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What Cannot Be Power Washed?

What Can't Be Power Washed? The Ultimate Guide to Getting Your House Clean

If you’ve ever seen HGTV, you know that the power washing trend is a good one. It’s an excellent way to get your home looking like new again, no matter how old it is. Power washing is easy, fast, and affordable when compared to traditional cleaning methods. But what can’t be power washed?

What Can’t Be Power Washed?

The short answer is that just about everything can be power washed. However, there are some surfaces that can’t be power washed. If a surface is varnished or dyed (like a deck), you won’t be able to power wash it. There are also some surfaces that can’t be power washed without special attention. You can’t power wash synthetic turf, some types of shingles, or that new vinyl siding. You also need to be careful that you don’t power wash stone and certain concrete with high pressure as these materials are porous and can be worn away by the pressure of the water. These elements require a “soft wash”.

Exterior Surfaces That Can’t be Power Washed

– Synthetic Turf – Power washing synthetic turf is a bad idea. The high pressure of the water will break down the turf and cause it to become matted. This will make the turf look dirty and worn. – Shingles – Some types of shingles can’t be power washed because they are made from materials that will break down when they come into contact with water. While these shingles are intended to be water proof they aren’t intended to be water resistant. If you power wash these shingles you run the risk of losing some of them. – Vinyl Siding – New vinyl siding is not intended to be power washed. The high pressure of the water can cause damage to the siding. Wear and tear may appear in the siding, causing bubbles and other marks to appear. 

Interior Surfaces That Can’t be Power Washed

– Wood Paneling – Wood paneling is not designed to withstand water damage. Water can seep through the wood, causing it to warp and become brittle. You can also end up with mold or mildew forming on the wood. – Wood Floors – Wood floors can be damaged by water, especially if the water is saturated. If you power wash a wooden floor you run the risk of causing water damage. Once water damage has occurred, it is difficult to repair. – Wallpaper – To get wallpaper clean, you need to use a special cleaning agent. Special agents are designed to break down the starches used in wallpaper paste. This allows you to scrub the wallpaper clean. Wallpaper is not designed to withstand water. Wallpaper is porous and will not repel water. The high pressure of the water may cause the wallpaper to peel away from the wall.

Tips for a Successful Power Wash

– Use a good pressure washer or hire a pressure washing service. You’ll need a pressure washer with at least 2,000 PSI. If you go with a cheaper model, you’ll see that your results are less than stellar. You can find many good models for about $200-$300. – Use the right soap for what you’re cleaning. You should use a soap with some cleaning properties for the materials you’re cleaning. If you don’t use soap, you risk damaging the surface. – Clean your equipment before you start. Make sure your pressure washer is free of debris before you use it. Make sure there are no leaves or other debris in the pump and the water supply. – Don’t power wash at night. The sound and light of the power washer can be disconcerting for your neighbors. If you have to power wash at night, make sure you’re using a quieter model.


Power washing is the best way to get a house clean. It’s fast, efficient, and cheap. There are few surfaces that can’t be power washed. However, there are a few that need special attention. Make sure you are careful where you direct the water and are wearing the right safety gear before you start.

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