How to Pressure Wash Dirt from Exterior Wood and Siding - dummies

How to Pressure Wash Dirt from Exterior Wood and Siding

By Gill Chilton

After all the winter storms have passed, the wind and rain come to an end, your exterior wood and siding may need cleaned. What’s that? You say that’s not your first springtime desire? Ah well, when you do get around to washing up outside, here are some tips to help you.

If you haven’t the energy to cover all four sides of your house, give priority to those that face south and west. These receive the most sun and therefore weather most quickly. An exception to this is if you live by the sea. As you’d expect, the side of your house that faces the coast gets dirtiest, with salt deposits speeding up damage.

Pay special attention to any horizontal areas including decorative trims on windows and doors and porch roofs.

Some parts of your home may have exterior walls that are neither brick nor stone. However, all exterior surfaces can take water – they wouldn’t last long with the rain otherwise! So it’s fine to get going with the pressure-washing. However, you need to add detergent to clean UPVC and aluminium surfaces. Look for a pressure-washer that has a compartment for cleaning solutions.

After washing a wooden wall, – and when both the weather and the wall are totally dry – consider giving the wall an extra coat of protective varnish. Choose either ordinary wood protector or one with a stain if you want to go darker or different.

Cleaning roofing is best left to experts and only started if there’s a serious problem requiring maintenance. An exception is any low flat, ground-floor roofing. Mould growth here can substantially shorten the life of your shingle or asphalt surface. So climb up the ladder, and brush it off with a stiff, dry brush.