Power washing your home's exterior is a good way to loosen and remove stubborn dirt and debris, and make your house look well-cared for. It's especially important to keep your home's exterior as clean as possible if it's up for sale as it will increase it's curb appeal.
You can hire a professional cleaning company to do the dirty work for you, or you can rent or buy a pressure washer and tackle the chore yourself. Purchasing a machine may be worth the investment if you'd like to power wash other areas of your home, such as flooring.
While regular soap and water will clean your home's exterior on basic level, the powerful stream of water from a pressure washer will penetrate the nooks and crannies of textured siding, quickly rinsing away years of dirt and grime.
Pressure washing is also an eco-friendly alternative to using harsh chemicals to clean your home, as toxic cleaners will run off the siding and penetrate the groundwater. You can pressure wash almost any type of exterior, such as aluminum or vinyl sidings, brick and stucco.
Here are some tips for safely and effectively power washing your home:
1. Protect Foliage
If you have delicate plants, flowers, bushes or any other type of foliage around your home, cover them to avoid damage from the pressure washer. Avoid directly hitting the greenery with the powerful blasts of water.
2. Choose a Power Washer Nozzle
Most power washers come with a choice of nozzles to use, such as ones featuring 25- and 15-degree water flows. The higher the number the less powerful and direct the flow, so pick a nozzle that gives you the power that you need to get the job done.
Lower-degree nozzles can damage some types of home exteriors, such as wood or stucco, so avoid using them on these materials. If you aren't sure what type of nozzle to use, start with a less powerful flow and work your way up as needed.
3. Decide if You Need Soap
Since the power washer's water flow is so direct, you may not need to use soap at all. If still notice some stubborn dirt and debris on the siding, you can use a non-toxic, environmentally friendly detergent to aid the cleaning process.
You can also equip the power washer with a deep-cleaning brush or extension wand to get in hard-to-reach areas and the gutters.