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While pressure washers are an easy and fast way to clean any exterior surface of your home, if not used properly, they can actually damage the surface and cause more harm than good. Since a lot of people have never used a pressure washer and aren’t familiar with the way it functions, we’ll go over a few of the essential steps you should follow when pressure washing your home.

Pressure washers can be used to clean any exterior surface, starting from your driveway, shed and patio to your home’s exterior walls and so on. Pressure washing can be used to not only refresh and clean exterior surfaces, but it can also help you prepare them for painting. Pressure washing is a quick and easy way to get rid of stains, streaks, mildew and all kinds of dirt and grime from almost any surface. This can help you improve the look of your home or business, boost your home’s curb appeal, and promote better health by getting rid of potentially harmful substances such as dust, pollen, pollutants, algae, mildew and more.

In order to get the most out of this cleaning method, here are some of the best practices you’ll need to follow as well as those you need to avoid.

DON’T Use Your Pressure Washer on All Surfaces

It’s really important that you know what kind of surface material you’re dealing with before you start pressure washing it. The type of material will determine the way you pressure wash, the amount of pressure you use and the type of tip you choose.

Note that not all surfaces are safe for pressure washing, so in order to avoid any damages, here are some of the surfaces which are DEFINITELY not suitable for pressure washing:

  • Cars

  • Lead paint

  • Wooden furniture

  • Old mortar

  • Asphalt shingles and

  • Plants

DO Inspect the Area First

Once you determine which surfaces are safe to pressure wash and which you need to avoid, you can go onto inspecting all the areas you’re planning on cleaning and take care of any weeds, vines and shrubbery that might have overgrown and covered them. Clip or pull away any bushes and greens that are in your way so you can have a nice and clean space to work on, and start prepping your pressure washer.

DON’T Skip Prep

Before you start cleaning, you’ll need to make sure you have all the supplies and materials you need to finish your project successfully. You’ll need to test the water flow from your hose to see if you have enough water pressure to run the pressure washer. 

Your next step would be to connect everything properly. Attach one end of the high-powered hose into the pressure washer, and the other end into the spray gun. Then use your garden hose to connect it to the second hose nozzle. Last but not least, prepare your cleaning solution if you’re planning on using any and set the small clear hose that’s connected to your pressure washer inside the bucket containing your solution. Select and connect the right tip to the end of your spray gun, depending on the purpose you’re using it for as well as the surface you’re working with. If you’re not sure which tip to choose, try each of them on a small surface of your home to see how they work.

Once your pressure washer is prepped and properly connected, all you need to do is grab some safety goggles and a pair of clothes you don’t mind getting wet and dirty, so you can start pressure washing your house and have it look like new in no time.

DON’T Run Out Of Gas

If you’re working with a heavy-duty gas-powered pressure washer, the most important thing to keep an eye out for is to not run out of gas. This can cause vapour lock, which can lead to loss of fuel pressure, loss of power and difficulties starting the engine. You want to make sure you have enough gas before you start the pressure washer, so you don’t have to refuel halfway through while the machine is hot.

DO Protect Sensitive Areas

While you’re inspecting your home, look for areas where water can get in and cause damage. Protect those areas by covering them with duct tape or wrapping them up in plastic. These include any exterior outlets, lights, and so on.

While you won’t need to cover any window casings, door edges and caulking areas, you will need to make sure to avoid them, so you don’t get water inside your home and cause leaks.

As long as you follow these few simple steps and guidelines, you’ll be able to transform any grimy, neglected area and make it look stunning and inviting again.