Updated: Apr 19, 2021
1 – USING WAY TOO MUCH PRESSURE
This is definitely the most common pressure washing mistake. It is also one of the most damaging. I understand you wanna get some dirt off the side of your house, but there is no need to stand literally 0.3 centimeters away while blasting water at a little smudge. When you stand too close you can cause your wood to furr, leave etching in your concrete, strip paint, and even crack glass. The fix? You won’t believe this one… all you gotta do is just stand farther away.
2 – USING ONLY WATER
Another classic rookie mistake I see homeowners make is not using a chemical aide to help the pressure washing process. By only using water you end up with a bunch of issues. First, you will find that it makes cleaning some areas way more difficult and annoying than it should be. Using just cold water you are trying to break through the barrier of dirt and get the entire surface clean at the same time. A lot of the times this doesn’t work, causing people to just blast the surface with more pressure. That’s not even the worst part. If you only use water, and are spraying an area that has mold, all this will do is spread mold spores around that will continue to grow once everything is done drying. Without a chemical aide, you will not be attacking the main source of your issue. Using a chemical in the pressure washing process is almost always necessary. In your cleaning process, you should start by coating the area to be cleaned with a high quality environmentally friendly washing aide. This helps to break the barrier of mold or dirt so when you start pressure washing, you will get the entire surface clean.
3 – WASHING WATER SENSITIVE AREAS
Common sense would tell you to not pressure wash sensitive areas of your home. But as we all know sometimes common sense just isn’t common. Here are some areas you should do your best to avoid on your next pressure washing job.
Non watertight windows: Sometimes you go and do a great job cleaning your window frame. From the outside it looks beautiful, crisp, and clean! Then you step inside and realize you’ve just soaked the inside of your bedroom. Not good. Windows tend to have these little gaps. Itty bitty holes that allow just enough water to get through. Be sure to completely seal your windows before you start pressure washing.
Door Openings: When you get out there and start cleaning your door, it can be easy to forget that there is still a small gap at the bottom when closed. Just like with the windows, often times you will finish your job, walk in through your front door only to realize that the floors are all wet and now you have another mess to clean. It is recommended to make sure your door is completely sealed before cleaning.
Drywall ceilings on covered patios: This one can be really costly. You may be thinking you are doing something great by moving all your furniture off your back covered patio and cleaning the ceiling, but what you end up with is a cracking and sagging ceiling. The reason is sometimes builders don’t pay close enough attention to the drywall that is being installed and they will install indoor drywall outside. The tape and drywall are completely different for an outside application. People don’t notice this and pressure wash their patio anyways, causing massive damage. The key here is to know what kind of ceiling it is so you don’t make a costly mistake.
4 – CLEANING OUT OF ORDER
Making this mistake isn’t really as bad as the others. But I promise you that pressure washing out of order is gonna make things take a whole lot longer. Think about it. If you start out with your driveway and sidewalk, then pressure wash your house or your roof, you will have some residual rinsing to do on your driveway. All of the dirt you clean off your house and roof will land on the ground. Another example would be you cleaning your windows first, then your roof. All the muck from your roof will get all over your freshly cleaned windows. Pressure wash in this order and save yourself some time.
Any flat surfaces