When you take the time before you start pressure washing, you’ll be a whole lot happier with all the work you do and the results when done.

-Adam Vermilyea
Benchmark Restoration & Cleaning

So, what happens when when you pressure wash your driveways, patios and decks?

Do you remove the layers of dirt, mildew, and mold exposing the concrete or wood to just enough cleaning pressure, water, and temperature to restore your home back to its former glory?

Or, do you end up with some area’s that are perfectly clean, other areas that didn’t come out clean enough; what about swirl-cut marks from too much pressure?

Those are enough questions for now. 🙂

But as you think about your answers, take a look at these five common pressure washing mistakes that keep your deck from looking new, and lasting as long as it deserves.

Each section includes guidance on how to fix the mistake.

Mistake #1: Not pressure washing frequently enough (or at all).

Four houses that all look basically the same were put up for sale near the neighborhood where I live. When a real estate agent starts taking potential buyers on tours of the houses, do you know what’s going to happen?

The potential buyers are going to examine the properties and make judgments about the differences they notice.

A woman is going to dislike the curb appeal one of the concrete walkways and select the house with the new-looking concrete walkway and extra large driveway. A man is going to love the house with the deck out back of the second house. Another woman is going to hate the look of the house with the extra large balconies and prefer the house with stone patio.

You get the point.

While these houses appear roughly similar from the outside, depending on how each of these surfaces have been cared for will have a major impact on how well the property is liked.

The same thing happens when you consider how they feel about your own home. The concrete and wood surfaces at each home might all look the same at first, however if you inspect these areas may find a reason why you feel “ho-hum” about your “ho-home”.

If your special features (your proverbial driveway, large balcony, or spacious living room) aren’t looking clean and new, you won’t be convinced to spend time in that space. You will even start too not allow yourself to visit that location of your own home…sounds like prison.  

How to fix it

Take 15 Minutes to Find Your Winning Difference

When you stop trying to pressure wash everything, it’s easier to do a quality job on feature that could use it the most.

Pressure washing is right for some features and your scrub brush may be right for others. That’s okay.

Mistake #2: Too much pressure

Too much pressure could cause your wood to furr, you could etch your concrete, strip paint, or even crack glass.

It can also be redundant.

How to fix it

If you immediately take a step back, use Time, Agitation, Cleaning Solution, and Temperature (T.A.C.T.) to remove your dirt and grime.  Only using agitation will usually just end up agitating you!

Mistake #3: Cleaning out of order

Plenty of have success pressure washing one area.  Ok, you clean off your patio, job well done. You take on one area, and you love the transformation … cool.

But if your patio isn’t the entire goal.  What if you would like to see your whole house as clean as your patio? With, this in mind you want to consider the order in which to proceed.

How to fix it

Impulsive cleaning soften fail to effectively clean your home. They may spray the contaminants directly onto an area that you have just cleaned using up more water, and more of your time you could spend learning how to ballroom dance (insert your hobby here – now you know mine)…frustration!

Planning your pressure washing order is relatively easy, just make sure you do it. Rather than starting at the bottom, you plan a well though out top-to-bottom procedure will solve your problem.

Mistake #4: You don’t give attention to water sensitive areas

Windows, door openings, and painted drywall patio coverings may still look safe if they don’t present visual crack or obvious sign makes you think, “This is a totally save area, blast away.”

When take a moment to look and feel your doors, windows, and other area with soft goods,  you won’t know until it’s too late you shouldn’t go full blast.

If you don’t anticipate openings, crevices, and drywall, you may expand your pressure washing to water damage restoration.

How to fix it

Seal your windows and doors.  Not certain about the material you are cleaning.  Take time to research a little first.

Then come back. Now the question is:

What areas of my house are water sensitive?

Mistake #5: You don’t use effective cleaning solutions, only water.

It will not easily remove the debris, and won’t prevent rapid regrowth.

If you don’t give your cleaning surface a concentration of proper cleaning solutions, you will have to use more agitation (wearing out your surface) and you will have to pressure wash more often.

How to fix it

When you start, pre-spray your cleaning solution on to the areas that are to be treated.  by doing this you are able to keep from overworking, prevent damage, and halt organic growth, saving from having to do this all over again next season.  Instead you can save doing it for another year.

Pressure wash your surfaces to love where you live

If you want to do more than just avoid the common areas outside your home like I mentioned at the beginning of this post, here’s an exercise:

  1. Assign each of the areas to a weekend.
  2. Spend a couple hours not during the weekend identifying where you might make those area are, concerns you may have and how you can fix them.
  3. By the end of the week, you’ll have a real handle on how to improve the outside of your property, by pressure washing going forward.

This is the perfect time to take all of the work you’ve put into your homeso far and make it even better for the next season of your life.

Shop Pressure Washing Services Here