If you have vinyl siding, it can become dirty or covered with mold or mildew, leaving your house looking less than desirable. If you don't have access to a pressure washer or you simply don't want to deal with renting one or hiring a professional to clean your siding, you can create your own cleaning solutions that work just as well and are more affordable. Here are some options that you can try on your own to help get your vinyl siding clean and looking as good as new.
Bleach is an effective germ killer and an excellent mold and mildew remover. You will need to make a mixture that includes a third cup of powdered laundry detergent, two-thirds of a cup of powdered household cleaner, 1 full quart of liquid bleach, and one gallon of water. Mix these ingredients thoroughly until all of the powdered ingredients are dissolved. You never want to apply bleach alone directly to your siding since it can take out some of the color or eat away at the vinyl.
Once you've made the mixture, use your hose and a garden sprayer and apply it directly to the siding. Use sweeping motions and apply it to one section at a time. Be sure you wear safety goggles and a mask so you don't breathe in the bleach, and ensure that all pets and children are safely away from the work area. If you have plants nearby, cover them with a tarp before applying the solution. Let it sit for a few minutes to allow the chemicals to work, and then rinse it clean with plain water.
Vinegar can be used in all kinds of cleaning applications, and vinyl siding is no exception. Unlike the bleach solution, you'll need to apply this mixture of 70/30 parts water and vinegar by hand. A good rule of thumb is to use about seven cups of warm water to three cups of vinegar for the mixture. Make sure your plants are protected since vinegar can kill plants just as easily as bleach.
Use a heavy duty scrubbing brush, and dip it into the mixture. Scrub your siding in sections, applying a good amount of pressure as you go. Be sure to wear protective gloves while you scrub, and start from the top and work your way down. As you go, the vinegar and water mixture will run down the siding, helping to remove excess mold and dirt. You can also use a supplemental mixture of baking soda and water to create a paste that can help you remove more stubborn stains, and apply it to the scrub brush to get out tougher areas.
Both of these methods for cleaning your vinyl siding are safe and cost effective and should help make your home's exterior look great. If your siding is aging, consider an upgrade to new siding by Ecolife Home Improvement.