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Monthly Archives: February 2021

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Soft Washing 101


You can find educational material, like books for dummies, on most every topic. When it comes to home services it is usually learn-as-you go or hindsight is twenty-twenty. Particularly services not performed on a routine basis, or that may be new to you, can be hard to manage expectations. Since soft washing is a very different procedure than traditional pressure washing, these frequently asked questions have been collected to address common concerns and equip you to hire with confidence.

Q-What is soft washing?

A-Soft washing is the alternative to pressure washing using water-based, biodegradable solutions that emulsify dirt and grime. Soft washing dissolves cobwebs and kills mold, bacteria, and algae while sanitizing the surfaces cleaned. It uses one-third the water of pressure washing and last four-to-six times longer.

Q-When should I have it done?

A-Spring and summer are the most popular times to soft wash pool decks, stone and siding. However, any sunny day will do. The process can be done on colder or cloudy days but may require more applications or longer dwell times. Roofs are recommended during fall or sunny winter days.

Q -Are plants affected?

A Possibly; however, a trained professional will take precautions to help prevent this occurrence. The chances of this happening are greatly reduced by watering before, during, and after the process. When the work is completed, a plant wash solution should be applied that contains Gypsum. This neutralizes the effects of sodium hypochlorite and gives the plants a good feeding. In some instances, plants can be covered. However, this does create a greenhouse effect, so it is only done in ideal circumstances. If plants are directly in the drip line of the roof where no rain gutters are present these are the most likely to defoliate or turn brown. This condition, though unsightly, is most often temporary. Ninety percent of the affected plants usually recover within ninety days. Seek a reputable company who will cover their replacement if necessary.

Q – Will my paint chip or change color?

A The stream of solution applied is lighter than the stream from a garden hose. However, while having your roof or home cleaned you could experience some paint flaking. This is a result of poor surface preparation before painting or normal deterioration from weather exposure. Another rare condition is a change of paint pigment on the painted surface. Paint colors of brown and blue are most susceptible to turning green. Due to this potential problem, a small colorfast test on your paint should be done before cleaning.

Q – How are driveways cleaned?

A When soft washing driveways and walkways, it is imperative to leave solution applied and not rinse to achieve a one-hundred percent kill-rate. This process takes a few rain showers, which reactivate solution, to achieve desired results. Allowing for this process will keep your driveway clean four-to six times longer than pressure washing.

Q – Are brass fixtures an issue?

A To prevent damage, all brass fixtures should be covered and rinsed thoroughly (if sprayed). Soft washing solutions will not react adversely if the brass has been properly maintained. Brass that is already tarnished, will turn green in some areas.

Q – Is it safe to clean my roof?

AAbsolutely! Soft washing is the best solution for cleaning asphalt shingles, terra cotta, slate, and stone. Professionals will dilute, divert, and decontaminate any runoff from the roof. Normally everything can be reached from the edge of the roof. However, walking the roof to access hard-to-reach areas like a chimney may be necessary. In this case, make sure who you hire has safety harnesses, ropes, and lanyards to reduce your liability. Though not required in Texas, worker’s comp further protects you from a home insurance claim if someone is injured on your property.

QWill my windows be left with water spots?

A Most professionals will include cleaning windows affected by soft washing which alleviates water spots. However, it does not usually include hardwater removal. This is a pre-existing condition caused by sprinklers, pool sweeps, or A/C drip lines, and would involve window restoration and is priced separately.

QWill water leak inside through my doors and windows?

ANot always, but it is possible if the weather stripping is worn or missing. It is recommended to place old towels in front of doors and windows while soft washing is in process.   

QWill it be safe to swim in the pool afterwards?

A It is recommended to wait twenty-four hours; however, a professional cleaning should be completed first for proper shocking and inspection. The sodium hypochlorite used for soft washing is the same ingredient in pool cleaners, it is just a matter of checking the pH and chlorine range in your pool before swimming.

RO technology is reverse osmosis water that is filtered through a five-stage process. This process removes all total dissolved solids and chlorine that cause water to spot or dry hard because of minerals. Since the water is pure, it acts as a cleaning agent itself. Water loves minerals so when we remove those minerals, it wants them back. We refer to it as thirsty water. So ask yourself, what is in soil? Minerals. Now you have water that wants minerals. So we use this RO water to adsorb the soil on a window or floor surfaces. This RO water is incorporated into the majority of the services we provide.