If you love all things vintage, there’s a huge chance you dream of a retro town-house from the 50s’, a romantic English cottage, or maybe even a Southern plantation house. Besides being an affordable alternative for people with a tight budget, there’s also a certain charm in living in a house with years and years of lifespan behind it. Purchasing this kind of house is like adopting an abandoned dog you’ll want to give it all the love and attention it lacked for such a long time. But where do you start? Clearly with a tiny bit of renovating that won’t disturb the overall vintage appearance. And sometimes, all a vintage gem needs is to be shined and polished with a pressure washer.

A powerful pressure washer can rid your new (old) house’s siding of any chipped off paint, mildew, grime and grease that has accumulated over the years. After you’re done, you will see the true look of the house that once stood proud and breathtaking. And don’t get intimidated by the workload, using a pressure washer is a lot less demanding than scrubbing everything by hand. Just follow the following guidelines and everything will be alright.

The preparations

Before you start pressure washing, close all doors and windows and isolate the ones that have a potential to leak. Remove any patio furniture and objects that the water could harm. Water and electricity don’t mix, so remember to turn off the power completely from the source. If the weather is particularly windy, consider postponing this because the wind can diminish the water pressure’s power.

Don’t get too close and don’t use maximum power unless necessary

This is the most common reason why people end up destroying what they initially wanted to clean up. And then they go and blame it all on the machine. But if they got informed about the basic technique how to use a high-pressure cleaner, they wouldn’t have this problem. When people see the accumulated slime and gunk they go all aggressive on it spraying as close to it as they can in full power. Besides getting wet and dirty themselves, they can also damage the wood or brick the house is build from. Stay at least half a meter away from the stain you want to remove. If your washer has more than 1500 psi, avoid using the maximum power level because it can blast through the already delicate wooden siding.

Use wide stream

Many pressure cleaners include adjustable pressure nozzles that offer a range of different degree streams. When washing delicate surfaces like an old house’s facade most surely is, a nozzle producing a wide fan of water (25 degrees is perfect) will generate enough power without doing any damage. This is only for starters, if you later estimate that the house can handle stronger pressure, you can shift to a more narrow nozzle.

No need for detergents

One of the main advantages of a pressure cleaner is that it does not require any chemical cleaning solutions, it works perfectly fine on its own. This makes it environment friendly and not harmful for your health. Also, harsh detergents can be detrimental for an already delicate surface. However, if you find some spot particularly difficult to clean, you can put a mild soap in the water. Just keep in mind that you shouldn’t let it dry on the walls because it can eat through them. Alternatively, you could use a natural remedy in the form of white vinegar. Pour some in a spray bottle and spread it over the mildew. Let it stay there for about 30 seconds to a minute and then rinse it with the pressure washer.

Let it dry

If you plan on painting the house, leave some time for the water to evaporate. A siding all soaked up in water will dilute the paint and as a result your house will look washed out. How long it will take to dry, depends on the weather. The safest bet is to leave it for 48 hours, but there’d be no problem if you waited even longer too.