How to clean Vinyl Siding?

Vinyl siding is one of the most popular siding that has been around, it started being used in the 60’s, being the natural replacement for aluminium siding, which is easily dented and scratched.  Vinyl siding was also affordable and offered a wide range of colors and maintenance free…. Well almost maintenance free. Because it is exposed to the ever changing elements of the outdoors it will get very dirty.  Also if you are in a wet environment there is a good chance that mold and mildew will now be growing on the side of your house. and will have to be cleaned from time to time. But what is the best way to clean your dirty siding?

From our experience one of the best ways to clean your siding would be with a homemade solution of 30 percent vinegar and 70 percent water.  Mix the vinegar and water into a bucket and use a soft cloth or brush to wipe on to the walls to remove the dirt and grime. We also find that just plain old soap and water also does wonders!

Use a brush or soft cloth to clean the siding.

With your cleaning solution of choice mixed up in a couple gallon bucket, use a brush with a long handle to to rub the cleaning solution on the siding. Start from the bottom and work your way to the top gently rubbing the siding to remove the dirt.  Once the whole wall has been washed then use your garden hose and gently rinse off the wall from the top on down. 

Be careful not to use a lot of force when rinsing, because if you blow water behind your siding all the dust that has accumulated over the years will start coming out of the drain hole and you will have a lot of little lines of mud streaking down your siding.

What about the stubborn stains?

After years of weed whipping and grass cutting you are bound to have some very tough stains that seem almost impossible to remove.  The solution that we use for these is a 1 cup of oxygen bleach (Like oxyclean or oxo brite) to a gallon of water. The oxygen bleach formula is safe with your plants and landscape.

For this you will need some rubber gloves and a soft brush to rub the stain out …and a bunch of elbow grease! 

Same as before, start at the bottom and work your way up to the top and rinse on the way down.

If you want to use some other commercial products, we would recommend  Simple Green Oxy Solve House and Siding Cleaner. It is safe for your plants and grass around your house, just be sure to rinse your plants and grass off after you are done cleaning.  Simple green does a good job on those hard to remove stains. 

Pro Tip:  Never use paint thinner, nail polish remover, paint remover on vinyl siding. These chemicals may damage your siding.

Can I use a pressure washer to clean my siding?

Yes of course you can . Using a pressure washer is a great way to clean your siding in no time at all.  There are a few tips that you might want to use when using the pressure washer. Here is a few.

  • Use warm, soapy water if at all possible. If you can’t then just use cold water.
  • Start at the bottom and work your way to the top with soapy water.
  • Rinse on the way down. 
  • Be careful not to spray your soffit at the top.(With all the dust that accumulates in the soffit, if you get any water behind there it will leave mud stains for days…. Believe me!)
  • Always try to shoot downward if you can. Because if you shoot upwards, the water Will go up the siding drain holes and you will be washing dirt streaks for days.
  • Be cautious around your windows and doors as you do not want to get water behind the siding there either.

All in all using a pressure washer is a good choice for washing your siding if you follow these tips.

How to remove hard water stains or rust on vinyl siding.

If you water your lawn chances are the sprinkler keeps hitting the side of your house, then there is a good chance that you have to deal with the dreaded hard water stains. We have tried everything to get rid of it to no avail. I heard that a 10 to 1 mixture of chlorine bleach and water would work, but sadly it didn’t work well in our case.

But we did find a product that was simply amazing for the hard water stains.  It is The Works toilet bowl cleaner. Spray it on and let it sit for a couple of minutes then just wipe off, simple as that. The stuff is amazing.

Conclusion

Cleaning your siding can be done in a day and it will be very rewarding to look at what you accomplished after a hard day of work.