A property’s facade attracts the eye first, and with summer arriving soon, it’s a great time to give it a good clean. Not only will you keep your cladding looking neat, but you’ll also help it last longer. Use today’s checklist to ensure your home makes a great first impression.
Time: 5 hours
Difficulty level: High
1. You’ll need a ladder to reach higher areas.
2. Get some dish gloves, a bucket of water, a cleaning product and a rag.
Vinyl and aluminium
Use a multipurpose cleaner or even dish soap. The important thing is to clean gently, using a non-scratch fabric.
Soap is not useful for this type of cladding or siding. It’s better to use water and apply a new coat of varnish when the wood starts to turn grey or whiten.
Wood fibre (CanExel)
Use gentle soap for this type of cladding. And it’s important to choose a soft cloth or other cleaning tool that won’t damage the boards. Add soap (NOT dish soap) into a large bucket of water and scrub the siding. Then, rinse with fresh water.
Brick and stone
There are several ways to clean brick and stone because there are different types of dirt that can accumulate on them. Diluted bleach is an excellent option for removing mould. Use a brush with natural or synthetic fibres (NOT metal), scrub the bricks and then rinse.
To remove regular dirt and stains, you can use something less chemically harsh that you make yourself: simply dilute baking soda or white vinegar in water.
Acrylic doesn’t require a different approach than other types of cladding. Just use a gentle soap and a soft brush to keep it looking new. However, it may be necessary to use a little bleach if you need to remove any mould. Alternatively, there are products designed especially for acrylic siding.
Fibre cement can be cleaned with a pressure washer; however, this is a riskier and less environmentally sound approach. It’s better to use a product specially designed for fibre cement. Scrub with a soft-bristled brush and then rinse with fresh water. You can also substitute dish soap for products sold in stores.
NB: Most types of exterior cladding can be cleaned with a pressure washer if you use it on a low intensity. It’s also a good idea to test it on a small section of the cladding first to make sure the water jet doesn't damage it. That said, cleaning by hand is much more environmentally sound, especially if you use a homemade product or gentle, biodegradable soap.
Photo: Adobe Stock/Vipada