If you’re about to have family, friends, and neighbors over for summertime activities outdoors, the last thing you want is for them to arrive and see a dirty backyard that ruins their appetite for your BBQ. During the winter, a lot of dirt and dust can collect on your fence, leaving it looking less-than-stellar. Don’t worry, underneath all of that gray is still a fantastic fence! This kind of dingy look is easy fixable before your guests arrive. You need to pressure wash!
Rent a power washer that operates at 1,500 or 2,000 PSI and avoid more powerful 3,000 or 3,500 PSI, as this is too much power for wood. Be sure to get both 15- and 25-degree spray tips. Before you leave with the machine, have the rental people demonstrate the washer’s use. It’s an easy machine to run, but it’s also quite aggressive. The fierce spray will strip the wood as well as clean off the dirt and grime, but you can also erode the wood too deeply and ruin it if you use too much force. The key is to use the right sprayer tip and technique.
Before you start, clear the area along the fence by tying back plants that are growing alongside it. Wear water-repellent clothing, because you will probably get wet from the spray. It takes a little practice to get it exactly correct, but you’ll catch on fast!
Again, be careful with the amount of force you’re using to pressure wash with. Usually, 500-800 PSI is an acceptable range to start with. If you have more than a little bit of dirt to remove, 2000-3000 PSI can be used, as long as you stand further away from the fence to avoid damage. Stand three to four feet away from your vinyl fence, pointing the nozzle at the bottom of the fence and working your way up. If the grime isn’t budging, gradually walk closer to your fence and adjust the pressure as necessary.
After you are finished, rinse the cleaning solution off with fresh water. Remember, your fence will have residue if you let this sit for more than 15 minutes.
In just a matter of hours, your fence, and therefore your backyard, will be ready for your guests. Download our free checklist Your Essential Backyard Summer Checklist: 6 Things You Need to Do to Make the Most of the Warm Months to find out more about what you can do to get your backyard in top shape for the summer with the help of Central Fence.