Vinyl siding is by far one of the most popular choices for home exterior cladding decor on the market, the low cost, style and durability are unmatched. Maintenance of your vinyl siding can be cumbersome if you’ve never had it and you may have many questions, but it’s actually quite easy. You can do it with a little time and effort, whether you do your vinyl siding cleaning by hand or with a power washer, there are some best practices to keep in mind as suggested by the best vinyl siding manufacturers. After reading some frequently asked questions, here are some tips to help make you an ace at cleaning and maintaining your house’s vinyl siding for years to come!
With or Without Pressure Washing?
Typically homeowners think cleaning vinyl siding needs to be done with a power washer or high pressure spray washer before thinking about the simple steps of doing it by hand with a soft bristle brush and their garden hose and the impeccable results that follow. Pressure washing isn’t the best thing for you or your siding, because of the significant risk of damage that an inexperienced hand can cause. Maintaining your siding with years of trouble free protection for your home, can be done easily with these steps.
First things first, though you’ll need to find a cleaning solution capable of handling the dirt, grime, mildew, pollen, rust and spiderwebs that accumulate on your siding. Also depending on the siding, they’re prone to discoloration effects of herbicides, insecticides and fertilizers that all leave your vinyl siding looking less than its best. Even driveway sealant, motor oil, tar, paint, and extra caulking get on there marring the good looks of new or well maintained vinyl siding.
Mix It Up!
Mixing a simple combination of 70% water and 30% white vinegar makes a great, natural all-purpose vinyl siding cleaner that will remove light mildew and mold stains. For a stronger cleanser, mix together one-third cup of powdered laundry detergent, two-thirds of a cup of powdered household cleaner, one quart of liquid laundry bleach with one gallon of water. If that doesn’t work, household cleaners like: Clorox, Fantastik, Murphy’s Oil Soap, Windex and Lysol can be used to remove tough stains. Those stains are often caused by topsoil, grease, grass, oil, rust, crayons and ink and these solutions work better but can damage landscaping. Non-toxic biodegradable concentrate cleaners like the brand Simple Green can be used in this context and also in pressure washers. Brands like Simple Green and others are specially formulated to work on vinyl siding, aluminum, stucco and painted wood applications without affecting the warranty on your exterior cladding. General purpose cleaners and grease removers can work better on your siding than others but regular dish soap and warm water often has the same effect on cleaning vinyl siding. Starting from the bottom and working to the top of the house to prevent streaking is a best practice and using a soft cloth and long handled, soft bristled brush while rinsing it as you go is best.
Siding Washing Pro-Tips
Pressure washing your vinyl siding seems like it would be a faster and easier DIY job than by hand with a soft bristle brush. But this way comes with a lot of risk because if you don’t use the sprayer the right way, you can force water up under the siding and it can cause mildew or even, depending on the amount of pressure applied to the spray head, you can blast pieces of weathered siding right off of your house. Some manufacturers don’t mind the use of a pressure washer on their products while others advise against it. Because of how delicate some siding is manufactured, it’s easy to damage, so it’s best to proceed with caution.
Avoid These Cleaners…
Additionally, the use of abrasive, non-diluted cleaners like nail polish remover, organic solvents and chlorine bleach are not to be used on vinyl siding. These can damage the protective surface of your siding, along with highly abrasive scrubbers and steel wool can be harmful and cause damage when cleaning your vinyl siding. So in conclusion, pressure washing your vinyl siding can bring out the best in your siding and make it look brand new, but it also comes with significant risk for damaging your siding to the untrained eye and hands.
Factory Direct Siding
You can clean the siding from Factory Direct Siding just the same as traditional lap siding but it’s still important to be cautious when using a pressure washer as well. These methods work great on the Factory Direct product because of the superior strength and durability of the cedar shake siding. FDS’ cedar shake siding is 3X thicker than our closest priced competitor, giving our panel superior strength and durability. And due to the design formulation and color fastness of FDS siding, you won’t have to worry about any weathering or discoloration on the shakes even after years of use. It’s impervious to woodpeckers and bugs and comes in many different colors to help you express your individual style. The premium Cedar Shake Siding is the industry’s leading alternative to painted cedar wood siding. It’s easy to maintain, beautiful and customizable. FactoryDirectSiding.com uses state of the art technologies to produce the most realistic cedar shake panels on the market today. Eighteen real cedar shakes have been digitally scanned and recreated using 3D imagery. Those images are transferred to molds creating the most authentic looking shakes available on today’s market. Low-maintenance, worry-free option to help protect your home’s value and curb-appeal for years to come!