Vinyl siding cleaners for pressure washers have chemical formulas that avoid ingredients such as organic solvents and petroleum ethers which can damage vinyl. They come in different sizes and can clean mold, algae stains, mildew, and other types of stubborn dirt from vinyl surfaces.
Best vinyl siding cleaner brands are Wet and Forget, Zep, Simple Green, Scotts, Star Brite, and Krud Kutter. The advantages and disadvantages of these brands’ products are presented in the vinyl siding cleaner reviews.
This vinyl siding cleaner buying guide discusses in detail the factors that need to be considered before purchasing a vinyl siding cleaner for pressure washers. These factors include ingredients, formulas, packaging type, eco-friendliness, smell, and application methods.
The best vinyl siding cleaners are listed below:
- Wet and Forget 800003 Moss Mold Mildew & Algae Stain Remover
- Zep House and Siding Pressure Wash Cleaner 128 Ounce
- Star Brite Mold & Mildew Stain Remover + Cleaner
- Simple Green Pro HD Heavy Duty Cleaner Concentrate 1 Gallon
- Simple Green House and Siding Pressure Washer Cleaner 1 Gal
- Scotts FBA 51501 Concentrate Plus Oxi Clean Outdoor Cleaner
- Krud Kutter HW01 Clear House Wash with Mild Odor, 1 Gallon
Best Vinyl Siding Cleaner For Pressure Washer Comparison Chart
Wet and Forget 800003 Moss Mold Mildew & Algae Stain Remover
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Zep House and Siding Pressure Wash Cleaner 128 Ounce
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Star Brite Mold & Mildew Stain Remover + Cleaner
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Simple Green Pro HD Heavy Duty Cleaner Concentrate 1 Gallon
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Simple Green House and Siding Pressure Washer Cleaner 1 Gal
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Scotts FBA 51501 Concentrate Plus Oxi Clean Outdoor Cleaner
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Krud Kutter HW01 Clear House Wash with Mild Odor, 1 Gallon
Best Vinyl Siding Cleaner Reviews
1. Wet and Forget 800003 Moss Mold Mildew & Algae Stain Remover
Wet & Forget is a brand that specializes in the production of high-quality easy to use residential cleaning solutions.
The Wet and Forget 800003 is a cleaning solution designed to efficiently remove algae, lichen, mold, mildew, and moss stains from various surfaces. These surfaces include decks, driveways, gutters, outdoor furniture, fiberglass, inflatable boats, pool surrounds, play equipment, and many more.
The Wet and Forget Moss Mold Mildew & Algae Stain Remover stands out among competitors because it is really easy to use. The product doesn’t require any scrubbing or rinsing after application, it just needs to be applied evenly to an exterior dirty surface and will do its job really quickly.
The Wet and Forget Moss Mold Mildew & Algae Stain Remover costs around $30 – $35.
The Wet and Forget Moss Mold Mildew & Algae Stain Remover is a concentrated solution and comes in a 0.5-gallon container. This quantity is enough to produce 3 gallons of cleaning solution. The active ingredient of this soap is alkyl dimethyl benzyl ammonium chloride which is present in a percentage of 9.9%.
The advantages of the Wet and Forget Moss Mold Mildew & Algae Stain Remover are as follows:
- The Wet and Forget 800003 is long-lasting, as it can be used for more than one year because it is a concentrated solution.
- The Wet and Forget 800003 is biodegradable.
- The Wet and Forget 800003 is bleach-free, non-caustic, and does not contain any acids.
- The Wet and Forget 800003’s pH is close to the one of water.
- The Wet and Forget 800003 is highly effective when used on vinyl surfaces and makes them look new.
The disadvantages of the Wet and Forget Moss Mold Mildew & Algae Stain Remover are as follows:
- The Wet and Forget 800003 has a strong odor.
2. Zep House and Siding Pressure Wash Cleaner 128 Ounce
Zep is a brand with a history of more than 80 years in the cleaning industry. This brand is renowned for designing reliable products for both residential and professional use.
The Zep House and Siding Pressure Wash Cleaner is a cleaning agent formulated to thoroughly remove dirt and mildew stains from hard coat stucco, gutters, bricks, aluminum and wood siding, and more. This product is ideal for reviving vinyl surfaces.
The Zep House and Siding Pressure Wash Cleaner’s primary asset is the fact that it has a safe formula that doesn’t damage plants. The active ingredient used in this cleaner is sodium carbonate. Even if this product doesn’t harm plants, the use of protective gloves and goggles is recommended.
The Zep House and Siding Pressure Wash Cleaner costs around $15.
The Zep House and Siding Pressure Wash Cleaner comes in a 1-gallon container and is designed for a pressure washer or manual application. This cleaning agent has a concentrated formula that is enough to make 20 gallons of cleaning solution. This amount is enough to cover a surface of 5000 square feet.
The advantages of the Zep House and Siding Pressure Wash Cleaner are as follows:
- The Zep House and Siding Cleaner is really affordable compared to similar products.
- The Zep House and Siding Cleaner needs only 5 to 10 minutes to penetrate and provide deep cleaning results.
- The Zep House and Siding Cleaner is certified as Climate Pledge Friendly and is also accompanied by a Compact by Design certification that attests that the production process comes with low carbon emissions.
- The Zep House and Siding Cleaner can be used regularly without producing toxic vapors.
The disadvantages of the Zep House and Siding Pressure Wash Cleaner are as follows:
- The Zep House and Siding Cleaner may cause staining if it is not rinsed in time.
3. Star Brite Mold & Mildew Stain Remover + Cleaner
Star Brite is a company founded in 1973 that is renowned for producing high-performing cleaning agents designed for a wide variety of surfaces. These surfaces include fields like marine, auto, home, or RVs.
The Star Brite Mold & Mildew Stain Remover is a cleaner solution designed for vinyl, cushions, covers, tops, and other types of upholstery. This product provides great results when used for cleaning outdoor upholstery and acrylic materials.
The Star Brite Mold & Mildew Stain Remover’s key strength is versatility. This cleaning agent is perfect for removing mildew and mold from a wide pallet of surfaces around the house such as wood, fiberglass, drywall, concrete, gutters, tiles, vinyl, and more.
The Star Brite Mold & Mildew Stain Remover costs around $13.
The Star Brite Mold & Mildew Stain Remover comes in a 22-oz spraying container and is not suited for pressure washing. This cleaner has to be sprayed several times on the dirty surface in order to produce great results.
The Star Brite Mold & Mildew Stain Remover’s formula is highly alkaline and combines surfactant, bleach, and lye, which makes it ideal for removing old and stubborn stains. This cleaning agent’s active ingredients are Sodium Hypochlorite, N-methyl-N-(1-oxododecyl), sodium salt, and Glycine.
The advantages of the Star Brite Mold & Mildew Stain Remover are as follows:
- The Star Brite Mold & Mildew Stain Remover contains buffered-bleach that makes it highly effective in removing mold.
- The Star Brite Mold & Mildew Stain Remover is really easy to use as it has a prediluted formula that eliminates messy use.
- The Star Brite Mold & Mildew Stain Remover acts without the need for scrubbing or brushing.
The disadvantages of the Star Brite Mold & Mildew Stain Remover are as follows:
- The Star Brite Mold & Mildew Stain Remover might not work with one application, a few sprays might be needed for deep cleaning.
4. Simple Green Pro HD Heavy Duty Cleaner Concentrate 1 Gallon
Simple Green is a brand made by Sunshine Markers, Ink that is renowned in the cleaning industry for producing efficient soaps and detergents for a wide variety of surfaces, including vinyl.
The Simple Green Pro Heavy Duty Cleaner is a product formulated for professional use that works well on surfaces such as walls, floors, machinery, engines, car exteriors, and more. This cleaning agent is really efficient in removing grease, stains, and grime from vinyl.
The Simple Green Pro Heavy Duty Cleaner stands out among competitors because it is a great option for pressure washer use. This product has a concentrated formula, perfect for power washers that have a soap dilution system, and is ideal for both low and high-pressure levels.
The Simple Green Pro Heavy Duty Cleaner costs around $25 – $30.
The Simple Green Pro Heavy Duty Cleaner comes in a liquid formula and is packed in a 1-gallon container. This concentrated detergent combined with water can provide 14 gallons of diluted solution. The active ingredients of this cleaning agent are amphoteric surfactants and non-ionic surfactants.
The advantages of the Simple Green Pro Heavy Duty Cleaner are as follows:
- The Simple Green Pro Heavy Duty Cleaner provides quick results when used manually, as well as with a pressure washer.
- The Simple Green Pro Heavy Duty Cleaner is safe to use on various types of metal, such as aluminum, stainless steel, chrome, and more because it has non-corrosive properties.
- The Simple Green Pro Heavy Duty Cleaner doesn’t need tough scrubbing when used manually.
- The Simple Green Pro Heavy Duty Cleaner is biodegradable.
- The Simple Green Pro Heavy Duty Cleaner is environmentally friendly because its production has a reduced carbon footprint.
The disadvantages of the Simple Green Pro Heavy Duty Cleaner are as follows:
- The Simple Green Pro Heavy Duty Cleaner does not provide great results when used on heavy mold stains.
5. Simple Green House and Siding Pressure Washer Cleaner 1 Gal
Simple Green is a renowned brand in the cleaning industry specialized in the production of reliable and efficient soaps and detergents suited for residential, as well as professional use.
The Simple Green Oxy Solve House And Siding Cleaner is a pressure washer concentrate formulated for house sidings made of various materials, such as aluminum, wood, stucco, vinyl, and more.
The Simple Green Oxy Solve House And Siding Cleaner is different from its competitors because it is not toxic to the environment and does not contain harsh chemicals. This cleaning agent doesn’t use bleach to revive surfaces but uses Hydrogen peroxide instead. The peroxide helps remove grime, dirt, mildew, moss, and algae without much effort. The other ingredients present in this cleaning agent are water, ethoxylated alcohol, Tetrasodium Glutamate Diacetate, Citric Acid, and Tetrasodium Glutamate Diacetate.
The Simple Green Oxy Solve House And Siding Cleaner costs around $20 – $25.
The Simple Green Oxy Solve House And Siding Cleaner comes in a 1-gallon container, is meant to be used together with a pressure washer, and can clean up to 6400 square feet.
The advantages of the Simple Green Oxy Solve House And Siding Cleaner are as follows:
- The Simple Green Oxy Solve House And Siding Cleaner is highly affordable considering the large surface it covers.
- The Simple Green Oxy Solve House And Siding Cleaner provides quick deep cleaning.
- The Simple Green Oxy Solve House And Siding Cleaner comes with an EPA Safer Choice certification which attests to its safety for both humans and the environment.
- The Simple Green Oxy Solve House And Siding Cleaner has a concentrated formula that can be transformed into 21-gallons of cleaning solution.
The disadvantages of the Simple Green Oxy Solve House And Siding Cleaner are as follows:
- The Simple Green Oxy Solve House And Siding Cleaner is not suited for old hard stains.
6. Scotts FBA 51501 Concentrate Plus Oxi Clean Outdoor Cleaner
Scotts is a brand that focuses on providing eco-friendly products with reduced pollution levels. This brand provides outdoor cleaning products as well as lawn seeds, tools, and accessories.
The Scotts Multi-Purpose Outdoor Cleaner is a cleaning agent designed for removing dirt, stains, algae, mold, and mildew from a wide variety of outdoor surfaces, such as wood, stone, cement, brick, wood composite, vinyl, and more.
The Scotts Multi-Purpose Outdoor Cleaner stands out due to its high levels of safety. This cleaning solution is safe to use around fabrics, plants, and lawns because it is bleach-free. The Hydrogen peroxide present in the product is responsible for delivering impeccable surfaces.
The Scotts Multi-Purpose Outdoor Cleaner costs around $20 – $25.
The Scotts Multi-Purpose Outdoor Cleaner has a concentrated formula that has to be diluted according to the cleaning needs. For heavy cleaning, the product shouldn’t be diluted, but for medium and light-duty tasks it should be combined with water on a ratio of 1:3, respectively 1:9. This cleaning solution comes in a 2.5-gallon container, has foaming properties, and removes stains really quickly when applied using a pressure washer.
The advantages of the Scotts Multi-Purpose Outdoor Cleaner are as follows:
- The Scotts Multi-Purpose Outdoor Cleaner doesn’t contain chlorine or phosphates that can be harmful to both the user, as well as for the environment.
- The Scotts Multi-Purpose Outdoor Cleaner can deliver up to 25 gallons of cleaning solution when used for light-duty cleaning tasks.
- The Scotts Multi-Purpose Outdoor Cleaner is perfect for pressure washers because it has a formula that will not deteriorate them.
The disadvantages of the Scotts Multi-Purpose Outdoor Cleaner are as follows:
- The Scotts Multi-Purpose Outdoor Cleaner is not so efficient for manual use.
7. Krud Kutter HW01 Clear House Wash with Mild Odor, 1 Gallon
Krud Kutter is a brand that focuses on the improvement of cleaning solutions’ formulas in order to deliver eco-friendly products that are still efficient, reliable, and easy to use.
The Krud Kutter HW01 Clear House Wash is designed to clean siding made of various materials such as bricks, stucco, masonry, wood, vinyl, and more.
The Krud Kutter HW01 Clear House Wash stands out among similar products because it is completely biodegradable and safe to use around children and pets. This cleaning agent does not contain bleach or ammonia, which might be toxic for animals and humans if used in inappropriate amounts. The EPA certification that this product comes with attests to its eco-friendliness.
The Krud Kutter HW01 Clear House Wash costs around $25.
The Krud Kutter HW01 Clear House Wash comes in a plastic bottle that holds 1 gallon of concentrated cleaner. Depending on the cleaning task, this product can be diluted up to a ratio of 1:19, meaning that the total cleaning solution made from this product is 20 gallons. This amount can cover up to 4000 square feet.
The advantages of the Krud Kutter HW01 Clear House Wash are as follows:
- The Krud Kutter HW01 Clear House Wash has a mild scent that will not bother the user or the people in proximity.
- The Krud Kutter HW01 Clear House Wash is water-based and can be rinsed really easily without leaving any marks.
- The Krud Kutter HW01 Clear House Wash is a multi-purpose cleaning agent that can be used all around the house, not just for vinyl.
- The Krud Kutter HW01 Clear House Wash is ideal for pressure washers.
The disadvantages of the Krud Kutter HW01 Clear House Wash are as follows:
- The Krud Kutter HW01 Clear House Wash might remove old stains efficiently because it is not very strong.
What Are Vinyl Siding Cleaners and Do You Need One?
Keeping your house spotless inside out doesn’t have to be a drag. Aluminum, vinyl, wood, concrete, and stone are all house-building materials that can be freely pressure washed.
If it’s about time to clean your siding, you can’t use just any off-the-shelf multi-purpose cleaner:
- Some of the all-purpose cleaners are too weak, so they can’t help you get rid of the mold, lichen, sap, bug and bird waste, mud, rain marks, and other outdoor calamities that commonly soil the beauty of vinyl siding.
- On the other hand, if you use a multi-purpose cleaner that is too strong, or contains a wrong ingredient, you may end up with clean but discolored and damaged house siding.
- Finally, not all products can be used with a pressure washer. Some of them may simply not create suds when blasted at 1500 PSI, while others may even damage parts of your pressure washer.
Luckily, many companies and brands know about this issue. That’s why they decide to formulate products specifically for vinyl siding pressure washing – to keep it clean and beautiful without creating damage.
For your convenience, they’re made and packaged in many shapes and forms. You can get a small, 22 fl oz spray bottle to get rid of spots, or even a 2.5-gallon jug of concentrated product to use in your pressure washer many times.
Vinyl Siding Cleaner Buying Guide
Choosing the right vinyl siding cleaner has many nuisances. As you try to navigate the market, you may feel overwhelmed with the sheer number of available products, which have very minor differences between them. That’s why we decided to create this buying guide. Here, we will cover the most important factors that you should consider before you make your final pick of vinyl siding cleaner for pressure washers.
1. Ingredient List
The ingredients are the most important factor to consider, but sadly, they’re also the hardest to understand and check. Here are some general guidelines to help you make your pick.
You should always go with products based on inorganic solvents like water and hydrogen peroxide, or soaps with surfactants like alkyl sulfates. The focus here is on inorganic and water-soluble ingredients because these are not likely to cause a bad reaction with the vinyl material.
Avoid cleaners based on organic solvents and petroleum ethers (for example, benzene, acetone, and THF) because these are likely to damage your vinyl siding, usually resulting in discoloration, haziness, or causing the material to lose vitality and flexibility.
If you’re battling mold and mildew on the outside of your house, you can opt for some of the products with ammonium chloride, chlorine bleach, and oxygenated bleach. These are very successful at getting rid of the boring fungi.
However, keep in mind that bleach-based solutions can damage your plants and your pressure washer, with a particularly strong effect on the pump seals, which will make a pressure washer pump replacement necessary. You can, however, use a spray bottle of bleach-based products sprayed directly on the problem area.
2. Concentrated or Pre-diluted Formula
Just like with car cleaning and household products, in the vinyl siding cleaner industry, you can choose between two types of cleaning products: concentrated, or ready to use.
A concentrated product requires you to dilute it in water before use, with the dilution ratio in many cases depending on the severity of dirt you need to clean. Effectively, this means that for every gallon of concentrated product, you actually get anywhere between 3 and 10 gallons of soap to use. That makes the concentrated products way more economical, and they can last you a long time. However, it also means you need time and separate bottles to dilute the product. Most often, this kind of product comes in half a gallon bottle or larger.
On the other hand, you can get a formula that is pre-diluted and ready to use. These are most often sold in smaller spray bottles or half a gallon bottle with built-in spraying mechanisms. These can help you save some time and effort, but they come at a higher price. In fact, pre-made formulas usually end up costing a lot more per gallon than concentrated products.
3. Packaging Type
The packaging type mostly depends on the formula of your product.
Concentrated formulas are usually sold in large bottles, ranging from 0.5 to 5-gallon containers. However, you may also find smaller bottles of concentrated products, which are easier to maneuver. Typically, concentrated products come with a bottle cap that measures 1 fl oz or another amount which helps you determine the right dilution ratio with ease.
Pre-diluted formulas generally come in containers that are ready for application off-the-shelf. In practice, that either means a spray bottle or a bottle with a spraying adapter for your garden hose or pressure washer hose. These are usually easier to use, but they also contain less product and cost a bit more.
4. Garden and Eco-Friendliness
After you rinse off the cleaner off your home siding, it has to end up somewhere. Usually, that means either the soil around your home, or it travels via the gutters until it finally ends up in a river, lake, or sea. In either case, you want to minimize the impact you have on nature.
Whether that’s to protect your garden plants or to keep fish and other aquatic life safe, you should look for the eco-friendly option. These are usually marked with “non-toxic”, “biodegradable”, or “EPA Safer Choice” labels. All of these make sure that keeping up the curb appeal of your house doesn’t ruin the health of the environment.
Additionally, these products are also much safer for you, your family, neighbors, and pets, because the fumes created by spraying non-eco products can be dangerous.
Finally, if you’re going through the trouble of making your home look good, you might as well make it smell great too. There are a plethora of suitable products for pressure washing your vinyl siding, so you can also factor in the smells that you enjoy or can’t stand. Of course, what does or doesn’t smell good depends entirely on your personal preference.
Vinyl Siding Cleaner Application Methods
There are different ways to apply your vinyl siding cleaner. Of course, this mainly depends on the type of product that you opted for. The most common ways of applying products to clean your vinyl siding are through a built-in applicator, with a bucket and a medium soft-bristled brush, or spraying it on with your pressure washer.
Of course, nothing stops you from trying different applications with your product – just make sure you don’t put products that aren’t formulated for your pressure washer into your machine. In fact, you may need some manual scrubbing if you come across a really tough stain or mold patch.
1. Built-in Applicator
Just like with multi-purpose soaps, some vinyl siding cleaners come with a built-in applicator. Usually, that’s a spray bottle or an adapter which connects the bottle to your garden hose or pressure washer wand.
If you choose to use a product with an adapter with your pressure washer, make sure that the container was designed to handle the force of a pressure washer. If that’s not the case, the adapter may burst. You will not only lose the money you spent on the product, but it may spill all over your garden and you, which can cause serious injury including chemical burns on your skin, respiratory system, or eyes. Make sure that the product is designed for pressure washing before attempting to hook it up.
On a lighter note, spray bottle products are not convenient when you’re washing your entire house, but they can be very handy when dealing with small problem areas. If you need to remove mold and mildew, or there’s a particularly tough bit of dropping, sap, or grease, you may find a bleach-based spray bottle cleaner a very good tool.
2. Manual Application
If you don’t have a foam nozzle tip (usually black) or a top-rated foam cannon for your pressure washer, you may have to apply soap to your siding manually. This can be long and tough work, so you should get the right tools for the job. We recommend getting a medium-soft bristled brush with a long handle, and a reliable bucket for your product.
However, if you’re pressure washing, but there’s a particularly tough stain to remove, getting at it by hand may give you more control and power to remove the spot. Luckily, you don’t need a separate product to do that – most pressure washer vinyl cleaners can also be applied by hand.
2. Pressure Washing
Pressure washing is by far the fastest and easiest cleaning method. That’s because most of the tasks that traditionally require elbow grease are replaced by the high-pressure stream of water. However, you should make sure that the product you choose is suitable for pressure washers. Not all formulas can create good suds when blasted at high pressures, and some products (like bleach-based cleaners) can even damage the inner parts of your pressure washer.
When washing your home with a pressure washer, you should never climb on a ladder. The strong pressure can cause you to fall, resulting in life-threatening injuries. Instead, you can use a pressure washer extension wand to reach the high-up parts of your house.
If you come across a dirt spot that is resisting the blasting water, you may have to attack it manually, applying your product with a brush. However, an even more effective and easy way to get rid of tough spots is by using the top-rated pressure washer brushes, which combines the power of pressurized water and scrubbing bristles for a spotless finish.
How to Use a Pressure Washer to Clean Vinyl Siding
Washing your home exterior has never been this simple and quick. When you know exactly what you need to do, you don’t have to worry about how the end results will look like. With the right process, you can reach that top-notch curb appeal, every time.
Here’s our basic guide for washing your vinyl siding with a pressure washer. Here, we’ll give you an overview of the general siding washing process. Feel free to experiment and share tips and tricks with us and the other readers in the comment section below!
1. Equipment You Need
You don’t need a lot of different equipment to wash your house with a pressure washer. However, there are some tools which you must have, and some optional devices to make the job easier.
- Pressure washer
- Pressure washer nozzle tips: 25 degrees (green) or 40 degrees (white), and a black foaming tip (alternatively – a manual brush for applying soap)
- Vinyl siding detergent
Optional tools are:
- Pressure washer extension wand to reach high-up
- Pressure washer brush to scrub tough spots
You can learn more about pressure washers and their accessories on our website.
2. Before You Start
Here are some general guidelines of things you should pay attention to, and some tasks you must complete before you can get started with actual washing. These are what you need to know to understand how to clean vinyl siding with a pressure washer.
2.1. Preparing your home
First off, you should pick a clear, mild day with low wind for washing your house. If the sun is too strong, it may dry your soap before you get to rinse it, which can be a nuisance. Strong winds can cause unexpected trouble affecting your water stream, and how dirty suds fall down. Ideally, you should work in the spring or early summer.
You surely know that water and electricity don’t mix well. Make sure you turn off electricity to any open outlets on the outside of your house. You should also cover your light and other electric fixtures with plastic wrap and tape. Also, make sure you’re not using your pressure washer around power lines or any exposed electricity.
Move or cover your lawn furniture. You don’t want it to get wet, or to get in the way. Also, make sure your doors and windows are well closed before you start spraying – of course, you don’t want to get your inner walls or carpets wet.
Make sure that there aren’t any deteriorated areas where wooden or vinyl pieces may not be able to withstand the powerful blast from the pressure washer. Repair them, or avoid them once you begin.
2.2. Preparing your lawn
If some plants or bushes lean on your siding, you may have to trim them. Not only is it better not to spray your plants with soap, but it will also help you locate heavily soiled spots. That’s because parts of the siding that are covered under plants often get the worst mold and mildew, in addition to the green discoloration from leaves.
Take your garden hose or pressure washer, and wet down your shrubs, plants, and grass before you start washing your home. This way, you will make sure that the soap doesn’t stick to the plants. Instead, you’ll be able to rinse down any soap that gets onto your plants with ease.
2.3. Personal safety
You should also make sure that you and your family is not in any way harmed by your siding pressure washing. First off, make sure that everybody in the household knows that you’ll be working with the pressure washer on cleaning your home. That way, nobody will make simple mistakes like opening the window or getting near the blast kickback area where there’s a lot of soap chemicals in the air.
Always wear eye protection when working with detergents and soaps. As your pressurized water hits the wall, it will get some kickback and come right back at you. Having eye protection will make sure your most delicate organ stays untouched by the harsh cleaning chemicals. We recommend wearing a breathing mask and hearing protection as well, along with water-resistant boots and clothes.
NEVER STAND ON A LADDER WHEN PRESSURE WASHING. If you own a two-story house, that may seem unavoidable, but, instead of climbing a ladder you can use a telescoping extension wand.
3. Setting Up
Once you’ve taken care of your personal safety, and prepared your home and lawn, you can get started.
Now it’s time to set up your pressure washer. Hook up your water intake hose, and plug your electric pressure washer, or pour fuel into your gas-powered model. Add your vinyl siding cleaner – whether that’s through a siphon tube or in a separate detergent tank in your pressure washer.
Set up your PSI between 1200 and 1600. This will be enough for the entire job.
Prepare your nozzle tips. You will need your black foam nozzle tip, a pressure washer brush, or a standard medium soft-bristled brush in the first step – applying soap. Once it’s time to rinse the soap, you’ll need either a green 25-degree nozzle tip or a white 40-degree tip for proper rinsing. The green one will give you a smaller fan of water and more pressure, while the white one will make it easy to rinse larger areas but apply less pressure on each spot. That’s why we recommend using both and swapping them according to the area you’re working on.
4. Applying Soap
First off, you should soap up your house. Use the black foam nozzle tip with a lower pressure setting, a cannon, a pressure washer brush, or a regular manual brush to apply the vinyl siding cleaner to your walls.
You should apply soap from the bottom up. If you’re used to washing your car, this may sound counter-intuitive, but there’s an important reason to swap the order when dealing with a huge area like your house. That’s because if you let dirty suds run down on the dry area, it will cause ugly streaks. So, essentially, work from the bottom upwards, even though that means you may need to rinse or re-do the lower part of the siding.
To make the job easier, you shouldn’t attempt to soap up an entire wall at once, and instead, work area by area. You don’t want the soap to dry before you can rinse it. However, you shouldn’t rinse it straight away either. Once you foam up your area, leave it between 5 and 10 minutes (or per soap manufacturer instructions) before rinsing it.
If you find a particularly dirty spot, you may need to scrub it with a medium soft-bristled brush, either manually or with a pressure washer brush. Don’t worry – you can use the same soap for pressure washing and manual scrubbing.
Finally, it’s time to rinse down your soap, and do it before it dries!
For this task, you will need either a 25-degree green or a 40-degree white nozzle tip. Use the white, wider angle tip if there’s no need to scrub, but you only need to rinse soap. If there’s an area that requires higher pressure, use the green tip which produces a more focused stream.
The nozzle of your pressure washer wand should be around 1 foot from the surface when rinsing. Spray at it directly if you can. Never spray underneath horizontal siding panels. Instead, you should rinse your siding by spraying side-to-side, one panel at the time. Make sure to never spray at windows directly.
When rinsing, you should go in the opposite direction than when you applied soap. That means that you should rinse your area from the top down. After all, you don’t want to get dirty suds on the already clean areas, but you may still have to rinse your lower parts again, especially if a lot of dirt came down from the upper parts of your home.
Once you’re done, you only need to let your home to dry naturally, and you’ll have the best looking home in the neighborhood!
FAQ About Vinyl Siding Cleaners
1. Can I make my own vinyl siding cleaner solution?
You can make your own vinyl siding cleaner solution, but you can’t use it in a pressure washer. Apply your solution with a spray bottle, and use a soft or medium bristled brush to scrub the trouble spot. Then rinse down with fresh water from your pressure washer.
You can make two solutions with ingredients you have in your kitchen.
One is a vinegar solution that you can use for general dirt, discoloration, and light grime. The benefit of vinegar is that it’s completely natural and non-toxic, so it won’t harm you, your pets, or your plants. You simply need to mix 1 part vinegar to 3 parts water in a spray bottle. White vinegar will do. Spray your area, let it sit for a few minutes, scrub, and rinse. You can use a bit of soap while scrubbing, but apply soap after your vinegar had time to sit.
The other solution you can make at home is a bleach solution that can help you tackle severe dirt, lichen, and mold. Add 1 quart of bleach to 1 gallon of water, and apply it directly to the troubled area. Bleach is a powerful sanitizer, and it kills bacteria and fungi. Remember that bleach should be handled with care. Don’t use it in a spray bottle or your pressure washer. You don’t want bleach sprayed around in the air you breathe, and especially near your eyes. Additionally, don’t use bleach in your pressure washer because it will damage your pump. Finally, you shouldn’t use bleach on colored vinyl. As it does with clothes, bleach will burn through the paint, causing white spots. However, if you have white vinyl siding, you can use bleach to bring its shine back.
2. How often should I clean my vinyl siding?
There’s no right or wrong time for power washing vinyl siding – if it’s dirty, it’s time for a wash. In general, you should pressure wash your siding once a year, or more frequently if there’s a lot of mold or grime buildup. If your siding still feels clean after a year, you can skip the task and pressure wash your siding once every two years.
3. What time of year is best for power washing vinyl siding?
Mild weather, without wind or rain, is ideal for pressure washing. It may seem intuitive to clean your siding in the summer, but you don’t want the strong sun to dry your soap before you can rinse it – that’s a recipe for siding with streaks. Wind, on the other hand, can change the direction of water drops, making sideway streaks, or even blowing water back into your face. Ideally, you should wash your vinyl paneling on a mild spring day, or in early summer, depending on your climate.
4. Can I use a bleach-based vinyl siding cleaner with my pressure washer?
Absolutely not. Bleach can easily damage the heart of your pressure washer – its pump. In fact, running bleach through your pressure washer will deteriorate your pump seals, and also dramatically shorten the lifespan of your pressure washer hose.
That being said, you shouldn’t use a bleach solution in any type of spray application. For example, spraying bleach with a spray bottle creates a mist of bleach in the air, which is dangerous to breathe in and can damage your plants and lawn furniture.
If you absolutely must use bleach, scrub it on where you need it with a brush, let it sit for a few minutes, and gently rinse before you spray the area with your pressure washer.
5. What PSI should I use to clean my vinyl siding?
Vinyl siding is quite resilient, but it isn’t impenetrable, and it can be damaged with a powerful force like the water from your pressure washer. To avoid damaging your siding, you should never use more than 1800 PSI on your vinyl panels, with the average needed pressure being around 1400 PSI.
Remember that you should never spray underneath the horizontal siding, or pressure wash windows, doors, or any loose or damaged parts of your house.
Vinyl is a wonderful material for house siding. It’s resilient to weather, resistant to many kinds of pests and bacteria, and it simply looks very good. But if you want your vinyl siding to last you a lifetime, regular maintenance is key. Luckily, getting your home to look fresh and lovely is not as hard as it used to be. In fact, with one of the best vinyl siding cleaners for pressure washers, you can use the benefits of the modern age to make this job simple and quick.
We hope you found the answers to all your questions in our buying guide and vinyl siding cleaner reviews. We tried to bring you the most reliable information and honest opinions on the products. If there’s still something you’d like to ask, don’t hesitate to do so the comment box – we’ll get back to you as soon as possible.