Quarve Contracting
Monday 12 May 2014

Washing Your MN Steel Siding

Posted by at 9:00 AM

Metal siding is one of the most durable products available for protecting your home.  But if that siding isn't properly cared for, corrosion or oxidation can happen.   Even though steel and other metal siding is very low maintenance, these products require periodic cleaning, just like anything a home may be sided with.  Dirt and debris ends up on the exterior of a home, and it needs to be removed.  Chemicals that are out there that claim to clean the siding can actually cause corrosion, so you want to make sure you clean your siding properly.  Every six months to a year it's a good idea to inspect and clean your metal siding. Here are some tips to make sure that your steel siding is looking its best and lasts a long time.  The best (and easiest) method is to use a pressure washer. Using a Pressure Washer to Clean Your Steel Siding Turn Off Your Outdoor Lighting:  You need to make sure that any electrical systems are properly turned off to ensure that nothing is going to shock you since you're going to be using high pressured water in order to clean off the sides of the home. Add Your Detergent:  You don't need expensive specialty cleaning chemicals; in fact most of them are too harsh.  Just mix 1/3 cup of laundry detergent to six gallons of water. This can clean the siding without a problem and is inexpensive. Fill up the power washer using the cleaning solution that you have mixed together. Scrub Your Siding Down:  Use a soft brush with a long handle to scrub the outside of the siding thoroughly. You should scrub in a horizontal manner and in a vertical one as well. This will help to loosen any grime and dirt that might be built up on the siding. Make a New Solution with Bleach to Remove Mold:  If you find mold on the sides of the home, you can mix up a bleach solution to kill it and remove it. Mix 1 part bleach in 3 parts water in a plastic spray bottle or pump action garden sprayer. Then spray the mold thoroughly. Use a step ladder if it is in a hard to reach area. Set Up the Power Washer:  Set the washer on the lowest setting and then use it to remove dirt and grime in the crevices and cracks throughout the siding. These areas are those that you could not reach using the brush. Do not use too much pressure; always use on low.  Unless you are very experienced in the use of a pressure washer, you can do damage to your home or your landscaping with a higher level of pressure. Rinse Your Cleaning Solution Off:  You can then use a standard garden hose to rinse the solution off of your siding. Make sure to rinse your detergent solution off thoroughly so it does not dry.  You can then let the rinse water dry off in the sun.
If you've never used a pressure washer before, we recommend that you first practice on an area you won't be able to damage, such as a driveway or cement sidewalk.  Pressure washers do a great job at getting dirt off, but you'll want to make sure you are familiar with the proper use of the equipment before turning the nozzle on your home.  Some simple tips are:  Keep your nozzle at least 6" away from the siding, and keep your wand in motion, using sweeping strokes. 
Here at Quarve, we are a Minneapolis St. Paul MN siding contractor that is able to provide you with more in-depth information on cleaning your siding, repairing your steel siding or even having new siding installed. We provide service to the entire Minneapolis and St. Paul metro area, including Stillwater MN 55082, Inver Grove Heights MN 55077, Vadnais Heights MN 55127, Edina MN 55424 and White Bear Lake MN 55110.