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  • Writer's pictureBaylee Modugno

FAQ's on the Power Washing Process

Long Island is well-known for its amazing neighborhoods and commercial districts. Home and business owners in Suffolk County and Nassau County understand the importance of maintaining their outdoor spaces to promote healthy, long-lasting structures and a sense of pride as residents of New York. Power washing is one way you can do both. It removes a wide variety of substances, such as algae, dirt, mildew, mold, and toxic particles, that cause structures to look dirty and old over time. Pressurized water is perfect for blasting away grime from any type of surface, including exterior walls, siding, gutters, roofs, flashing, fixtures, windows, shutters, doors, stairs, sidewalks, driveways, decks, patios, bars, kitchens, pools, furniture, gazebos, sculptures, and fountains. You can also use this cleaning process to clean any material ranging from hard, porous concrete and brick to soft vinyl and painted wood. Before you make a decision about your next outdoor Long Island pressure washing project, review the following list of frequently asked questions:

What Is Power Washing?

In general, the term refers to using pressurized water from power washing equipment to forcibly dislodge dirty substances from surfaces. It also refers to the use of a specific type of power washer that sprays hot water instead of cold at sanitation temperature levels. When you started your search for Long Island power washing services, you might have also found "pressure washing" used as an alternative description. Although this term is the same in general, pressure washing describes the use of pressurized cold water with or without a cleaning solution.

What Is Soft vs. Hard Cleaning?

Some surfaces require a gentle touch of force that's lower than standard pressurized washing but still higher than the pressure that comes out of a green retail hose used to water a garden. Soft washing offers antimicrobial, antifungal, and plant-killing benefits. Pressure settings for soft washing normally range between 60 and 500 psi. The term hard washing or cleaning doesn't actually exist. Any cleaning that involves a psi on average of 500 psi or higher with cold water is considered standard pressure washing.

What Do the Measurements Mean?

You only need to know three measurements to make informed decisions about using this process for outdoor cleaning with pressure washing: 1. The most common measurement, psi, refers to "pounds per square inch," which is the amount of pressure exerted across a square inch of the surface while cleaning the surface. You may also hear it referred to as "pound-force per square inch." 2. Another common measurement, GPM, refers to "gallons per minute." Instead of speaking about force, this measurement refers to water flow or the flushing of a surface area with water. A pressure washer with a high GPM rating cleans a larger surface area within a minute than one with a lower GPM rating because it flushes the area with more water. 3. The third measurement, degree, refers to a nozzle's spray angle. Water flows out of the tip of a nozzle in a V spray pattern. With different nozzles, the V-shaped spray widens into angles that you can find on a protractor.

Why Are There Different Nozzle Colors?

A small angle spray nozzle cleans a narrow surface area with extremely high force. A wide-angle spreads the water out more, which cleans a larger area with less force. The colors serve as a warning system. Consider the following: - A 0-degree angle, the most narrow surface area spray, comes out of a nozzle with the most force, which is why it's a red color. It's best used for spot and distance cleaning of unpainted hard surfaces that the pressure can't damage, such as asphalt, concrete, and certain hard metals. - A 15-degree yellow nozzle still applies an intense spray to surfaces, which makes it great for unpainted hard surfaces that have stains, but the water pressure/force isn't as strong as the red nozzle and covers a slightly wider surface area. It's commonly used on asphalt, brick, and concrete. It's also great for removing rust or another mineral buildup, old paint, and tough mildew from surfaces for maintenance and renovation projects. - A 25-degree green nozzle applies a medium force spray to surfaces for general cleaning. You can use it on a wide range of outdoor surfaces, including aluminum, hard plastics, and wood. It's also commonly used to spray away leaves and dirt from decks, patios, and walkways. - A 40-degree white nozzle applies a gentle amount of pressure for cleaning painted and delicate surfaces, including softer plastics like vinyl, painted wood, and even glass in windows and doors. - A 65-degree black nozzle uses the lowest amount of pressure and works best for extremely delicate or soft surfaces. It's also used in cleaning solution applications. Exceptions: Nozzles also exist that allow users to switch to any of the above degree settings in an all-in-one design. You can also find rotating or rotary nozzles that don't match the above color descriptions. These nozzles spray in a rotational pattern so that the power washer applies water to larger surface areas at higher pressures. For example, a 0-degree rotating nozzle for use only on hard surfaces can spray water over an area similar to a 15- or 25-degree nozzle.

What Is Chemical Injection?

With a 65-degree black or all-in-one nozzle, a power washer user can dispense cleaning solutions to surfaces with ease. The term chemical injection refers to how the cleaner is dispensed into the pressurized water. A special washer part known as an "injector" injects the cleaning solution into the pressurized water before or after the water enters the water pump. The black nozzle works best for this type of task because any higher pressure can prevent the cleaning solution from adhering to surfaces long enough to chemically break down grime before a final rinse.

Doesn't This Process Damage Surface?

As already noted, the impact of the spray when cleaning with pressure washing depends on the water force, spray surface area coverage, the surface material, and the amount of grime. The spray from a high angle nozzle is gentle enough to clean not only glass but also painted or stained, roll-up porch shades made with thin reed slats and the leaves of plants. The highly pressurized water sprayed from the lowest angle nozzle can act as a saw or drill and cut through many types of materials. It's important to note that potential damage can go beyond exterior structural surfaces. An inexperienced power washer user can unintentionally cut through the flesh, sever the blood vessels and nerves and even break the bones in their own body or the body of another person or pet.

Why Should I Hire a Professional?

You might have thought recently that you can perform any Long Island power washing tasks at your home or business on your own. Maybe you told yourself that you can save time and money by renting or buying equipment. If so, think again. Hiring a professional is cheaper in terms of time and money than any other option. To work as fast as possible and prevent accidental damage or injury, you need to have extensive experience with handling this type of equipment. You need to know the right psi and GPM levels to use and the nozzle spray angles. Your inexperience can cost you thousands of dollars in damages above the few hundred dollars that most professionals charge. A power washer firm also guarantees their work. They're backed by insurance that can cover any damage so that you're not footing an extra bill. They also provide free inspections and estimates.

How Far Apart Can I Space Cleanings?

When you clean depends on a variety of factors, including the local weather, season, location, and preferences. For example, you should clean more often when dealing with a lot of dry weather during summer that allows dust particles in the air to build upon surfaces. The same is true if you live near a major highway or road that has a lot of traffic that can cause a buildup of road dust and exhaust particles. You should also clean exterior surfaces after a long period of wet weather to prevent the growth of algae, lichen, mold, and moss. If your windows or siding look dirty or you're planning a big indoor or outdoor event like an anniversary or holiday party, then it's definitely time to clean. Lastly, you should consider the color of surfaces and pressure wash when wood or composite turns entirely gray or black from mildew and mold or displays leaf silhouettes and black spots from tannin stains.

How Long Does This Process Take?

A non-professional who decides to use a rented or newly purchased power washer can take days to clean exterior surfaces because they're too inexperienced to work efficiently and quickly. The size of the structure and the extent of the outside surfaces are also factors. A mobile home obviously represents an easier and faster job than a mansion. Additional structures, such as a gazebo, kitchen, pool, garage or shed, add more time to the cleaning schedule unless you only need to clean one of these structures standalone. For example, a professional might only need 20 to 30 minutes to clean a deck. A whole exterior home cleaning might take them two or more hours.

Long Island Pressure Cleaning Near Me

Our experienced team at Above All Pressure Cleaning goes above and beyond to improve the look and condition of New York residential and commercial properties throughout Suffolk County and Nassau County. We offer full-service, budget-friendly Long Island pressure washing services. Forget searching online for "pressure cleaning near me." For more information or to schedule an on-site evaluation, call our considerate and knowledgeable pressure cleaning specialists today.

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