You may have taken a stroll around the outside of your home and noticed some unsightly blemishes on your surfaces. Whether algae and lichen have begun to grow on your roof or the decaying leaves in your gutters have left dark streaks down your siding, it may be time to invest in some exterior cleaning to revitalize the outside surfaces of your home.
However, using a washer offers more benefits than just cleanliness—as long as it is done right. That means that you will need to decide between pressure washing your exterior surfaces and opting for a soft wash. To make this decision, be sure to understand the different benefits that each one has to offer and how they are different from one another.
The Pressure vs. Soft Wash Decision
Pressure washing and soft washing are not the same thing, though they are similar in many ways. Both are a type of surface cleaning that relies on a jet of water to blast away unwanted materials and stains from outdoor surfaces. Both can effectively clean; despite the name “soft wash,” this type of project is not necessarily gentle. However, deciding which option is right for you comes down to a combination of what is important to you, what type of surfaces you are working with and why they need to be cleaned.
One of the main differences between pressure washing and soft washing is the PSI, or pounds per square inch, that the water jet uses. A pressure washer will output somewhere around 1300 PSI on average, which makes it a powerful tool for blasting away stubborn grime and really getting into surfaces for a deep clean.
However, this can also mean that DIYers may damage their exterior surfaces with this powerful jet of water if they are inexperienced. Soft washing, on the other hand, uses about 500 PSI or less. While this keeps many surfaces safer and can tackle a wide range of cleaning tasks, not all projects may work well with low pressure. However, soft washing is safer not only for surfaces but for people too.
How The Use Of Detergents Factors In
Another difference between soft washing and pressure washing is the use of detergents. One of the staple features of soft washing is that because the force of the water jet is lower, one of the reasons that it still cleans well is because it uses chemicals and cleaners to break down the grime before blasting it away.
Some projects, especially those handling living organisms like algae, benefit most from soft washing due to the cleaning agents. However, you may be worried about the environmental impacts of using detergents like bleach, and the lower pressure may not get every job done on every surface.
When Pressure Washing Is Right For You
Pressure washing is one of the most standard types of exterior cleaning, which means that it can handle a wide variety of tasks with ease. As far as accessibility, you can find your own pressure washers to rent fairly easily; just be aware that the powerful jet of water can damage your exterior surfaces if you are not fully educated on how to use the machine.
When A Soft Wash Is A Better Option
Soft washing is certainly gentler than pressure washing in terms of PSI, but overall, it often provides a more effective and long-lasting clean. For living organisms like algae, the detergents will actually kill the unwanted elements rather than just blasting them off of a surface. Antibacterials and other helpful agents are often present in soft washing detergent.
However, if you are concerned about the environmental impact of the chemicals you are using, ask your soft washing company about the option to choose environmentally friendly options instead. You will be harder pressed to find a soft wash machine and detergent for rent, which means this type of task is often best left to the pros; however, because the results generally last longer, this may be an investment worth making.
Trust The Experts To Wash Your Exterior Surfaces Correctly, Quickly And Comprehensively
Whether you are just beginning to consider pressure washing for your home’s dirty exterior surfaces or you have given the task a try with a rental and aren’t getting the results that you hoped for, it is typically best to leave this type of work to the pros.
Damaging your surfaces is a real possibility with pressure washing; the experts at Waterproof Caulking & Restoration would be happy to help you tackle this project correctly, without compromising your siding, roof and other surfaces. Reach out to schedule an appointment for washing or to learn more about which type of washing is right for your situation.