Servicing Canandaigua NY and Surrounding Areas 

May 22, 2024

How to Clean Vinyl Siding

Clean Vinyl Siding

Vinyl siding is a fantastic choice for busy homeowners. It's low-maintenance, durable, and comes in a plethora of colors to suit every style. However, even the best vinyl siding needs some TLC to stay looking its freshest. Here in the Finger Lakes region, our homes face dirt, mildew, algae, and other grime that can make siding look dingy over time.

Don't worry, cleaning your vinyl siding is a manageable task – usually requiring little more than some simple supplies and a bit of elbow grease! At Up Top Exteriors in Farmington, NY, we want to help you keep your home's exterior sparkling. Read on for our expert tips, choosing the right cleaning solutions, and techniques to tackle both routine cleaning and tougher grime.

When To Clean Vinyl Siding

For the best results, aim to clean your vinyl siding annually. Ideally, pick a warm day in spring or fall when the temperatures are moderate. Additionally, it's good practice to visually inspect your siding after severe storms to ensure there isn't any debris or damage that needs attention.

Essential Cleaning Supplies

  • Garden Hose with Nozzle: A basic garden hose with an adjustable nozzle gives you control over the water pressure.
  • Soft-Bristle Brush: Choose a long-handled car wash brush or a brush designed for exterior cleaning. Avoid overly stiff bristles that could scratch the vinyl.
  • Bucket: For mixing cleaning solutions.
  • Sponge For spot cleaning and scrubbing stubborn areas.
  • Ladder: (If needed to reach higher areas) Practice safety and have someone hold it steady for you if possible.

Choosing Your Cleaning Solution

Let's explore some of the most effective options for cleaning vinyl siding:

  • Mild Soapy Solution: For general cleaning and light grime, mix warm water with dish soap or laundry detergent. This is a safe, affordable option for most cleaning jobs.
  • Vinegar and Water: Combine equal parts white vinegar and water in a spray bottle. Vinegar's acidity helps break down dirt and is a natural mildew deterrent.
  • Specialized Cleaners: Commercial vinyl siding cleaners are available if you have heavy buildup or tough stains. Read the labels carefully and follow dilution instructions.
  • Bleach (With Caution): For severe mildew, a diluted bleach solution (check manufacturer recommendations for your siding) can be effective. However, excessive use can damage or fade some vinyl. It's always best to test any cleaning solution with bleach on an inconspicuous area first.

Cleaning Your Vinyl Siding: Step-by-Step

  1. Prep the Area: Clear away furniture near the house, close windows, and cover any plants or shrubs close to the siding you'll be cleaning.
  2. Rinse Down: Use your garden hose to rinse any loose dirt and debris from the siding.
  3. Work in Sections: Starting from the bottom and working your way up, apply your chosen cleaning solution to a section of the siding.
  4. Scrub Gently: With your soft-bristled brush, gently scrub the siding in a horizontal motion, following the 'grain' of the paneling. Use a sponge for heavy spots.
  5. Rinse Thoroughly Before the cleaning solution dries, rinse each section clean with your garden hose.
  6. Address Tough Stains: If any stubborn stains persist, spot treat them with a stronger concentration of your cleaning solution or a targeted cleaner.

Pressure Washing: Pros and Cons

Many homeowners ask about pressure washing vinyl siding. Here's the scoop: pressure washers save time on large areas or very dirty siding. However, improper use can force water behind the siding, leading to mold problems. High pressure can dent or even crack some vinyl varieties. We do not recommend power washing vinyl or polymer siding as it can cause moisture intrusion, damage, and/or discoloration.

If you do use a pressure washer, stick to a wide spray nozzle on its lowest setting, and hold it at a distance. It's usually best to leave pressure washing to the professionals!

Up Top Exteriors is Here for You

If you have any questions about your vinyl siding projects, don't hesitate to reach out to us! We offer siding installation, roofing services and more.

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Canandaigua, NY

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Farmington, NY 14425
Up Top Exteriors is a family owned and operated roofing company that specializes in roof repair, installation and siding in the Finger Lakes region. We provide expert exterior services in Canandaigua, NY and surrounding areas.


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