You need to have a pressure washer that has 3500 to 4000 PSI and 50 feet of pressure washing hose. A long wand attached to the end of the pressure washing gun is helpful, and an assortment of tips. A 5 gallon bucket, eye goggles to protect your eyes and a safety hat are also recommended.
How do you soft wash a house?
The difference between pressure washing a house and doing a “soft wash” is that when pressure washing you will use pressure up close on the siding or surfaces that are being cleaned. Soft washing a house on the other hand, is a gentle rinsing procedure that uses low pressure on the surfaces.
When pressure washing the house, the high pressure of the water close to the surface may force water up underneath siding or through windows or doors. Soft washing helps eliminate the concerns about excessive water pressure getting into the house.
Pressure washing the house is usually done on ladders. Soft washing the house is done from the ground and does not require ladders. When soft washing the house we only use two tips. One is a wide bleaching tip that has a fan width of 4 to 5 feet and also a bleaching tip that produces a stream that reaches about 30 feet high. When you add an extension pole to the end of the pressure washing gun and also the height of the person doing the pressure washing you gently can reach a 40 foot height relatively easily. Also if you pull and release the trigger quickly you can shoot the stream another five or 10 feet higher.
How do I prepare my house for pressure washing?
The first thing to do is remove porch furniture or cover the furniture with plastic to protect it from bleach. Next, remove potted flowers away from the house. Then release all the screen clips from the inside of the house and remove the screens. It’s a good idea to pencil the numbers of the screens, counting from left to right on the front, and counting left to right on the right side, back and left side of the house this enables you to place the screens back on the appropriate windows. If you have a front door that is a stained door it is a good idea to cover it and tape it with blue tape and plastic so that no bleach and water get on the surface. All other doors of the house should be taped at the door jamb and at the sill . If the varnish is sound it generally will not affect the door, but if it’s weathered the bleach will lighten the wood in these weathered areas.
It’s usually good to wash one side of the house at a time. The bleach acts very quickly, usually 10 minutes or less. The first step is to use the pressure washer with the large bleaching tip to rinse the shrubbery it is near the house. The next up is to begin the bleach running through the injector of the pressure washer and start at the bottom and begin to bleach the house with this large pressure washing tip. Work your way up to the house to the overhangs. Allow the bleach to run out of the line and clear water starts to flow and begin the rinsing process. Start at the top and flood the surface from the overhangs all away down with clear water. When you’re finished rinsing the whole side go back one more time and do just the windows with a final rinse. The final step is to rinse the shrubbery a last time with clear water. Proceed to the next side of the house and repeat the process.
If you have a deck that is stained you need to rinse the whole deck with bleach and water so that it cleans evenly. Then rinse the whole deck with clear water.
Again this is all soft wash process and no significant pressure has been used on the house.
There are surfaces that sometimes need to have some pressure in order to remove dirt or chalky paint. Be careful when using pressure around the doors and the windows so the water is not forced into the house.
For more information or answers to your painting questions, please contact us.