Is Power Washing Bad for Your Florida Home? (Pro Advice)

May 12, 2023

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Florida is notorious for its harsh and often damaging elements. Unchecked, these elements can quickly erode your home's exterior surfaces, especially the roof, with dirt and grime, leading to long-term structural damage over time. However, the common misconception is that power washing your home is bad or not beneficial for it.

Have you ever heard that power washing is bad for your Florida home? It’s true that using the wrong cleansers and washing techniques can etch, dent, or scratch outdoor materials easily. On the other hand, professional pressure washing protects property against damage while improving curb appeal.

If you’re confused about these conflicting statements, keep reading! Knowing a bit more about pressure versus power washing can help you decide what’s best for your home. Additionally, you can also use this information when you need to call a professional power washing company. You’ll understand why they might recommend one process over another for various surfaces around your property.

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What is Pressure Washing vs. Power Washing in Florida?

First, it’s helpful to understand what is meant by pressure washing versus power washing. Second, looking at both processes in more detail ensures you know when they’re needed for your property.

Simply put, pressure washing means using pressurized water to clean something. For instance, if you add a pressure nozzle to a garden hose, you’re technically pressure washing your property!

When a professional power washes a property, they’ll use water straight from a tap. In turn, that water is just lukewarm or even somewhat cool. In most cases, using lukewarm water is sufficient for your outdoor cleaning needs.

However, some pressure washing equipment includes a heating coil, to heat water before it’s sprayed. When a contractor heats water for cleaning, that’s called power washing! Using hot water is excellent for some needed cleaning. On the other hand, it risks damage to certain materials and surfaces.

When to Choose Pressure Washing vs. Power Washing

Now that you understand pressure washing versus power washing, you might wonder which is best for your property. Check out these two processes in more detail:

When to choose power washing

Hot water helps dissolve grease, oil, and adhesives far better than lukewarm water. It also kills germs, bacteria, viruses, and other irritants. In turn, you might choose power washing versus standard pressure washing for:

  • Removing motor oil and other fluids from driveways
  • Dislodging stickers, tape, and glue
  • Melting paint and other coatings, for easier removal
  • Pulling up chewing gum
  • Sanitizing areas such as outdoor dining areas

A professional power washing contractor might also note when to use heated water for your property’s needed cleaning. For instance, they might spot tough stains best addressed with hot water versus harsh cleansers or high-pressure washing.

When to choose standard pressure washing

While hot water power washing is excellent for some cleaning needs, it’s not always recommended. In fact, hot water can etch and scratch wood decks and fences. Also, consider that power washing melts and strips paint. This is great for paint you want to remove but not a good choice for paint you want to keep!

Additionally, overly hot water can damage some soft plastics and rubber materials. Contractors don’t typically use it on PVC fencing, patio furniture, and other such pieces. Lastly, using hot water when it’s not needed only wastes money! Why pay to heat water when standard pressure washing can handle the job? This is great for cleaning your paver patio, driveway, or house siding and tile roof.

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Does Pressure Washing Damage Your Siding or Concrete?

When used incorrectly, pressure washing equipment damages outdoor materials easily. High-pressure washing can dent metal, vinyl, or concrete siding and outright split wood fences and deck rails. Additionally, using pressure washing equipment on asphalt shingles strips their granules. You can also blow shingles or tiles right off the roof.

Also, note that high-pressure cleaning and rinsing, when done incorrectly, can splatter dirt and grime onto nearby surfaces. In turn, using too much pressure can mean ending up with a bigger mess than when you started. Without proper training, someone using pressure washing equipment can also damage landscaping features and dislodge pavers.

However, this doesn’t mean that you should avoid pressure washing your property! When done correctly, pressure washing offers many benefits for your home or a commercial structure, including:

  • Roof washing kills mold and algae that might otherwise grow between shingles.
  • Gutter cleaning keeps them clog-free, reducing the risk of water damage to exterior walls and a property’s foundation.
  • Regular pressure washing siding removes damaging lawncare products, airborne chemicals, and grit from exterior walls.
  • Wood fence and deck washing helps prevent mold growth and resultant wood rot.
  • Dirt and grit on windows, brick, and other surfaces softens them over time. On the other hand, regular cleaning prevents premature damage.
  • Pressure washing removes dust, pollen, cobwebs, bird droppings, mold, and other irritants, for easier breathing when outdoors!

Clearwater Pressure Washing & Roof Cleaning is happy to help explain more about power washing in Florida. Call our pressure washing contractors when you’re ready for expert services. We’ll schedule a FREE inspection and price quote at your earliest convenience.


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