Top Tips for Pressure Washing Your Driveway

Pressure washing is by far the best method for cleaning your driveway from dirt, dust, moss, and various build-ups while keeping it simple.

The conservative methods, such as using a broom or a brush, will still get the job done, but it will take a lot more time and effort.

A pressure washer minimizes that effort with its power and precision, making it an excellent investment for your around-the-house duties.

Although it’s relatively easy to use a pressure washer, there are a couple of things to keep in mind before you start washing your driveway.

Safety first

If you don’t have much experience with a pressure washer, it’s very common to underestimate its capabilities.

They operate between 1900 and 3100 PSI (Pounds per square inch), and the more powerful ones can easily strip paint and graffiti.

That’s why wearing protective goggles is a must for anything that might fly back toward your face.

Apart from being very powerful, a pressure washer is an effective tool but loud (especially a gas pressure washer), so it would be advised to apply earplugs.

Finally, as you’ll be walking on a wet, slippery surface, you should put on footwear with a good grip.

In addition, you should always keep the hose two feet (60 cm) away from the surface to avoid damaging it.

Another thing you should do before starting is inspect the pressure washer for any malfunctions.

Make sure that everything is well-attached, if there are any clogs, one thing you could do first is check the fuel levels.

Prepare the turf

Like with any other chore, preparing the turf beforehand makes everything a lot easier, as you don’t unnecessarily interrupt the process.

A pressure washer is a powerful tool, and it can damage some softer materials that may be around your driveway. That’s why you should relocate any items in the cleaning path.

Firstly, you should move any larger objects (your car, bike, and decorations) that may get in the way or if they are in proximity of the washer’s range and can get damaged.

Next, protect the grass, doors, and windows with a plastic sheet, especially the parts that border with the concrete.

You can also do minor preparation cleaning for smaller debris to avoid spending excessive water with the pressure washer.

Examine your pressure washer’s features

As pressure washers can operate at different PSI, that difference can heavily influence the time it takes to clean your driveway.

Naturally, the more powerful ones will get it done quicker but with a higher risk of damaging the surface.

This variable can significantly impact the efficiency and speed of your cleaning tasks, especially when dealing with surfaces like driveways.

Hotsy of Houston understands these nuances and offers a range of hot pressure washers calibrated to meet various PSI requirements.

Depending on which pressure washer you use, there will be some differences in operating and attachments, so going through the manual and examining its features is always a good idea.

Use concrete detergent

The concrete detergent will significantly speed up the process and finish with better results than cleaning with only water.

Different detergent formulas are suited for different surfaces, so using one made strictly for concrete will make the job much easier.

Most modern pressure washers have a built-in detergent tank, but if you don’t have one, you can apply it manually before washing it down.

It’s highly recommended to spot-treat areas with more stubborn stains, such as oil or mud.

Choose the right nozzle

pressure nozzle

The nozzle will regulate the pressure of the pressure washer, so it’s essential to choose the right one for the job.

Although the attachments will vary, there are the six most common types: 0°, 15°, 25°, 40°, soap, and Turbo.

The smaller the degree of the nozzle, the stronger the pressure will get.

The bigger-degree angle nozzles are suited for softer materials, like wood, while the smaller degree (such as the 0° nozzle) is suited for spot-treating concrete or metal.

The 15° or 25° nozzle will be your best choice for cleaning your driveway.

Finish off with a sealant

A sealant is a substance used to protect concrete from dirt, dust, and, most importantly, water from penetrating concrete.

Using a sealant will add a protective layer that will preserve the concrete and help it last much longer. It will also make the next cleaning a lot easier, and on top of that, it will add a smooth finish.

You can apply the sealant with a roller but bear in mind that the sealant should be applied only when the concrete fully dries.

You should also avoid pulling up into the driveway with your car before it dries to the long-lasting effect of cleanliness.

It may take up to a day for the concrete to dry fully, but that can be a lot shorter depending on the weather.

In summary

A pressure washer is a very potent tool that can be used for various purposes and can provide exceptional results if handled correctly.

Safety comes first, so before starting it up, make sure you take all necessary precautions and read the instructions manual to leave no room for mistakes.

Make all the required preparations, set up your attachments, and follow these tips to leave your driveway spotless.

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