Power washing your home in MI is a great way to improve its curb appeal and remove years of dirt and grime built up over the years. Because of the wide variety of weather in MI, your home can take a beating, whether by snow or salt power washing is an instant way to make it look as good as new.
One of the most frequent questions we get from homeowners is if power washing their home will damage it. The answer to this is it depends. Vinyl siding is pliable and can typically withstand power washing if done correctly. Consumer power washers can easily reach pressure levels up to 3,000 psi, and for commercial units reaching upwards of 4,000 psi, you can easily damage the siding if not done correctly.
If you’re considering power washing your harm, we strongly recommend having a professional do it. There are a few reasons for this, the main one being they are appropriately trained so you don’t have to worry about making mistakes that can damage your home.
The short answer is yes. There is extreme pressure involved, and it can easily damage your home if you’re not adequately prepared. Some of the damage that may occur is:
- Stripped paint – If your aim is to remove your paint, then pressure washing is a great way to do it. However, if this is not your intention, make sure you stand far enough back, hold the wand at an angle, and set the pressure correctly. If you have any doubts, you can call in a professional to prevent unnecessary damage.
- Shredded window screens can occur from aiming the wand directly at the window. Screens are not meant to withstand the high pressure that power washers emit.
- Loose and dented vinyl siding can occur if the power washer wand is aimed directly at the siding because it increases the amount of pressure on your home. Professional contractors know to aim the wand at an angle to prevent this.
- Damaged seals on windows, resulting in clouding and water damage – if the power washer isn’t held correctly or too much pressure is used, the seals can easily occur and need replacing.
- Algae, mold, and mildew growth from the build-up of water under the siding – If the power washer is used on too high of a setting, it can cause cracks or holes in the siding. If this occurs, rain can seep into these holes, increasing the risk of mold or mildew growth.
Along with the potential damage that can occur, you can also damage your landscaping and even yourself. In fact, thousands of injuries and even deaths are caused by power washing each year.
Most often, these come from incorrect usage of ladders. Attempting to control the power washer wand while on a ladder can cause untrained individuals to quickly lose their balance and fall. Don’t let a simple home beautification project lead to hundreds of dollars worth of damage to your home, property, or personal injury. For additional information, visit our site about power washing.
- It increases your home’s value and curb appeal – If you’re thinking of selling your home, a clean house can add up to $15,000 to the sale price. Additionally, when prospective buyers look at homes, ones that appear well taken care of are more appealing than dingy and stained ones.
- It removes harmful contaminants that you use throughout the year, such as weed killer or pest repellants.
- It removes airborne contaminants such as mold spores that lead to respiratory illnesses or asthma-like symptoms.
- Michigan winters are harsh and can damage and stain the outside of your home if not cleaned off. If you allow the stains to set for a long time, it can permanently damage your house. Mold and mildew can also quickly spread, and the spores may get under your siding and spread into your home.
- It’s environmentally friendly – Professionals use solutions that are non-toxic and safe for your family and pets. They know pressure washing techniques that won’t damage your grass, plants, or shrubs around your home. Our environmentally friendly solutions are touch enough to remove all mold, mildew, dirt, and debris while still biodegradable.
You can keep your vinyl siding clean between professional power washing by using the three steps below.
Of course, you could buy cleaner from the store, many containing harmful chemicals. However, making your own is much less expensive and is not harmful to your home or landscaping. In order to make your cleaner, all you need is dawn dish soap, a bucket of warm water, and a large sponge. You can also use vinegar if you prefer it over soap or don’t want to worry about rinsing.
Apply the cleaning solution with a soft-bristled cleaning brush scrubbing the entire length of the lap. Start at the bottom and use your garden hose to rinse off each section before it dries.
Clean tough stains with vinegar and baking soda mixed with water, or you can also use soft scrub or other cleaners. For spots such as paint drips, tar, or pencil marks, you may have to use a non-abrasive cleaner or nylon scrub pad. To remove mold and mildew stains, you can use vinegar, or if you prefer, you can use an ammonia-based cleaner. Once you wash the siding, then rinse thoroughly.
There is no set schedule on how often you should have your vinyl siding cleaned. However, a good rule of thumb is to have it done every two to three years. It’s not a good idea to go over three years without having your home in MI professionally power washed because not only does it clean your home, it also clears away in insect nests or termite tunnels. Like any other type of maintenance on your home, you’ll want to adjust the schedule to best fit your needs.