Pressure Washing vs. Soft Washing

Pressure Washing vs. Soft Washing: Most people don’t know that ProClean doesn’t just use pressure washing to clean your home. In fact, if you ask us to pressure wash certain things, we may just say no (politely of course!) This is because we care about your home and know that, while some surfaces can handle a powerful wash, others can’t and need a gentler method instead. Here’s why.

Pressure Washing vs. Soft Washing: What’s The Difference?

Pressure washing is a term our customers are familiar with, but soft washing… not so much. Wait, pressure washing is just…pressure washing, right? This is a common misconception. There’s pressure washing and then there’s soft washing; the difference lies in how fast and strong the machine is pushing out the water.

Pressure washing uses high water pressure (4000 psi) and only surfaces like concrete, brick, and stone can handle it. Soft washing, on the other hand, uses low water pressure and is often done in conjunction with a biodegradable chemical that gently washes away mold, dirt, pollen, stains, etc. (Soft washing runoff is even safe for your grass and plants!)

Any painted surface or item made from a less durable material needs to be cleaned using soft washing. Getting things clean is great, but not at the expense of damaging your home. “Not only does the soft washing method clean surfaces, such as you [sic] roof, deck, patio, siding or fence, safely and thoroughly, it also maintains paint and masonry longer.” (

Surfaces That Should NEVER Be Pressure Washed

Now that you understand the distinction between pressure washing and soft washing, you can see how certain things may not be able to handle a powerful pressure wash. There are certain things you should never pressure wash because it could damage them, including:

  • Vehicles
  • Light fixtures
  • Wood panels
  • Electrical fixtures
  • Vinyl siding
  • Screens
  • Stucco
  • Asphalt shingles

If you want to avoid costly damage, know the difference between pressure washing and soft washing (and make sure you hire a professional who knows the difference too!)