The steps on how to clean concrete without pressure washer are listed down below:
- Remove dust, dirt, debris, and leaves from concrete using a broom,
- Spray concrete with water,
- Apply the cleaning solution and rub it into the concrete using a brush,
- Wash the cleaning agent off concrete using a garden hose and the right nozzle.
Detailed information on how to clean concrete without pressure washer, why concrete shouldn’t be cleaned using a pressure washer, and equipment needed to clean concrete are provided below.
Why Not Use Pressure Washer to Clean Concrete
Pressure washers can remove motor oils and tough dirt off concrete but using the machine incorrectly can cause damage to concrete as well. Using a pressure washer at high pressure can wash away the joint sand, leave pitting lines on the concrete, and cause its gradual degradation. Using pressure washers with wrong nozzles or holding the pressure washer wand too close to the concrete can damage concrete permanently.
Equipment Needed to Clean Concrete
To clean concrete without pressure washer, use the items listed below:
- Cleaning agent such as vinegar, baking soda, or bleach,
- Large and stiff nylon-bristle block brush,
- Heavy-duty scrub brush,
- Spray bottle,
- Spray nozzle,
- Rubber gloves,
- Old clothes,
- Waterproof shoes.
How to Clean Concrete Without Pressure Washer
Before cleaning concrete, furniture, plants, and other objects should be removed from the surface and leaves, dust, and debris should be swept off using a broom. Concrete can be cleaned using soap and water, vinegar, baking soda, muriatic acid, bleach, carbonated drinks, or lemon juice, then the cleaning solution should be rinsed from the surface.
Preparing the surface
The concrete surface should be partially cleaned using a broom before being sprayed with water so no dust or dirt sticks to it. Nearby electrical outlets should be covered to avoid contact with water. Nearby plants should be covered with tarp to prevent strong chemicals from burning them.
Spraying the concrete
Concrete can be sprayed with water before applying a cleaning solution to remove another layer of dirt and reduce the cleaning time.
Applying a cleaning solution
A cleaning solution – soap and water, vinegar, baking soda, muriatic acid, bleach, carbonated drinks lemon juice, or trisodium phosphate should be applied to the concrete.
Soap and water
Soap or dish detergent and warm water can be used for light cleaning and removing regular debris from concrete. The concrete should be soaped and tough stains should be scrubbed away using a wire brush, then the surface should be rinsed with clear water.
Vinegar is an eco-friendly and safe cleaning solution that can be used for removing stubborn stains from concrete. Equal parts of water and vinegar should be mixed, then applied to oily and dirty areas and rubbed into concrete using a stiff-bristled brush. Undiluted vinegar should be applied to stains that aren’t instantly removed and they should be scrubbed after 10 minutes. The concrete should be rinsed away using a water hose.
A mix of 1 gallon of water and half a cup of baking can be applied to concrete to remove light to medium stains and regular dirt. To remove tough stains from concrete, mix 1 gallon of water, half a cup of baking soda, and ⅛ of cup of liquid dish detergent. This mixture should be applied to the stained areas and left for 20 minutes to react and break down the dirt. The concrete should be scrubbed using a brush and rinsed off.
Baking soda can be scrubbed into concrete and left overnight to remove discolored patches from it. Once the concrete is completely dry, baking soda should be rinsed off, then the sealer should be applied to the concrete to ensure the discoloration doesn’t reappear.
Muriatric acid can remove tough stains, dried grout, and rust from concrete. Protective glasses and gloves should be used when applying muriatric acid to concrete since it is a highly toxic chemical.
To clean concrete without pressure washer, bleach and water should be mixed in a spray bottle in equal ratios. The bleach and water mix should be applied to concrete, especially the stained areas, left to sit out for 10 minutes, and then scrubbed away using a stiff brush and rinsed with water. Protective eyewear, mask, and gloves should be worn when applying bleach to concrete.
Carbonated drinks, especially the ones that contain citric acid, can be used for cleaning concrete surfaces since the bubbles can lift stains off concrete and make them easier to remove. The drink should be poured over the stained area and left to sit on concrete for 30 minutes, then scrubbed and rinsed with water.
Lemon juice can remove stains and rust from concrete. Lemon juice should be applied to the stained area, rubbed into the surface using a wire brush after 10 minutes, and then rinsed with water.
Trisodium phosphate can be mixed with water, rubbed onto concrete, and scrubbed with a thick bristle or nylon brush for 10 minutes to remove stains.
1. How to make concrete white again?
Concrete can be made white again when vinegar, baking soda, or bleach is applied to stains or to the entire surface and scrubbed using a stiff-bristled scrub brush and never with a wire brush since it can damage concrete. Rinsing concrete can be done using a regular water hose or a low-pressure pressure washer. To prevent discoloration, the sealer can be applied to concrete that can be re-painted afterward. Using a penetrative sealer prevents cracks in concrete and prevents concrete from being slippery when it is raining.
2. How can I remove oily stains from concrete without pressure washer?
To remove oily stains from concrete without pressure washer, a strong laundry detergent should be applied to the stain and scrubbed into the concrete using a sponge or a brush. Sawdust mixed with acetone or another strong solvent can be applied to stains on concrete to absorb oils, then the surface should be rinsed with water.
3. Is pressure washing good for concrete?
Pressure washing can be good for concrete since it can remove oily stains and sticky spots from it, however, it can also make the surface degrade if high water pressure is applied to it.