How much pressure are we using when pressure washing exterior surfaces? Really, it depends on the surface itself. The pressure output of our power washing machines is measured in pounds per square inch (PSI), with greater values signifying greater pressure. Instead of wondering how to choose the correct PSI for power washing, here is a guide to selecting the correct PSI for an exterior power washing.
Soft Wash (~500 PSI)
For the most delicate surfaces of a home, like an unfinished deck, composite siding or fence, we always use very low pressures and implement what is referred to as the “Soft Wash” technique. Using such low pressures on your own can actually be quite tricky. Of course, it’s highly unlikely that you will damage your property at such low pressures. However, the secret to soft washing lies in the chemistry of detergents. For every stain on a surface, whether it’s mold, mildew, clay, rust, etc., there is a detergent to help break down and lift that stain. If you are inexperienced in power washing, you may have trouble selecting the perfect combination of cleaning solutions that remain effective even at ultra-low pressure.
Light Duty (1200-1900 PSI)
We generally don’t recommend power washing bikes or vehicles, but if you decide to do so, you’ll likely want to choose a pressure within this PSI range to avoid causing potentially irreversible damage. This is also an appropriate pressure for more delicate features of your home such as your lawn furniture.
Medium Duty (2000-2600 PSI)
If you are in the market for a pressure washer of your own, you probably won’t need to exceed this medium range for your maximum pressure. 2600 PSI should give you all the pressure you need to effectively and efficiently clean most exterior areas of your home.
Heavy Duty 2700 PSI+
Our pressure washers can be ramped up past 4000 PSI, but we can’t recommend using such pressures unless you are a trained professional. Usually, we only venture that high ourselves when cleaning industrial equipment or stripping graffiti off surfaces.
When doing any pressure washing yourself, be sure to check the warranty of the item you plan to clean. Many home exterior features, such as decks, cannot withstand ultra-high pressures, and exceeding the correct PSI could potentially void their warranty.
Clean Your Exterior Using the Correct PSI with the Experts at Peak Power Wash
Now that you know how to choose the correct PSI for power washing, we would suggest hiring a professional. Peak Power Wash provides experienced home power washing and pressure washing to the greater Carroll County, Howard County and Baltimore County areas. We are proud to help homeowners give their homes, decks and patios extra TLC without doing damage to any of their property. To learn more about our services, call us today at (443) 686-WASH or visit our website.