Are you thinking about pressure washing your house or driveway? It’s a smart move, but it’s not a task that you can take on without preparation. Whether you DIY or hire a professional, there are some factors you should keep in mind.
Why Pressure Wash?
Do you even need to pressure wash your home? The short answer is yes. Cleaning the exterior of your home has many benefits for the health and safety of your family, not to mention your budget.
Health and Safety
Over time, mold, mildew, and algae can grow on the sides of your house and on your roof. The wind deposits pollen on your surfaces as well. All of these can irritate your sinuses and cause breathing problems, particularly if you have allergies or asthma.
In addition to allergens, dirt and debris on surfaces can pose a safety risk. Your roof, walkways, and driveway can become very slippery when wet. Weeds that grow up into cracks can pose a tripping risk and encourage the crack to widen. A wider crack can then buckle and create its own safety hazard.
Regular washing of the exterior areas of your home removes these substances before they can pose a health and safety risk.
Whether we mean to or not, we all judge houses by their appearance. For your own satisfaction, it can be great to come home to a clean exterior. But this cleanliness extends beyond your personal enjoyment. According to Paisley Painting, it’s best to use a pressure washer to clean your home’s exterior before painting.
Curb Appeal and Property Value
Having a freshly cleaned house can actually increase your curb appeal and raise the value of your home. Whether or not you plan to sell, you want your property value to be as high as possible!
Over time, the dirt that accumulates on exterior surfaces can lead to more severe damage that will require costly repairs.
When mold or mildew begins to grow, it will continue unless it is removed fully. It can quickly grow into and under siding, shingles, and trim, causing it to rot or break. This in turn compromises your inner walls as mold and moisture continue to push in.
As mentioned above, cracks in your sidewalk or driveway need to be cleaned regularly so they don’t harbor dirt and weeds. Your driveway should also be sealed at least once a year to help maintain its structural integrity. Before you can apply sealant, you must make sure that it is completely clean.
In order to prevent damage and expensive repairs, you should have your house and exterior surfaces cleaned on a regular basis.
Not Just the House
We often think of cleaning the walls of the house, whether it’s before a paint job, or just to keep it nice and clean. But the walls of your house are just one part of the exterior cleaning process.
Your roof may not be as visible to you as the walls, but it gets very dirty up there! The same dirt, mold, mildew, algae, and pollen that stick to your house are also sticking to your roof. This is unsightly and can be dangerously slick if you need to access the roof at some point. Make sure you include the roof in your pressure washing plans.
Deck and Patio
Your deck and patio get a lot of foot traffic, so they tend to be dirtier than the rest of your spaces. Whether you have a wood or concrete patio, it needs to be maintained yearly with a fresh application of sealant. You’ll first have to pressure wash it to make sure the sealant can stick fully.
Between sealant applications, you should still wash your patio or deck regularly to prevent dirt and stains from building up and causing slick spots.
Driveway and Walkways
The driveway can easily become one of the dirtiest places on your property. Not only does it get foot traffic, it also has dirty cars driving on it and possibly leaking oil and chemicals. You want to make sure that you are driveway cleaning properly and safely – periodic cleaning will also help remove stains before they become permanent.
Types of Pressure Washing
When you think of pressure washing, you probably imagine a strong spray of water, like an intense hose. But it’s a little more complicated than that. Different pressures and cleaning solutions are needed depending on the job at hand.
Typical Pressure Washing
This is probably more along the lines of what you expect from a pressure washing experience: it is a high pressure spray that cleans surfaces by the force of the water. Cleaning agents may be used, but not always.
High pressure washing is common for surfaces like driveways and walkways that are very dirty and can withstand a high PSI (not on concrete less than a year old)
A lot of the exterior washing that professionals do is actually soft washing. This means a lower amount of pressure. A wider spray nozzle may also be used to soften the spray.
Soft washing is great for house siding and roof cleaning because it doesn’t damage the surfaces. Often a special cleaning solution is used to help remove mold and mildew.
Downfalls of DIY
It can be tempting to want to rent a pressure washer and tackle this project on your own, but it may not be the best solution for you.
If you aren’t knowledgeable about the different PSI options, it’s easy to use too much pressure for the area you are cleaning. Too much pressure can damage your siding, your window seals, and more. You also need to make sure that you are using the correct cleaning solutions for your task. A professional cleaning service can take care of these questions for you.
Pressure washing can be dangerous. With such a strong spray of water, you can easily injure yourself or others if you don’t know the proper usage techniques.
Exterior Cleaning from Prime Power Clean
If you’re in the Los Angeles area, look no further than Prime Power Clean for your house washing needs. We have the expertise you need to make sure all the parts of your home’s exterior are cleaned safely and appropriately.