exterior of home

5 Mistakes Homeowners Make When Power Washing 

Summer is the perfect time to power wash your home, deck, walkways, and hardscape patio area. If your home has a build up of dirt, grime, and mold can it make your surfaces look unkept and unpolished. 

Many homeowners believe power washing to be a do-it-yourself project. However, as a professional painting company that specializes in power washing, we know that there are some big blunders you could make that could cause harm to your home.

Power washing may look pretty simple, right? Rent some equipment from your local hardware store, set aside some time on a weekend, and aim the hose at the object you want to clean. Unfortunately, what may seem straightforward has some potential mistakes that you will want to avoid if you are trying this technique on your own. 

cape cod home

#1 Too Much Pressure 

What happens to wood, vinyl, or concrete when it is put under too much water pressure? The wood could splinter, vinyl could crack, and the concrete could show signs of etching. These are all things you want to avoid when power washing your house. 

To prevent putting your surfaces under too much pressure, start by reading the directions with the equipment. Understand the psi you will be using and how far away from the surface you should be standing. 

Professional power washers, like our team at Jerry Enos Painting, use high end equipment that they have used countless times and understand the distance to pressure ratio that is appropriate for all types of surfaces. 

#2 Washing Out of Sequence 

Before you start power washing all of the surface you want to clean, have a plan. 

If you intend to wash your home, walkways, and patio area, plan what area to start with like the exterior of your home. The runoff may wash over your walkway but you will clean that up as you head to that area next. Always keep in mind where the water and spray will head next so you don’t have to re-wash an area because of dirty runoff. 

landscaping around a house

#3 Not Protecting Landscaping 

If you are planning to power wash near your plantings you may want to use some sort of protection for the area. At the very least water down the plantings, shrubs, and ornamental trees so the detergent doesn’t stick to the greenery and cause stains or burns later. 

If you have an area of the garden that tends to erode with rain water, plan to move the excess water away from a broom or you may end up with puddles and eroded garden dirt. 

#4 Using Incorrect Attachments

One major blunder for homeowners who are not used to using power washing equipment is using the attachments without knowing what they are doing. Specialized attachments can help clean specific types of surfaces so ask for a demonstration before you rent. Or you could ensure a professional look by skipping the work and hiring our team to get it done. 

#5 Using Only Water 

While a power washer has enough force to remove most grime and dirt, you may want to use a detergent to clean areas that have been neglected or those that have visible mold or mildew to prevent regrowth. You could choose a gentle detergent for dirt or more powerful chemicals to get rid of mold or mildew. 

Talk to our crew for more tips on power washing or to set up an appointment for our team to tackle your cleaning job.