4 tips for cleaning vinyl siding

4 tips for cleaning vinyl siding

The end of winter means it's time to begin spring cleaning tasks, such as cleaning accumulated dirt and grime from the exterior of your home and returning vibrancy to your cladding's colors. You can almost make it look like new vinyl siding again. In fact, popular vinyl siding manufacturers like CertainTeed recommend annual cleanings to ensure vinyl siding colors stay vibrant.

Cleaning vinyl siding is a job that is not difficult -- all you really need is a soft bristle brush and some soapy hot water -- or you can hire a professional to expertly clean vinyl siding. You can find a licensed, bonded and insured* contractor through this website to knock some time off your list of spring cleaning chores and avoid DIY mishaps.

Cleaning vinyl siding yourself

Here are a few tips if you plan to do the job youself:

The Vinyl Siding Institute recommends choosing a long-handled brush with soft-bristles to get grime out of textured surfaces. You also should have a hose and a five-gallon bucket filled with cleaning solution handy. Before you begin, keep these five tips in mind:

  1. Cleaning from the top down ensures you don't wash grime on already-cleaned areas or drive water underneath the cladding material.
  2. Make sure all windows are closed!
  3. Remove "hose-grabbing" items near the house such as patio furniture, barbecue, etc.
  4. Don't clean walls in high heat and direct sunlight.
  5. DIYers should avoid power washers. They can cause damage to the cladding and invalidate some warranties.

Once you are properly prepared for the task, you also need a cleaning solution. The VSI recommends using 30 percent vinegar to water, or 1/3 cup laundry powder, 2/3 cup cleanser (such as Spic & Span), one quart of bleach and a gallon of water. Cleaners such as Simple Green, Fantastik or Nice & Easy are good to remove bird droppings, spider webs, or various accumulated grime.

Pick one wall and work your way around the house scrubbing small sections. You might want to find some helpers. Of course, hiring a professional can help free up your weekend, as well as prevent cosmetic damage to siding. Most professionals know how to use a power washer on low pressure settings to safely and thoroughly clean wall cladding, and they can make short work of what might be a very time-consuming chore for you.

*See terms and conditions on http://www.streetcertified.com/about/Terms.jsp

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