Your home's exterior is exposed to the elements, and dirt and grime will build up on brick, siding, and concrete. Fortunately, many outdoor power tool retailers offer pressure-washing equipment. Before you start spraying, here are some tips to ensure you don't accidentally damage your belongings.
How to Correctly Pressure-Wash Your Home
1. Choose the Right Equipment
Pressure-washers come in various sizes, PSI (pounds of pressure per square inch), and GPM (gallons of water per minute). Most pressure-washers come in consumer- or professional-grade models and are gas- or electric-powered.
For standard home cleaning, a consumer model will be sufficient. Professional-grade equipment might be more powerful, but it also requires more caution.
Most consumer models are available in 1.0 to 4.0 GPM or 500 to 4,000 PSI. A model with a higher GPM is more potent than a unit with a high PSI.
2. Keep Safety In Mind
These outdoor power tools produce high-pressure water blasts that can injure users and property if not handled with care. Wear eye and ear protection, gloves, boots, and a long-sleeve shirt to prevent cuts caused by powerful streams.
Keep pets and children indoors and out of the line of spray. Move outdoor furniture and yard art away from the areas you'll be cleaning. Some pressure-washing equipment can strip paint and cut through lightweight materials such as softwood, so keep a distance of at least six feet from surfaces to soften the stream.
3. Use the Correct Nozzles
Nozzles determine the spray's direction and angle, which can also affect its intensity. There are five types of color-labeled nozzles included with most machines.
Red nozzles produce the narrowest and most powerful stream and should never be used up-close. Yellow nozzles produce 15-degree angled streams that are ideal for cleaning concrete. Green nozzles create a 25-degree spray that’s recommended for all-purpose cleaning, such as car washing or patio furniture cleaning.
White nozzles produce a 40-degree spray that’s safe to use on windows and siding. With a 65-degree stream, black nozzles are the most gentle and are only recommended if you need to wet an area.
If your home's exterior needs a thorough cleaning, you'll find a large selection of pressure-washing equipment at L & R Power Equipment Inc. in Monroe, CT. As specialists in outdoor power tools, they carry top brands and are an authorized Stihl® retailer. Their friendly staff helps homeowners throughout Trumble, East End, Monroe, Shelton, and Fairfield select the right equipment for their projects. Call (203) 268-8400 to speak to a staff member, or visit them online to learn more about their products.