Accumulated dirt, grime, and mildew can sneak up on even the most neat and tidy homeowners, leaving many wondering, “What happened to my beautiful house?” Pressure washing, along with a scrub and chemical rinse when necessary, can give your exterior that much-needed facelift.

When Should You Pressure Wash?

Environmental wear can speed up the decay of your outdoor structures, forcing untimely and costly repairs or replacements. To protect your home and investments, consider hiring a professional pressure washer or renting a pressure washing machine to remove:

  • Dirt and gunk
  • Mildew, mold, and algae buildup
  • Grease and oil stains
  • Rust deposits

Pressure washing can renew your exterior with a fresh, clean appearance, but it is also useful when:

  • Slippery and dangerous mildew poses a hazard.

  • Preparing to sell your home. A quality pressure washing job can take years off your home’s appearance, which will help make that crucial first impression to buyers a positive one.

  • Preparing to refinish, stain, or seal wood structures, such as fences, decks, and siding.

  • It’s time to repaint your exterior.

  • Preparing outdoor areas for family fun and entertaining during the spring and summer.

Where Is Pressure Washing Needed?

Pressure washing is an essential maintenance task for certain outdoor structures, but on many places, it will simply help brighten up your exterior. The following list covers some of the most common items in need of periodic pressure washing:

  • Siding
  • Brickwork
  • Masonry structures
  • Driveways
  • Porches and decks
  • Patios and terraces
  • Sidewalks and walkways
  • Fences
  • Playground equipment
  • Outdoor furniture
  • Pools
  • Garage doors and floors

Many people with their own pressure washing machine or one rented for the day find themselves spraying down difficult-to-clean messes, such as caked-on grass stuck to the bottom of a lawn mower or mildew buildup on pool floats and toys.

Why Use a Professional?

Pressure washing machines use interchangeable tips that vary the intensity and width of the spray. An inexperienced operator is more likely to apply the wrong amount of pressure or spray too closely to a structure. Lack of knowledge can be costly—water can be forced underneath siding, paint jobs can be damaged, and other surfaces are susceptible to ruin as well. A quality pressure washing professional can protect your exterior structures as well as any plants or landscaping that could get damaged when chemical rinses are used. Finally, according to the Power Washers of North America (PWNA), professionals may also have the proper equipment to reclaim and recycle water, which is an essential practice in areas with water bans or where storm runoff should be managed.

Whether it’s necessary for routine maintenance or your exterior just needs a little care, pressure washing can be a great way to extend the life of outdoor features and keep your exterior looking its best. With pressure washing machines commonly available for purchase or to rent, many projects can be knocked out in an afternoon. However, consider hiring an experienced and knowledgeable professional who can properly clean and protect your home.

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Sources: Interlocking Concrete Pavement Institute; Stonescaping Made Simple.

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