Power Washing: Prevention, Maintenance, and Safety

Hello my happy homeowners! I have been asked by a lot by my clients what is the recommended amount power washing that should occur. I figured I would use this post to answer that question and others that come our way.

We use a power washing process called Soft Washing. Soft Washing, is a gentle power washing processes that effectively cleans your home and also helps with these three things: prevention, maintenance, and safety. Our customers have asked us so many questions regarding this. How does power washing do all three of these? How often should I power wash? What about those websites that claim power washing is bad for your home? I am here to help!

Soft Washing a home is a preventative measure for the exterior of your home. Unless, 100% of your home exterior is in the sunlight ALL the time, I can guarantee that there are some shady spots where mold is likely to grow. Soft washing will kill the mold, mildew and algae that is growing, trying to grow, or even thinking about growing. Mold spores are microscopic, so just think of how many spores are on your home once you do see it! It will also remove other organic material from the siding, creating a beautifully clean home exterior. By cleaning your home, at minimum once a year, you are preventing the growth of damaging substances on your home. We recommend have your home cleaned once a year, either in the spring or the summer. By doing this, you are protecting your home for the year. So by the the time Old Man Winter has left, you are ready to protect your home once more!

Soft Washing a home is a way of maintaining the exterior of your home. The weather can do some crazy things! Wind brings up dust, leaves and dirt. Rain and other moisture can cause mold and algae. Washing your homes exterior helps maintain the appearance of your home. It also gives your home “curb appeal”. By maintaining a clean exterior, you can actually add 5 to 10 percent to the value of your home!

Soft Washing a home is a way of keeping your family and pets safe! Believe it or not, just because mold is growing on the outside of your house, does not mean it can’t make its way inside your home! What a scary thought! Mold spores are airborne initially and can become airborne again. If they are growing on your homes exterior, they can make their way inside your home through an open window, open door, small child, or family pet. Soft washing kills the mold and keeps it off! No one wants mold around their family or pets.

Let us help you prevent damage, maintain a great appearance, and keep your home safe!!

East Coast Powerwashing is fully licensed and insured. We actively participate in the Power Washing of North America PWNA Association. We recently received PWNA Environmental Certification. We are certified by the Power Wash University for House/Building Washing. Additionally we have been award Angie’s List SUPER SERVICE Award 7 years in a row.

What is That Yucky Stuff on my House?

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The yucky stuff that we most commonly see growing on the siding of a house is mold, mildew (mold in early stage), or algae. Homeowners often ask these questions: 

So, what is mold? Mold is a fungus that produces spores - light-weight seeds. Mold spores are smaller than a human hair and multiply quickly. Spores can travel through the air to attach themselves to surfaces. When landing on damp spots, they begin to grow. So when we have a lot of rain, beware. Damp, dark conditions are ideal for mold growth. Mold is a necessary part of the environment. Without mold, leaves would not decay and soil enrichment would not take place. While mold is necessary for the environment, it is not necessary for inside or outside surfaces of your home.

What is the different between algae and mold? The difference between algae and mold is that algae is a plant, not a fungus. Algae is merely a plant that enjoys sunlight and moisture. It is a naturally occurring, moss like plant, that is spread through airborne spores, like mold. However, algae will not damage your home like mold will, it simply looks bad and can bring down the curb appeal on a home. 

            How does mold grow? Mold requires moisture to grow. That moisture can come from excessive rain or lack of sunlight. That’s why you may see mold growing only on the side of your house not exposed to the sun. Mold can begin to grow on a damp surface within 24 to 48 hours of water exposure. Mold can also grow if there is a buildup of dirt. Fungus feeds on dirt and dust as well. Mold will continue to grow if steps are not taken to remove it.

            Is mold harmful? Yes, mold can be harmful to both your home and your health. Remember how mold is necessary for the decay of leaves? That is what it can do to the inside and the outside of your home. Mold eats away at surfaces and will eventually penetrate the surfaces. Almost all materials can be damaged by mold over time as mold feeds on organic materials such as wood, paper, fabrics, and even glue. Once the mold begins to eat away at these materials, it can cause rotting, decay and destruction of the surfaces. If not removed, in extreme cases, mold can cause enough damage to collapse of ceilings, walls, and even floorboards. The mold on the exterior of your home can enter your home through open windows and doors. Better to just remove it as soon as you see it!

            How can mold on the exterior of a home be harmful to your health? Mold is a health hazard and can affect breathing, especially if an individual suffers from asthma or allergies. Children, the elderly, and those already suffering from illness are particularly susceptible to mold-related health problems. Children, and even pets, are susceptible to having a reaction to outside mold if they play outside near the home. 

            What can I do about mold? East Coast Powerwashing offers a service called a “soft wash.” Soft washing does more than just clean the dirt and pollen that has been collecting on your siding all year long.  It also kills and removes mold that is growing. When we soft wash, we use a soap mixture that contains a detergent to clean the siding and bleach to safely kill and remove the mold. After we pre-rinse the home, we apply this mixture to the house allowing it to penetrate the mold spores, killing them at the root. Rinsing the home with a low-pressure rinse follows this step. This safeguards the siding from damage and removes any existing mold from the home. Doing this once a year will keep most homes mold-free.