Your vinyl siding is looking a little bit dirty. Your neighbors are giving you the side eye, and no less than three different neighborhood handymen have left a card taped to your mailbox.
Get the hint? You need to clean your siding. You want to, but the thought of scrubbing all that siding makes your head (and your shoulder) hurt. Is it possible to clean your siding without scrubbing or are you doomed to shelling out your cash for one of those handymen?
We’ve got a few methods to make cleaning your vinyl siding easier; no scrubbing required. Let’s take a look.
Before You Start
You can always pressure wash your vinyl siding, and for many of you, this is the most viable option. A pressure washer can remove grime quickly and efficiently.
If you don’t have a pressure washer, you aren’t relegated to tons of money spent on renting one. There are some other no scrub methods for getting your siding clean.
Make sure not to use any abrasive cleaners on your vinyl. You risk ruining the finish of the siding and causing more damage.
If you need to remove a stain that won’t come off with other methods, you can use a paste of baking soda and water to remove it gently. Otherwise, stick to regular cleaning with other solutions.
Use the widest setting on the pressure washer and begin at the bottom. Move the nozzle constantly. Don’t focus too long on one spot or you risk forcing water underneath your siding.
Move from the bottom to the top, sweeping the nozzle in the direction of the siding and move upward. Repeat to clean the dirty water from your siding by going from the top down. When you’re done, you can target any stubborn spots with a rag.
Basic Cleaning – Light Mold And Mildew
If it hasn’t been that long since you’ve cleaned your siding, white vinegar can be one of the most natural ways to clean. Vinegar can kill plants, so make sure you cover any special ones before you begin.
- white vinegar
- rubber gloves
- Mix white vinegar and water using three parts vinegar to seven parts water.
- Pour the mixture slowly over the sections of the siding you’d like to clean and allow it to sit for about 20 minutes.
- Spray the vinegar sections using the strongest flow of your garden hose. Allow to dry in full sun if at all possible.
Basic Cleaning – Stubborn Stains
If it’s been a while since you’ve cleaned your siding, you may have some stubborn stains. Again, be sure to wear gloves and to protect any plants that may come in contact with the bleach solution.
- 1/3 cup laundry detergent
- 2/3 cup powdered household cleaner
- 1 gallon of household bleach
- 1 gallon of water
- garden sprayer
- Mix the ingredients and add to your garden sprayer.
- Spray the area thoroughly using the strongest spray setting.
- Allow it to sit for a few minutes and rinse it off with plain water from your hose.
- For really stubborn stains, you may have to repeat the process a few times until the siding is clean.
Scrubbing Bubbles – For Smaller Areas Or Tough Stains
One type of secret weapon for small sections of vinyl giving you problems is right under your sink. Scrubbing bubbles can help remove hard water scale and grime from trouble areas with no scrubbing.
- scrubbing bubbles cleaner
- Read the directions carefully and apply.
- Wait the appropriate amount of time for the product to foam up and gently lift dirt and grime.
- Rinse off with water. We like to use our strongest garden hose setting to really get the grime off.
- Repeat on any tough stains.
Here you can choose the best vinyl siding cleaner
Maintaining Your Siding
As much as you don’t like to do it, regular cleaning can help you keep stains at bay. Vinyl siding is naturally mold and mildew resistant, but grime that gathers on the siding can attract mold and mildew growth. Removing the dirt regularly helps reduce stains altogether.
Cut back shrubs and tree branches to allow sunlight to filter to your siding. Sunlight also helps reduce mold and mildew growth and dry out grime so that it washes off more easily with your cleaning solutions.
Regular maintenance of your siding can go a long way to keeping it looking clean. It’s always easier to clean something if you do a little at a time rather than waiting until it’s a crisis. Section out different parts of the house and clean each, rotating around so that no section goes too long without a thorough clean.
If you’ve waited too long, that’s ok too. You may not have to scrub if you use our methods above and you might not even need to rent a pressure washer at all. Just add cleaning to your periodic household schedule, and you won’t ever have to avoid your neighbor’s side eye ever again.
Be honest. How often do you make time to clean your siding? And how do you avoid your neighbor’s dirty looks without seeming rude? Give us your best tips in the comments below.