Pressure Washing Around Your Home

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Pressure cleaning uses a powerful spray of water to quickly clean off a home's external walls, driveways and patios. While most often used for house cleaning, pressure washing can also prepare a surface for new paint.

Pressure Cleaning Steps

Only use cleaning solutions recommended by the pressure cleaning machine's manufacturer. Use of house washing cleaners not recommended by the manufacturer can damage the pressure washer.

To pressure wash your house, follow these steps:

  1. Before pressure washing your house, make sure all windows are securely fastened and sealed. Wet down the wall before spraying with cleaning solution to prevent the cleaner from drying to the wall.
  2. Add cleaning solution to the pressure washer according to the manufacturer's instructions. Spray the cleaner on the wall using low pressure, applying the cleaning solution to the bottom of the wall and working upwards. Let the cleaning solution sit for five to ten minutes.
  3. Increase the pressure on the washer, and spray off the cleaning solution. Spray continuously while moving back and forth. Keep the nozzle of the spray wand angled downward and keep a distance of at least three to four feet between the nozzle and the wall.
  4. Avoid keeping the spray focused on one area for too long, as the force of the water can damage the surface, strip paint, shatter lighting fixtures or force water through leaks in windows.

Pressure Washing and Paint Preparation

Pressure cleaning can be used to clean surfaces and scour existing paint finishes prior to painting. Be cautious if you have old paint on your house that you believe may contain lead. Lead is most often seen in paint from the 1970s, and needs careful removal. Contact the Environmental Protection Agency at 1-800-424-LEAD to ask for advice when taking any steps to remove lead-based paint.

House Washing Tips

When you pressure wash your house, don't forget these tips:

  • Avoid pressure washing light fixtures. The spray can break fixtures and cause electric shorts.
  • Cover all electric outlets before house washing.
  • Never use pressure-washing equipment with a ladder. The water pressure can knock you over.
  • Pressure cleaning mold only spreads mold to other areas.
  • Pressure washing can damage wood. Check before washing decks and wood finishes.
  • Wear goggles to protect your face.

Pressure Washing Services

Homeowners can purchase pressure-washing equipment or rent a power washer from most hardware stores. You can also hire a house cleaning service that will provide its own pressure cleaning equipment.

Need More Help?

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