Cleaning Your Vinyl Siding in the Winter: A Surprisingly Good Idea

When people think about cleaning their home exteriors they tend to leave those thoughts for spring. But did you know cleaning your vinyl siding in the winter is actually a good idea? It may seem like a hassle to do anything outside, let alone clean your siding, but when the temperatures are tolerable, why not get a head start on some spring cleaning?

Vinyl siding has grown to be one of the most popular cladding materials used in North America, so it’s important that homeowners know how to keep it clean! Cleaning your siding in the winter gives you a leg up on spring cleaning, saving you time when you’d rather be enjoying the warm weather. If you can handle being outdoors around zero degrees, you’ll ensure your siding stays beautiful and shiny all year round.

Cleaning your vinyl siding is a fairly easy job, which makes winter cleaning a breeze. Here are 3 steps to take to ensure you’re cleaning your vinyl siding right this winter.

The Right Tools

If you’ve decided to clean your vinyl siding in the winter, you’ll need the right supplies. Fill up a bucket with three parts water and one part laundry detergent. You can also use a 70% water and 30% vinegar solution.

Either of these mixtures will help remove mold and mildew, but if you need something a little stronger, mix one-third cup powdered laundry detergent, two-thirds cup powdered household cleaner, one quart liquid laundry bleach and one gallon water.

Use a long-handled soft bristle brush to give your siding a good clean! Some people prefer to use a pressure washer, but some manufacturers advise against it or recommend using a limited amount of pressure. It’s always best to check what your manufacturer or installation contractor recommends.

Proper Technique

In order to prevent streaks and stains when you’re cleaning your siding, start at the bottom and work your way up. If you’re worried about any stone or brick near the siding, you can cover it up to prevent damage.

If you’re using a pressure washer, make sure the stream is at eye level and pointed straight at the siding or downward, rather than on an upward slant. This will ensure you don’t send water behind the siding, causing damage.

And keep in mind, you should use caution around any window or door openings if you decide to use a pressure washer.

What to Avoid

If you want your siding cleaning to go as smoothly as possible, avoid cleaners that contain organic solvents, chlorine bleach, nail polish remover or furniture polish. Any of these cleaners can cause damage to your siding.

And stick to a soft bristle brush. Any highly abrasive scrubbers can cause damage when you’re cleaning.

The End Results

With regular upkeep and a little bit of effort, you can have beautiful siding year round. Don’t wait until spring, get a head start by cleaning your siding this winter!