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10 Things You Should Never Pressure Wash

Pressure washing is an extremely useful way to maintain your home. However, it is a tool that must be used correctly, or you’ll actually end up causing damage which will cost you money. Here are a few items that should never be pressure washed.

  • Under Your Car’s Hood

The pressure from the water could easily disconnect wires under your hood or force water into places it shouldn’t be. The force of the water may actually clean areas that you don’t want to clean; removing lubricants that are needed for the car to function properly.

  • Car Exteriors

A pressure washer is strong enough to chip paint and dull your car’s finish. Some may even be strong enough to put tiny dents in your car. In this case, using a pressure washer can be overkill for your car’s exterior. A water hose or car wash is the best choice.

  • Asphalt Roofs

Asphalt roofs cannot withstand the strong jet of a pressure washer. The granules are easily knocked off, leaving your roof compromised and susceptible to damage.

  • Electrical Meters and Panels

It’s best to be on the safe side and not blast electrical panels or other components with water, even if they are on the outside of your home. The force of rain is much less than that of a pressure washer.

  • Stained Wood

If you are preparing to re-stain wood, then a pressure washer is great. However, if you want the item to remain stained, you should avoid using a power washer or let a professional pressure washer handle the job.

  • Aluminum Siding

Aluminum is a very lightweight metal and dents extremely easily. Pressure washing aluminum siding can lead to unsightly dents in your home’s exterior. Some professionals may be able to handle an aluminum siding project, but it can be a tricky task for a DIYer to undertake.

  • Lead Paint

If your home was built before 1978, there’s a possibility its paint may contain lead which is an environmental hazard. You don’t want lead filled dust flying into the air, and you definitely don’t want it to leech into your soil where it can contaminant water sources. You’ll need to get your exterior paint tested by a professional to find out if it contains lead or not.

  • Crumbling Brick or Mortar

In most cases, brick and mortar can be pressure washed just fine. However, if it is in bad condition with sections easily crumbling and falling off, pressure washing will just weaken its structure further.

  • Shingle Siding

Shingle siding is much too delicate for pressure washing. The flow of water can rip shingles right from the surface.

  • Any Living Thing

Pressure washers can provide 30-80 times the intensity of pressure you would get from your standard garden hose.

There are many things to consider when deciding whether to pressure wash a surface such as what intensity of pressure to use and even which type of spray nozzle attachment is best. Let the professionals at Oceantime Pressure Washing LLC take care of your heavy duty cleaning jobs without causing damage. Visit us online to find out more.

Surfaces Inappropriate for Pressure Washing

With great power comes great responsibility, and it’s true for pressure washing too. Inappropriately wielding the power of pressure washers can damage many surfaces. To make maximum use of pressure washing, it’s important to know which settings are appropriate for these powerful blasts of water. Here are some basics to keep in mind.

Old or rotting wood

This one is straightforward, as it’s easy to see that brittle pieces of wood can crumble under even a little bit of pressure. Decks made of soft wood should be washed gently, as opposed to the decks made of strong wood, which can take high-speed pressure washing. Old walls and wooden fences cannot often handle the strength of a jet of pressure washers and should be treated delicately. With the right surface, pressure washing leaves a pristinely clean look, but with weak surfaces, the water can easily gouge and leave unsightly narrow streaks.

Cloth or woven surfaces

Although many types of outdoor furniture can take on powerful blasts of water, and be restored to their sparkling selves, not all are as strong. Cabana curtains, as sturdy as they look, are a good example. When those stains or marks on certain upholstered surfaces are bothersome, it’s key to remember how strong they are. Certain tarps and outdoor materials are not sturdy enough to withstand the jet of water and can become torn or frayed as a result. Rolling up those fabrics and cleaning them gently is the remedy for such soft textures.

Thin glass

Pressure washing does a superb job in cleaning many windows and panels, but that doesn’t mean all glass is made equal. When pressure washing those wicker wood and metal surfaces on the patio, it can be easy to come across a glass decoration or two, but many glass coffee tables don’t have the structural integrity that can endure heavy jets of water. Removing such furniture from the to-be-cleaned site is crucial for expediting an effective and safe pressure washing session.


Without the knowledge of which materials are okay for pressure washing, the result can be disastrous. However, experts are experts! If you have any concerns about your pressure washing needs, simply give Oceanside Pressure Washing and Roof Cleaning a call. Getting those grimy areas squeaky clean can be done before you know it.