Wood siding needs proper care to achieve its full life, and part of this care involves repainting when your siding needs it. However, many homeowners think that their siding needs to be repainted when all it really needs is a thorough cleaning to rejuvenate its beauty. Here are some tips on Cleaning Wood Siding.
Pick Your Time
Ideally, you should plan to give your wood siding a thorough cleaning at least once a year. If you will be working alone, you might not be able to complete the cleaning in one day, so check the weather forecast to ensure that you will not be working during unfavorable conditions. Choose a time during the spring or fall when temperatures are neither too hot nor too cold and no rain is expected.
Prepare Your Tools
Make sure that you have everything that you will need before cleaning day arrives. Purchase some trisodium phosphate, also known as TSP, at your local grocery store, home improvement center or hardware store. You will also need a soft-bristled brush that can be attached to a long handle, a pail capable of holding at least a gallon of water and a garden hose. You may also need some plastic sheeting to protect sensitive foundation plantings, caulking, a safe ladder if you have a two-story house and a bottle of bleach to deal with any mold or mildew you might encounter.
Prepare to Clean
Make sure that all windows are tightly closed. Spread plastic sheeting over any plants that you want to protect. Prepare your cleaning solution by mixing a gallon of water with a half of a cup of TSP. Inspect the siding for any caulking that has shrunk or cracked; apply new caulking before cleaning. If you have cracks in the siding or peeling, chipped paint, complete those repairs before cleaning. Keep in mind that it requires a great deal of expertise to replace damaged boards; unless you are highly skilled, you should call a reputable, experienced professional to handle this task.
Spray and Scrub
Work a 10-foot section at a time. Use your garden hose to spray the section. Wet the brush in your cleaning solution and scrub the siding to remove the grime, working from the bottom up and rinsing frequently. As you work, look for any areas that need new caulking or that have mildew or mold. If you must use a ladder, make sure that you place it so that the legs rest on stable, even ground and exercise caution at all times to avoid falls.
Finish the Maintenance
After you are through scrubbing, go back to the areas where you noticed mildew or mold. If the mildew or mold was not removed by the scrubbing, add a cup of bleach to four cups of water and dab on the area. Be sure to wear gloves and eye protection when working with bleach. Rinse thoroughly; if the stain persists, apply the bleach mixture and scrub with the brush. Always rinse thoroughly after you are through.
Ask for Help
In Austin, residential roofing is a service provided by Alpha Roofing Industries. Not only in Austin, but to a wide range of services to homeowners throughout Central Texas. Alpha Roofing installs and repairs wood siding, as well as fiber cement siding, skylights, metal roofs and asphalt shingles. We also offer moss and debris removal, chimney repairs and many other services. Our dedicated crews deliver quality work and superior customer service on every job. If you would like a free estimate, call (512) 777-1086 or submit our handy online form.
We are the Austin Roofing Contractors you can trust!
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