There may not be a magic wand that can banish years of mildew, soot, and grime from your home’s exterior surfaces, but there is a pressure washer. This simple piece of equipment can help you clean a wide range of materials, and with the right know-how, it’s easy to use.

If you want to tackle the job yourself, make sure to prepare your work area by covering surrounding plants with plastic sheeting or drop cloths, closing windows and doors, and shutting off power to any exterior outlets on the section of the house you’ll be cleaning. You’ll also want to cover doors and windows with tape or ducting, and trim back any shrubbery that could be harmed by the powerful water jets.

Once you’ve prepped the work area, start by testing the sprayer with a small spot on an inconspicuous area of your house’s surface. Then rinse the area, ensuring that the high-pressure jets won’t damage the paint or other surface. Next, begin your cleaning project. Work from top to bottom, spraying overhangs and gutters first if necessary. Finally, rinse the entire surface of your home’s siding, using a steady side-to-side motion.

Aside from giving your home a facelift, regular power washing can make your home more energy-efficient by allowing you to remove dirt and debris that can trap heat, causing your air conditioning to run more frequently. It can also reveal any areas that need repairs, such as sagging fence boards or missing roof tiles, so you can address them before they get worse.

If you’re planning on repainting your home, a good clean-up with a power washer is also essential to ensure that new paint will adhere properly. Layers of dirt, mold spores, and other allergens will interfere with the life of your new coat of paint and cause it to chip or peel prematurely.

Keeping your home’s exterior clean will not only give it a fresh, appealing look, but it can also lower your insurance rates and protect the value of your investment. To find out more about how to keep your house in tip-top shape, contact your Annandale power washing company.