Pressure washing is a process in which a stream of high-pressure water and detergent is sprayed on surfaces that have stubborn dirt and stains. Think of a concrete driveway that’s become gray with tire marks or a brick wall that’s developed a greenish-black hue from moss and mold. A freshly pressure-washed house looks brighter and newer, and a pressure-washed car may look spotless. But if you simply rent a pressure-washing machine and have it at it, you could damage your property and injure yourself. Consider a few issues first before attempting pressure washing, and also consider whether hiring a professional company is a better choice.
How Much Pressure Do You Really Need?
High-pressure washing can knock dirt right off paint, but too much pressure can knock the paint off along with the dirt, which would make the surface look worse. If you’re attempting to do the job yourself, you must find out how much pressure you’ll need for each application. If you were just hoping to get rid of some dirt, it may be better for you to contact a professional power-washing company, whose staff will know which applications need which amount of pressure.
What’s In, Near, or Around the Pressure Washing Area?
While pressure washers are pretty good at directing the spray out of the nozzle, the water in it can still splatter and splash around. Because this water usually contains a detergent, you have to be aware of what that water could come into contact with. For example, if you’re trying to pressure wash the side of a house, that detergent-water mix will likely hit some nearby plants. This could hurt the plants if the detergent is something that’s too strong for them. Plus, if you misdirect the nozzle, the high-pressure spray could hit plants and actually break branches and remove leaves.
You have to figure out how to protect what’s around the area being washed, or, you could have a pressure-washing company do the work because they’ll know exactly how to protect landscaping, window glass, and anything else around the area.
What Size Nozzle Will You Need?
Did you know there are different types of pressure-washer nozzles? Some are narrow and rotate, while others are wider and adjustable. Each works well in different situations, but if you get the wrong type of nozzle, the pressure washing can become tedious and take much longer than you anticipated. A professional pressure washing company will be able to choose the right nozzle easily.
Do You Have the Right Safety Gear?
The spray that comes out of a pressure washer has enough force to split things like fruit, so you can imagine what it could do to your skin. The spray can also force dirt to fly, and you don’t want it getting in your eyes. You must wear closed-toed shoes, gloves, and preferably goggles when using a pressure washer. If you don’t have these items, or you’re not willing to wear them, then have someone else do the pressure washing.