For many people, it can be satisfying after cleaning their concrete driveways and walkways. Such an activity can be time consuming, but the results are always great. To help speed up the process, you might consider opting for power washing the concrete. What most people might be worried about is if the power washing activity might damage concrete.
Well, the quick answer to your concerns is yes. If you do not clean concrete the correct way, then you are likely to degrade the concrete surface if you keep on power washing it.
Even with a light-duty power washer, sometimes you can damage the concrete surface. When the surface starts to get damaged, then the concrete starts to develop lines, pitting, and other common surface imperfections. Sometimes you can experience deterioration of joints if the mortar is washed away during the whole process.
So, what leads to such damages? The first thing is when you use the wrong nozzle. You need to understand the various types of nozzles supplied with the pressure washer and how best to use them. Whenever you also use excessive pressure, you are likely to damage the surface. Other reasons include spraying too close to the surface and holding the nozzle in a spot for too long.
How to power wash concrete surfaces without damaging them
Now that you know the possible damage a surface might face, it is best if you take caution when power washing concrete surfaces. Below, we look at some of the tips to keep in mind.
- Check your water supply. Without adequate water supply, your pressure washer might not work effectively. There is the need to have adequate water flow. Test to see how long it takes to fill up a five-gallon bucket. If the supply takes less than two minutes to fill such a bucket, then you should be good to go.
- Make sure to check your nozzle. People might be tempted to use a small nozzle as it might help them clean the surface with ease because of the pressure coming from the nozzle. Well, that is not the type of nozzle you should be using. For most concrete surfaces, it is advisable to use a 25-degree nozzle to spray and further rinse the surface. The finer nozzle can only be used in cases where you need to remove grease stains.
- Before you can start the process of power washing, it is better to take a look at the surrounding area. As much as you may want to clean the wall or any other surface, what about the windows nearby or the outdoor furniture. You should consider these other surfaces to understand if they can handle the pressure from the power washer. As such, you may have to cover the different sensitive surfaces before you can start cleaning.
- Once you are ready to start cleaning, it is advisable to aim at a higher angle to clear the surface better without necessarily causing damage to the surface. When you notice the pressure is too high, you can still adjust accordingly.
For those who have not power washed concrete surfaces before, understand that it is a learning curve. It might take some time, but you will eventually learn how to clean such surfaces better in the end.