DIY Pressure Washing in Edmonton

The Dos and Don’ts of DIY Pressure Washing in Edmonton

Pressure washing has become a popular option for restoring the sheen of various surfaces around homes and businesses in Edmonton. With its ability to blast away dirt, grime, and stains, pressure washing can make a significant difference in the appearance of your property. 

DIY Pressure Washing Explained

Pressure washing explained, is the technique of using a highly pressurized water stream to remove dirt, debris, and other materials from surfaces. The water is sourced from a regular exterior water source such as a hose.  Before you plunge into a DIY pressure washing adventure, remember that pressure washing can be difficult and dangerous if you are inexperienced.  It is important to know the dos and don’ts to ensure safety, effectiveness, and the best possible outcome.  Again, if you are considering taking on this task, bear in mind that it is cost-effective to rent a pressure washer and get the equipment you need.


1. Do Choose the Right Equipment: Power Washer Rental Considerations

Before you dive into pressure washing, it is essential to choose the right equipment for the job.  Before you buy or rent any supplies, you should understand the requirements of your specific project.  If it is a one-time project, it might be more worthwhile to rent a power washer.   Edmonton offers various rental options that cater to different needs. Go in for a power washer that has adjustable pressure settings, as this will allow you to tailor the pressure to different surfaces and cleaning tasks.  Make sure that you do not end up with the wrong type of pressure washing nozzles or solutions that end up being wrong for the job at hand.

2. Do Prepare the Area 

Ensure you have an adequate water supply before you get to work First, check out the water flow from your hose by timing how long it takes to fill a five-gallon bucket.   Once you have determined that you have sufficient water flow to feed your pressure washer, clean out its inlet filter.  Turn off electrical outlets outdoors and avoid the use of ladders. Check that the connections are secure wherever the tool attaches to a hose or accessory.  

3. Do Prioritize Safety: Protect Yourself and Surroundings

Safety should be your top priority. Before you start, wear appropriate protective gear, including safety goggles, closed-toe shoes and ear protection.  Save yourself and your property from harm by starting on the lowest pressure and gripping the wand tightly to avoid recoil when the pressure kicks in.   Pressure washers expel a powerful stream of water that can easily damage surfaces or cause injury if not used carefully.   Always aim the nozzle away from people, pets etc. 

4. Do the Test on a Small Area First

Before you tackle larger areas, test the pressure washer on a small, inconspicuous area to get a feel for how it operates and how much pressure you should use. This will help you avoid accidentally damaging surfaces or using too much force.

5. Do Keep a Safe Distance

Maintain a safe distance between the pressure washer nozzle and the surface you are cleaning. Always hold it at the distance recommended in your user manual.   Generally, a distance of around 2 feet is recommended. Being too close can cause damage, while being too far might not effectively clean the surface.  Avoid blasting directly into corners, beneath the lip of a window, or into dryer and attic vents.

6. Do Use the Proper Technique

Hold the pressure washer nozzle at a slight angle to the surface, rather than directly aiming it straight on. This helps prevent water from getting under the surface and causing damage. Move the nozzle in a sweeping motion to ensure even cleaning. This way you will not be concentrating the tool’s power on one place for too long.  

In case of stubborn stains requiring maximum cleaning power, keep the pressure washer’s nozzle perpendicular to the grimy surface. Caked-on dirt and grime come off easily if you first soak the surface (with or without detergent) and let it rest for a few minutes. When using detergent, wet from the bottom up, using sweeping horizontal strokes to prevent streaks caused by runoff. To rinse, do the opposite, working from the top down. 


1. Don’t Use Excessive Pressure

It might be tempting to crank up the pressure to tackle stubborn stains.  However different surfaces need varying levels of pressure and techniques to clean effectively.  Using too much pressure on delicate surfaces like wood, siding, or roofing can lead to irreversible damage, including cracks, splintering, and water intrusion.  High pressure can also strip away paint, dent wood, and etch concrete. Start with lower pressure and increase gradually if needed.

2. Don’t Skip Reading the Manual

Each pressure washer model might have its own specific instructions and features. Ignoring the manual instructions may lead to misunderstandings about how the equipment works, potentially leading to accidents or inefficient usage.

Go through the instructions carefully before assembling the pressure washer. This will guide you as to how the spray wand should be attached, where to put the hose, the appropriate angle for pressure washing and other important details.

3. Don’t Neglect Safety Precautions

Pressure washers are powerful tools that can cause harm if not used in the right manner.    Make sure that electric pressure washers are properly connected and grounded at all times.  Mind electrical hazards – Be cautious around electrical outlets and connections to prevent electrical shocks.   Beware of shock hazards around the house, and make sure that you are wearing rubber-soled shoes for extra protection. Take care not to point the nozzle at people, animals, or fragile objects.

4. Don’t Use the Wrong Nozzle

Pressure washers usually come with a variety of nozzles for different pressure levels. Using the wrong nozzle can result in uneven cleaning or damage. Always choose the nozzle appropriate for the task at hand.  Pivot nozzles and adjustable nozzles give you flexibility in your angle to target harder-to-reach areas with ease.

5. Don’t Pressure Wash Certain Surfaces

Bear in mind that not all surfaces are suitable for pressure washing, particularly if they already show signs of wear and tear. Avoid using a pressure washer on delicate surfaces like shingles, windows, and certain types of siding. Additionally, exercise caution when pressure washing painted surfaces, as high pressure can peel off paint. For example, while most automobile paint jobs can withstand strong spray, a thin clear coat or scratched exterior should be cleaned using lower water pressure. 

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DIY pressure washing can be a worthwhile endeavour since it transforms the appearance of your property. Edmonton residents thinking of going in for this task can consider a power washer rental to access the necessary equipment. By following the dos and don’ts of pressure washing, you can ensure an effective, safe and satisfying cleaning experience. Remember, when in doubt, it is always a good idea to consult professionals with pressure washing experience to get advice and guidance tailored to your specific needs.

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