Importance of Power Washing for Painting Home Exteriors

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Now that winter is drawing to a close and spring is on its way, the chances are that the exterior of your home is looking a little the worse for wear. Strong winds, snow, rain and low temperatures can not only leave dirt and damp marks on your paintwork they can also cause chips, cracks and blistering to your paint.

So if you want to give the house some much needed TLC by cleaning the walls, or you think it’s time for a full repaint, you’ll need to reach for a power washer. This not only lets you blast away dirt and get rid of the chalky deposits left by old paint, it can also remove dirt, mold, mildew and algae too and is much more efficient than trying to do the job with a bucket or water and a handheld brush. It can be fun too, and you can’t say that about many home improvement jobs.

If you’re preparing your exterior walls for a new paint job, this sort of washing is essential. Dirty walls, even if they don’t look particularly grubby, simply won’t hold paint as well as clean walls and can start peeling almost as soon as you’ve completed the job. Any professional will tell you, that when it comes to a successful painting job, preparation is half the work. This is why the Sharper Impressions team will always carry out a power wash, before getting out the paint.

However, maybe you are not looking for a paint job this year. But you should still think about giving your home a power wash. It can get rid of dirt, dust, leaves and cobwebs. Aluminum, steel, vinyl and wood can benefit from being cleaned.

You may wonder if you can just use your garden hose on your walls, but the truth is, this just won’t do the job as effectively. A power hose can be up to 50 times more powerful than a garden hose while using less water. They also have different attachments for different parts of your house, so that water is applied evenly and at the right pressure. A power wash also uses special anti bacterial cleaning agents that help to preserve wooden sidings.  

How a power wash can help

No one really wants to live in a house that looks run down and dirty. If you keep your exterior walls clean, your home seems more inviting. You’ll be giving a lift to the whole neighbourhood too. One or two shabby houses on a street can really affect property prices. Keeping your home looking clean is an investment, as you’re sure to get a better price for a home that’s clearly been looked after if you ever decide to move.

A power wash can also be useful for cleaning out guttering, paths and driveways. A quick blast will get grime out of cracks and ensure your entire property looks clean and attractive.

A power wash can also help to increase the lifespan of your home. Every time there is a buildup of mold, bird droppings, or mildew it can cause damage, discoloration, chalking oxidization and decay. A good power wash, at least every two years, can keep this at bay – perhaps more often if your home is near busy roads or in industrial areas.

How to prepare your house for a power wash.

So you’ve decided that it’s time for a power clean of your house. Here are some hints and tips to getting ready:

  • Check any wood work for rot or damage. This needs repairing before you power wash.
  • Do not power wash if you suspect you have a coat of lead paint (from before 1978) you need to talk to a professional about removing it safely.
  • Choose a clear day with low wind.
  • Turn off the power to any exterior electricity sockets.
  • Cover with plastic any exterior light fittings or delicate decorative features.
  • Move your lawn furniture away from the walls of your house.  
  • Close any doors and windows firmly.
  • Trim any long grass or shrubs that are touching your home, these can cause problems when damp.
  • Use a garden hose to spray your nearby plants and flowers to protect them from the detergents in the power spray.
  • Wear eye protection when spraying.
  • Don’t use a power sprayer when on a ladder, use an extension pole or bring in a professionals.
  • Don’t spray people or animals.

If your home is looking a little dirty after the winter, or you plan to paint, and think it’s time to power wash, get in touch with your local Sharper Impressions team and we’ll be happy to advise you on your next course of action.