It’s always easier to get the inside of your home looking spotless and well maintained throughout the year. The exterior, however, is a different story (the horror kind, mostly). But it’s one you have to deal with one way or another if you want to keep your home in great shape.
Power washing your home is a tedious but necessary chore. Whether you’re thinking about doing it yourself or looking at having it done by a professional, there are key things that you need to consider before hauling the equipment out or summoning the next handyman available: the timing and the potential risks of a weekend DIY project (that you’d most likely wish you’d never started).
Doing it yourself may sound like the more practical option, but that is not always the case, especially if you don’t have the right equipment on hand, the spare time, or the important know-how when it comes to power washing.
This post will help you identify if your home is due for power washing, the best time of year to schedule such maintenance work, and the things you need to consider if you’re thinking about doing it yourself. Knowing these basics could help you make smart decisions that would save you money and time in the long run.
When Should You Power Wash Your House?
Before we go any further, let’s talk about power washing and pressure washing, which are two different things (surprise!). People often use these terms interchangeably, but if you’re thinking of hosing down your house, you gotta get your definitions right. There's a difference between power washing and pressure washing.
While their functions are similar, with both using highly pressurized water to get rid of dirt, debris, and other unwanted grime, the key difference is the temperature of the water used. A pressure washer relies solely on the powerful stream of water that’s pumped out of the machine. A power washer, on the other hand, uses a combination of high pressure and heated water, which is the better option if you’re targeting tough dirt and mildew build-up, greasy stains, and other stubborn grime that water alone cannot fix.
Now that we’ve got that out of the way, let’s move on to when you should seek the help of a power washer. The dirt building up on the sides of your home, your roof, or even your gutter, is probably your cue to take action, and you may have already started digging through your basement for that power washer you bought three Black Fridays ago. But before you start blasting your house down, it’s important to know whether your timing is right, so you’re able to maximize your time and budget, and avoid injuries, as well as potential damages to your home.
To keep your home spick and span, inside and out, all year round, it’s recommended to have power washing done at least twice a year. This is especially true if you live in a humid area, where mold and mildew grow fast. Scheduling it once in the Spring and another in the Fall is a good interval.
If you already have a high-quality power washer, dependable cleaning products, a day or two to spare, and you consider yourself a pro, DIY-ing can be a good idea. But if you don’t have any experience power washing a house (we promise it’s not the same as washing your own car), and have doubts about whether it’s a task you’d actually be able to finish, we recommend hiring a professional. Power washers project water at extreme force, and if you don’t know how to handle such equipment, you could end up causing damage to your property or other properties nearby; or worse, serious injury to yourself or to others. Other potential risks include electrocution, chemical exposure, and other accidents that may be avoided if you have the proper gear and training.
Don’t want to risk your home or yourself? If you want to know more about professional power washing and what our experts can do for your home, you can request a free custom quote from Excel Residential today.
When the seasons are changing
The best time of year to schedule this maintenance work is in the Spring and in the Fall. Spring is a great time for power washing the exterior of your house, because apart from great weather, by this time, your house has accumulated filth and grime that were brought about by strong winds, snow, and heavy rains during the winter. You don’t want to keep the grime that has accumulated on your exterior surfaces for a long time because it can damage your home and eventually lead to deterioration.
It’s also a good idea to prepare for the winter and power wash your home in the Fall. Leaves will accumulate in your gutters and can be blown into areas of your property that are hard to reach. Plus, when winter kicks in, dust and pollen that have settled on the exterior of your home can freeze and will be even harder to remove once winter is over. Power washing during this time will freshen up the outdoor areas of your home and get it ready for the new season.
Ideally, you’d want to avoid power washing during extreme temperatures. In the summer, for example, extreme heat can cause chemicals used for cleaning to react, affecting the way they work and can sometimes leave weird stains on surfaces. Power washing in the winter is also not the best idea as it can cause water to freeze and leave dangerous ice behind. Equipment also works differently in cold weather, and cleaning and storing them requires an extra bit of care. If you’re not thorough or careful, it can cause damage to the machine, which may be expensive to repair. And then, of course, frost and ice can make the ground slippery, which adds the risk of slipping and falling. It also makes cleaning less effective, in general.
When it’s hard to miss the dirt
If it’s impossible to miss the dirt and debris but you can no longer tell where your roof is, you may need to power wash your house, like, now. Depending on how dirty the exterior of your house is, you may not be able to afford to wait for the season to turn. If your gutters are clogged, your roof is discolored or covered in thick layers of algae, your driveway is stained and moldy, or if the outside of your home has just become altogether unsightly, you need to act, ASAP. Not only does it turn neighbors and guests off, it can also cause higher energy bills as accumulated dirt and grime makes it difficult to heat or cool the house efficiently. Gutters, if left clogged for too long, can potentially cause water damage to your house’s foundation; and algae can start to eat away at your house’s surface causing costly damage.
After a major storm
Major storms bring with them strong winds and dirty floodwater, which leave behind an unreasonable amount of mud and filth and bacteria. This is why such disasters call for a power washing session as soon as it’s safe to be out and about.
It’s not unlikely for your property to have sustained damage, and having the exterior of your home cleaned and hosed down makes it easier to spot them so you can immediately get repairs done before the damage gets worse. Your walls, the ground, and other surfaces may also now be home to disease-causing bacteria, so deep cleaning is essential.
Before kicking off home improvement projects
Cleaning is one of the first steps (that should not be skipped!) in home renovations, and if the exterior of your house is part of your home improvement project, power washing is it. Starting any major makeover or repaint work with dirty surfaces can cause problems down the road. Power washing can take off old, peeling layers of paint and other products, allowing for more efficient renovations.
Timing Your Power Wash is Key
Knowing the perfect time for power washing your house is important because it tells you when the cleaning can be done most efficiently and when it makes the most sense, giving you a lot more bang for your buck. You wouldn’t want to schedule it during seasons when there’s a higher risk of injury and damage to your home and equipment, for example, which could rack up expenses in the end. Being armed with the right information helps you save money, time, and resources.
Power washing your house yourself may seem like a tempting idea, especially if you have a tight budget. But if you don’t do it right, you may end up spending even more. If you need more advice on how to power wash your home, or if you want to know how much you can save by hiring a professional, request a free customized quote today一Excel Residential will be happy to help.