Pressure Washing Your Home’s Exterior
Pressure washing is a great way to get your home’s exterior looking brand new. This heavy duty home staple blasts away dirt and grime making walls and stone patios as good as new. They’re also great for prepping your home for a fresh coat of paint, allowing you to quickly clean and remove an old layer.
One the other hand, pressure washing can go south very quickly, and can cause unwanted damage to your home’s exterior if used improperly. Pressure washing is a common practice for Ottawa homes, but mistakes can happen. There’s nothing worse than just wanting to scrape off some mold or dirt and accidentally taking your home’s new paint job with it.
Pressure washers are a heavy duty tool, and like any other heavy duty tool, it’s important to know what it’s capable of and how to use it properly. Pressure washing your home’s exterior is a lot more intricate than just pointing the nozzle, and pulling the trigger.
Most damage occurs when the home’s exterior is not prepped for an intense bout of pressure washing. Starting off, keep all windows firmly shut, and never point the stream at the glass. Next, make sure there is no pre-existing damage to any gutters or siding. Pre-existing damage becomes much more difficult to fix after a pressure washer has become involved.
Different Pressure, Different Results
There are many different models of pressure washer, ranging from light to heavy duty usage. Each machine will have a different PSI (pounds per square inch) range, making them suitable for certain applications. The biggest mistake homeowners make is using the wrong pressure setting. The higher the PSI, the more pressure is added to the stream, giving it more power. Day-to-day exterior cleaning only needs about 1,500 PSI, so most damage occurs when homeowners unknowingly use an unnecessarily high setting.
Choosing The Right Nozzle
Nozzles have an important effect on pressure, creating different streams which control how the pressurized water contacts the exterior of your home. Each colour of nozzle indicates how broad or narrow the stream of water is when ejecting from the washer. The narrower the stream, the more concentrated the pressure. Always start with a broader, less concentrated stream to get a better understanding of what effect each stream will have on your home’s exterior.
It’s All In The Technique
What task you’re attempting to accomplish will determine how to hold your pressure washer, and how far away you should be (the closer you are, the more concentrated the pressure). Always practice on small portions before taking on the whole project. Work top to bottom, and if you want to move a little closer, remember to reduce the pressure!
Pressure washing your Ottawa home’s exterior can make it look new and refreshed, but using a pressure washer improperly can do just the opposite. Follow the above guidelines and you can keep your home looking like new without having to worry about damage.