There are a lot of reasons to want to clean the outside of a home. For those who live where wildfires or forest fires are common, the smoke damage may be one of them. In areas with a lot of rain and high humidity, mold is a common problem. The grime on the outside of a house can make those who live in it ill.
What is a home owner to do? A water hose, even with a pressure nozzle on it, can only do so much. On some things, it can’t do anything. A higher tech answer is needed. If the homeowner googles it, they will learn about power washers and pressure washers. What are they, how do they work and are they the answer?
Of these two options, the pressure washer is the simplest. It gets attached to a hose and the tank builds up pressure. When the spray comes out the PSI (pounds per square inch) is really high. In theory, it will rid the surfaces it touches of a great deal of grime. However, the water is cold.
A power washer is similar, except that the water in the tank is heated. Hot water gets rid of a lot more grime than cold water. There are two problems with this scenario. The first is that both of these units are dangerous in untrained hands. Keep in mind that dentists use smaller versions on teeth. If it can cut a tooth in a small form, what could it do in larger volumes?
The other problem was once addressed in a Facebook post. At the beginning of the flu season a few years ago a teacher brought in some sliced bread for her classroom. It wasn’t for a snack but for an experiment.
All of the children placed their unwashed hands on one piece. They used cold water on their hands for the next piece. For the rest of the slices, they tried hot water, hand sanitizer and finally soap and water. Each piece was placed in a Ziploc bag and hung on a bulletin board.
The only one to be mold free at the end of two weeks was the one touched by washed hands. Granting, that says something scary about the bread, too, but it makes one point clear. Soap is needed, especially where mold spores might be hiding.
This is true when cleaning anything… including exterior walls, walkways and fences. This brings up an option that might not seem available when one first looks for a method of cleaning a home’s exterior. It is called soft washing.
A soft washer uses less PSI than either of the above methods. It is still in a pressure washer, but with less than five hundred PSI. This is safer to handle and removes the things that water alone can’t. It is possible to choose environmentally friendly detergent, which makes it safer for everyone.
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