Are you ready to do some outdoor cleaning? A pressure washer can be a great tool for cleaning most of your exterior surfaces. But before you start, make sure you know which type of power washing is right for your project.
Pressure washing is a popular cleaning method, but did you know that you might actually need to do a soft wash instead?
Pressure washing surfaces like the walls of your home and roofs can cause costly damage. Let’s take a look at the different types of pressure washing and see which one you need.
Pressure washing basics
A pressure washer, sometimes called a power washer, is a handy machine that uses pressurized water to clean surfaces. You can also siphon chemical through an injector (if equipped) to quickly apply to the area being cleaned.
Why should I pressure wash?
A pressure washer can be great for cleaning outdoor surfaces like your driveway, roof, walkways and your home. And you definitely want to keep those areas clean to avoid the growth of mold and mildew! When dirt piles up or mold and mildew grow unchecked, you can end up with permanent damage to your home. Save yourself the stress and cost of repairs by keeping everything nice and clean.
You can also use a pressure washer for your other outdoor cleaning. Are you ready to wash your windows or patio furniture? A pressure washer can make the job go smoothly and quickly. Not only does it increase curb appeal, it also keeps your belongings in great condition.
How to choose a pressure washer
You can rent, buy, or hire a professional to take care of it for you.
When buying or renting, think about what you will be cleaning and your level of comfort using the machine. Opt for a smaller model if this is new for you. You can choose between gas and electric models. And look for one with a soap tank if you plan to use a cleaning solution.
There are several options of spray nozzles that attach to power washers. You’ll need to make sure you choose the right spray nozzle for the job.
Red (0 degree). Honestly, as a homeowner you don’t need this one. It’s dangerous and the risks outweigh the benefits. It can be used for metal and concrete.
Yellow (15 degree). This is a high pressure spray that is great for stripping paint or removing tough stains.
Green (25 degree). This nozzle works for almost anything you need – it provides some pressure to clean dirt off your surfaces, but it isn’t so strong that it will cause damage immediately.
White (40 degree). Use this nozzle to rinse off cleaning solution, and for a gentle spray. It works well for houses, windows, and cars.
Black (soap nozzle). Need to apply a detergent? This nozzle will pull from the soap tank and spray the solution for you.
When to use high pressure
Pressure washing with the green or yellow nozzle can be a great option when you need to clean a very dirty, solid surface. It’s the right choice for you if you are cleaning hard surfaces, like:
- Brick or concrete sidewalks or walkways
- Paved patios
What is soft washing?
Soft washing is a technique that uses a wider spray nozzle which lowers the pressure of the water. It’s stronger than a standard garden hose, but the PSI isn’t as high as it is with pressure washing.
Generally, you add a cleaning solution to the power washer when you soft wash. This works great if you need to spray the cleaner on a large surface, like your home. Soft washing is a method that concentrates more on the chemicals doing the cleaning rather than using high-pressure to remove the algae & mold.
Soft washing provides a gentle spray, but still a powerful way to clean your exterior!
Always soft wash your house!
Never pressure wash your house with a high pressure nozzle! High pressure washing can damage your homes’ exterior walls & roof. You should choose soft washing for your cleaning your home.
Soft washing is your go-to method for:
- All home exterior vertical walls
- Wood patios or decks
- Patio furniture
- Miscellaneous outdoor items (like large planters)
If you have mold, mildew, or algae on your siding, a soft wash with a bleach or cleaning solution will clean the surface gently.
Don’t be tempted to choose a super high pressure just because it seems like it will do the job better. Make sure you are using the right pressure for the items you are cleaning. The safest option is to use the lowest PSI that will still do the job and apply the proper chemical for cleaning.
Whether you choose to pressure wash or soft wash your outdoor items, be sure to do so safely. Always wear eye protection and closed toe shoes. Be aware of your surroundings and make sure to never point the sprayer at yourself or another person.