Pressure Washing - Do's and Don'ts
A power washer is a versatile machine that can help restore sparkle and shine to a variety of surfaces around your home. Pressure washing is a satisfying task to tackle but can cause more harm than good if misused. If for any reason you find yourself worried that you may be doing more harm than good, don’t hesitate to call on professionals like those at Clean & Seal Pro in San Ramon, California. Otherwise, to speed you through your cleaning chores without damaging any surfaces, heed these best and worst practices for pressure-washing.
Pressure Washing “Do’s”
Test the Water Flow
Test the water flow of the hose by timing how long it takes to fill a five-gallon bucket. If it takes two minutes or less, you’re good to go. Longer than that indicates that there's not enough water flow to operate the pressure washer and you might be wasting your time.
Different Nozzle Tip For Every Job
There are a variety of nozzle tips available depending on the job. The more narrow the spray, the more force it delivers. A wide, 40-degree nozzle works well for general washing, and a 25-degree nozzle tip will tackle dirt and grime on concrete and other types of masonry. Zero- or 15-degree nozzle tips concentrate intense pressure on a small area, making them most useful for removing stubborn stains from iron.
Ease Into the Job
A blast that is too direct can damage even those surface you’d expect to hold up well to pressure washing. For best results, position yourself 10 feet away from the surface you’re cleaning, turn on the water, then step forward until the spray is just forceful enough to remove dirt. Work from the top to the bottom of a surface so that grime doesn’t stain a clear section and direct the water downward.
Call A Professional Pressure Washing Service
If you feel like you are out of your depth and are worried you may cause damage - which is very likely when dealing with a pressure washer - call a professional like those at Clean & Seal Pro in San Ramon, California. Don’t hesitate as the damage that you can do with a pressure washer can be extensive and expensive to repair.
Pressure Washing “Don’ts”
Don’t Underestimate Its Power
A pressure washer’s biggest strengths - speed and power - make this tool as dangerous as it is efficient. The water stream from even those models with psi’s on the lower side is forceful enough to cut through human skin. Save yourself and your property from harm by putting on safety goggles, starting on low pressure, and gripping the wand tightly to avoid recoil.
Use It For Everything
Even with extreme care and lowest pressure, not all items are suitable for pressure-washing if they already show signs of wear and tear. For example, most automobile paint jobs can withstand strong spray but should be cleaned using lower water pressure. Some items you should not pressure wash are wood sidings, electrical panels, asphalt shingles, old mortar, old paint, windows, and stained wood. High-pressure water can cause damage to insulation, electrical wiring, and will ruin any wood stain or loose material. Surfaces like brick, concrete pavers, cut stone, stucco are some surfaces that are okay to powerwash; however, don’t hold the nozzle too close to the surface or for too long in one spot.
Use It Indoors
For obvious reasons, a power wash clean is intended for outside surfaces only. Pressure washers are very powerful machines and need to be operated in a safe manner. To be effectively safe, you should wear proper face, eye and protective safety gear for the job you are performing. It is also important to read the operation manual thoroughly to ensure safe operation of your pressure washer.
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