How to Clean Siding Without a Pressure Washer: 7 Tips
Cleaning siding is easiest with a pressure washer—there is no doubt about that. However, if you don’t have a pressure washer, you can clean the siding without one. In fact, cleaning without one of these powered machines also makes it a bit easier to spot clean and may be easier on the siding. For instance, you should never clean wood with a pressure washer, as it can damage it.
There are many different cleaners available and methods you can try. The best option largely depends on your siding and how dirty it is—dirtier siding will need extra attention. Here are some tips to make cleaning easier.
The 7 Tips on How to Clean Siding Without a Pressure Washer
1. Consider Your Siding Material
There are many different kinds of siding out there, and they should not all be cleaned the same way. Therefore, it’s vital that you consider the type of siding you’re working with. Some particular products also have very specific guidelines for cleaning.
The easiest way to prevent damage to your siding is to follow the manufacturing guidelines that should have come with the siding. However, you can also find most of these guidelines online.
2. Do a Test Cleaning
Even if you follow manufacturer recommendations, you should do a test cleaning on a small part of your siding that is out of the way. This test cleaning helps ensure that your cleaning products and method won’t damage the siding. It is better to damage a small part of the siding in an out-of-the-way location than a whole side.
We recommend cleaning a square foot area the day before. Then, check for any damage the next day. You can wash the rest of your siding similarly if there isn’t any.
3. Use Extra Caution with Wood
Wood can splinter easier than other types of siding so you should be very cautious when cleaning it. Don’t apply much water pressure. Otherwise, it can damage the wood or cause rot. Using a power washer is a big no-no. Even though you aren’t using a pressure washer, you should still be cautious even when using a garden hose attachment.
4. Get an Outdoor Cleaning Wand
Even without a pressure washer, we recommend having common tools to make the process much easier. An outdoor cleaning wand is one of these tools. These wands are long poles with a brush on the end that you attach to your garden hose. These aren’t expensive, but they’re vital for cleaning anything above your head.
For two-story houses, you’ll probably need a ladder, as well. Remember to have someone spot you when using this tool on a ladder, as it can be easy to lose your balance.
Also, be sure your garden hose can reach all the way around your house. You’ll need to invest in a longer one if it can’t.
5. Don’t Forget Safety Equipment
We recommend wearing protective gloves and goggles when cleaning your house. You never know when debris may jump back and hit you. Plus, the gloves can prevent your hands from being exposed to too much water and soap, which can have a drying effect.
Wear a mask if you anticipate cleaning mold. You’ll need the appropriate filter to prevent mold spores from reaching your lungs. If you have long hair, put it up and add a hair net to keep the mold out of your hair, too.
6. Use the Correct Cleaning Solution
There is a lot to consider when making your cleaning solution. You could use many different solutions, so take caution to pick the best one. Here is a quick overview of each solution:
After washing with a wand, you’ll need to grab a brush and work on the particularly troublesome areas. Start with the gentlest option, such as a cloth. Then, move on to a bristle brush. If the area is particularly hard to reach, you may need a quality outdoor cleaning wand to scrub the area. If an area is particularly dirty, you can use a wire brush. After you’ve given the whole area a good scrubbing, rinse it with a bucket of water.
We recommend cleaning your siding yearly if possible. You don’t want the dirt and grime to build up, making cleaning more difficult when you get to it. How exactly you should clean your siding will vary. It depends on how dirty it is, your available tools, and the type of siding. Certain siding will need a gentler hand than other siding types.
We recommend investing in a quality outdoor cleaning wand to make the whole process go smoother. Also, ensure that your hose can reach all the areas of your house that you want to clean.
Featured Image Credit: pompous, Shutterstock