Pressure washing is the process of cleaning the exterior part of a home, building or any other concrete surfaces with the use of a highly pressurized mechanical sprayer. It is used to remove tough substances such as loose paint, grime, mold, mud, dust and dirt. A pressure washer has a motor that runs a high-pressure water pump, a hose and a switch. The water supply must be sufficient because if not, the elements of the pump can be damaged.
High-pressure washing is used mostly in industrial cleaning to remove surface layers and for dust-free cutting of concrete and some metals. It is also used in residential homes today and many professional washers use it. However, high volume and low-pressure equipment was introduced as an alternative to lessen the chances of damaging the property.
How Pressure Washing Leads to Water Damage
If you are considering pressure washing the exterior of your home, it is essential to understand how it can possibly cause damage. The siding exterior of your home, if it has any, is installed so that water flows down on the panels without causing damage. If you are standing and spraying water upwards, the force of pressure washing can move water up or behind the panels, causing damage underneath. If water is trapped, it can be tough for it to completely dry on its own and eventually lead to mold buildup and rotten wood between the interior wall and exterior siding.
If you are using vinyl siding, it can become brittle over time and the high-pressure coming from pressure washing can cause holes or cracks and later trapped water behind the siding. This could even lead to mold production. Vinyl has protected coating, and pressure washing can damage it, causing oxidation. This appears like baby powder formed on the vinyl.
Avoiding Damage from Power Washers
Even if pressure washing can cause damage to your home’s siding, it does not mean that you should not use it any longer. Proper cleaning is the key in order to avoid damages. If you are thinking of doing it yourself, spend a few minutes to become familiar with the pressure. Read the manual for proper instructions or ask someone who knows how to use the equipment. This will make you sure of what to do rather than just wash and point the washer anywhere. Furthermore, it is important to repair or replace any damaged siding before pressure washing. Avoid spraying gaps such as those on the window or door trim. If your siding panels are overlapping, work at the topmost panel and keep the spray away from the bottom edges.
In case the inevitable happens and you notice that your home’s siding has been damaged by water from pressure washing, it is best to contact a water removal contractor. They know what to do best and they are equipped with the necessary tools to control and treat the damage. They can determine the extent of damage and perform the necessary steps to make sure that water is dried completely.