Your patio, car and other property are exposed daily to a whole host of different elements; this can lead to a build up dirt, dust, mold and debris. This can completely mask and age the look of your property. This is where pressure washing comes in to restore your surface to its best form!
Power washing is a cleaning method that uses high-pressure mechanical water spray to remove layers of dirt off a variety of surfaces. It offers an easy solution to tough cleaning jobs, such as removing flaking paint or preparing a surface prior to painting. Doing this can ensure that your paint will last longer.
However, most homeowners underestimate the importance of being informed on how to use a pressure washer. If the wrong technique is applied, it can cause significant damage. Don’t make the mistake of likening a power washer to a toy water gun, the level of pressure the machine has could lead to serious harm to a person or property. So never point the machine at pets or other people.
Follow these tips to get the most out of your pressure washer and to get the job done right the first time!
So, how does one operate a power washer safely? Firstly, it is important to protect yourself. We advise whenever operating a power washer, that you wear safety glasses, gloves, and sensible shoes to avoid damage to the skin. Next, it is important to check that both water and electrical outlets are tightly secured at all times. Have a look over the machine to see if there are any obvious damages or cracks. If any cracks are present, the washer will not work properly.
There are a vast array of pressure washers available on the market. Be sure to pick one that is suitable for your needs and the scale of the job you intend to carry out. Every pressure washer is different in its operation. So, we suggest that you read the instructions and safety guidelines very carefully, this may seem time-consuming and is often overlooked by many people. However, failure to adhere to these can lead to damage to yourself and your property.
There are a few tips to bear in mind regardless of which power washer you have.
Be sure to choose the right nozzle. The nozzle you should use will depend on what type of cleaning job you are going to implement. As the nozzles vary with each pressure washer, it would not be possible to say which nozzle suits which surface. What we advise is that you try using the different nozzles on a small area of the surface to see which nozzle best suits. To avoid accidents as you are changing the nozzles, make sure that the nozzle is attached properly before attempting to use the machine.
Once you have decided on a nozzle. Test your pressure washer. You can do this by standing 4 feet away from the target area you hope to clean. Move the wand side to side to check if the area is getting cleaned. You could move closer to apply more pressure. That being said the key thing when operating the machine is to have patience and to use the correct technique. By applying too much pressure and not using a gradual motion, you run the risk of causing a break in the surface.
Now you can apply your detergent of choice, allow it time to soak into the surface for at least 3-5 minutes. This will ensure the soap latches onto the surface and the stain and lifts it out.
Now to use the pressure washer. Technique is crucial at this point. Random spraying will lead to areas left unwashed and streaks. These will be extremely visible once the surface has dried. So to avoid wasting time and an uneven look, spray horizontally from left to right in a slow sweeping motion. Start from the top of the area and work your way down this will minimize the risk of streaks and dripping. It is best to start at the lowest pressure and work your way up, especially when you are trying to clean windows. After cleaning the surface, give it enough time to dry before attempting to paint or apply anything over it.
Power washing can lead to extremely costly damage if done incorrectly. Don’t despair, HNM Painting is on hand to help relieve you of the pressure. Contact us anytime at 843-263-2409 or drop us an e-mail at info[at]hnmpainting.com.