves, boots, and goggles to keep the skin and face protected from water and cleaning agents.
Checking the type of material to be washed
The cleaning agent must be compatible with the type of material the siding is made of. This will ensure effective cleaning and prevent damage.
Checking and clearing the area
Power lines, vehicles, and other outdoor items are checked and removed to ensure safety and avoid accidents. Older homes are typically checked for lead paint and asbestos. Any electrical outlets located outdoors are also switched off to prevent electrocution and damage to the home. Any open portions such as vents and windows are closed, taped over or wrapped with plastic to prevent water from seeping into the house.
Checking the wash for water pressure
The water coming out of the hose should be strong but not strong enough to cause pain if you test it with the palm of your hand. If the pressure is insufficient, make the proper adjustments before starting the job.
Preparing the power washer
The pressure washer is attached to the garden hose. The soap tube is inserted and the proper nozzle is attached. Once the faucet is turned on, the soapy water is then applied onto the house siding starting at the bottom. Once an area is finished, leave the cleaning agent for about 5 or 10 minutes to allow it to work. For thicker or dirtier sidings, allow the detergent to sit on the surface longer.
Once done, the detergent may be washed down with plain water using the washer and an angled nozzle. Rinse the siding from top to bottom. To increase the pressure slightly, hold the wand about 12 inches from the siding and parallel to the ground. Allow the surface to dry completely.