Cleaning & Home Maintenance

Pressure Wash 101 – Everything You Need to Know About This Cleaning Method

Pressure washing, also known as power washing, is a cleaning method that uses high-powered water sprays to remove dirt, grime, mold and mildew. It is an effective way to clean outdoor surfaces such as decks, driveways, exterior siding, roofs, patios and pool areas. However, it is important to understand that this type of cleaning can damage surfaces if done incorrectly. To prevent costly repairs and damage, you should always use a professional pressure washer with proper equipment and knowledge of how to operate the machine properly.

A pressure washer is a tool that is attached to a garden hose to increase the amount of water flow and the pressure of the spray. It can be powered by either gas or electricity and can vary in strength from 1,000 to 3,000 pounds per square inch (PSI). To avoid damage, it is essential to read the manufacturer’s instructions carefully and select the correct nozzle for your job. Using the wrong nozzle can cause damage to delicate surfaces such as glass, fiberglass or wood.

Unlike soft washing, which can be used on most surfaces, including brick, vinyl and aluminum, pressure washing is most effective for concrete, metals, asphalt and other hard materials. It is also recommended for stripping paint from both metal and wood, renovating faded decks and removing oil and grease from concrete. However, it is not a good idea for softer surfaces such as fiberglass, painted surfaces or bottle-dash or rock-dash stucco, and should only be used by professionals who are familiar with proper equipment and technique.

If you plan on using your pressure washer to clean the exterior of your home, it is recommended to use a detergent solution made specifically for house siding. These products are formulated to dissolve and bond with dirt and debris, making it easier for the water pressure to wash them away. They can be found at most hardware and home improvement stores. Ensure that you choose an environmentally friendly solution and follow the directions on the product’s label for dilution.

It is also a good idea to invest in a brush attachment for your pressure washer. These can be purchased for less than $40 and can be very useful when cleaning around wheelie garbage bins, cars or boats. You can even use them on your gutters to remove leaves and twigs that tend to accumulate there.

For those who are interested in starting their own pressure washing business, this book covers topics such as getting customers, requirements before beginning a project, pricing, tips for buying and maintaining equipment, and marketing. It also provides checklists, work pricing templates and addresses common cleaning questions like wood cleaning, mix ratios and sales washing. It is an excellent resource for anyone who is serious about starting a pressure washing business. For more details visit