Protecting your exterior paint after the smoke clears

Created on:

September 12, 2020

2020 has brought unprecedented circumstances that have brought about many changes in our thinking, protection, and routines.  From Pandemic, Equal Rights, and now Forest Fires, 2020 has been unlike any other year in our lifetime.  At the time of writing this post 12% of Oregon residents have been evacuated from their homes due to fires.  With the current smoke in the air its hazardous to go outside for prolonged periods of time.  Those fortunate enough to escape this fire season with a home still standing will have survived the worst fire season on the west coast.  

When the fires are contained and the smoke clears homeowners and building owners will have a massive amount of clean-up to do.  The exterior walls of a home or building have now been standing there protecting the interior for days in heavy smoke and soot.  Without proper cleaning those new exterior paint jobs are likely to not last as long as you would have anticipated.  With dust, dirt, soot, and ash sitting on the surfaces of your exterior walls the wind will work its magic and begin abrading your paint and coatings protecting your exterior.  Homes painted with a higher sheen of paint like satin sheen will do better at repelling the air debris from settling.  If your home has a lot of blemishes or existing layers of paint it was more than likely painted with a flat sheen exterior paint.  Flat paint does a lot better hiding imperfections, but not as good with repelling dirt and debris in the air.  

Whether or not your home has been painted with flat or satin exterior paint in the last year or the last five years it will be a good idea to give your home a thorough washing after the smoke clears.  Follow the following steps to assure the exterior paint on your home lasts as long as you had expected.

Materials needed:  soap or Detergent to clean siding, high pressure hose nozzle or pressure washer, Hudson sprayer or soap attachment for pressure washer

·      Work on one side at a time

·      Lightly rinse all of the siding with a high pressure hose nozzle or misting tip through your  pressure washer

·      Start spraying water from top to bottom rinsing your siding

·      When complete with the side and assuring that the surfaces are still damp start applying a cleaning detergent (start from bottom to top)

·      If you have a soap attachment on your pressure washer this is best, if not use a Hudson sprayer to apply the soap.

·      If your home exterior seems very dirty you can use a soft bristle brush to scrub the siding clean after applying the soap (be careful of scrubbing to hard).

·      Don’t let the soap dry on your siding, if you find your home to be very dirty, just work in small increments or give us a call.

·      When you have applied the detergent to all sides now its time to wash the soap off.

·      You can use the same high pressure hose nozzle you used to rinse the house down or you can use a low pressure tip on your pressure washer.

·      Start washing/rinsing from top to bottom.

·      Once complete you are ready to move on to the other sides of your home.

Of course we are here to help with this, our typical cost of a pressure wash to clean surfaces is from $500 - $800 for a two story home in the Portland/Vancouver Metro area.  Give us a call or send us your request for a free estimate.