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What is the best multi purpose cleaner

Discussion in 'Power Washing' started by Big C, Nov 5, 2008.

  1. Big C

    Big C LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,641

    I am looking for a multi-purpose cleaner or mix for siding, brick, concrete and wood. What do you guys suggest? I would like something that is strong enough to clean second floor residential home without climbing.
     
  2. yard_smart

    yard_smart LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 590

  3. shadow745

    shadow745 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 11

    Pressure washer specific detergents are good, but IMO just cost too much. For years I've been using a mix that is cheap, very effective and won't harm plants, your machine, etc. I mix 1 pint of Simple Green, 1 pint of Clorox Outdoor Bleach and 3/4 gallon of water. The Simple Green leaves a nice smell behind and allows the mixture to cling to the surface. The bleach does most of the cleaning and gets rid of mold and mildew. I run fresh water through my pump after each use and have never had any issues with this mix. Later!
     
  4. FCPWLLC

    FCPWLLC LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 352


    My mix costs only about $2.30/gallon. Only use 4-5 gallons per typical house wash. Outdoor Clorox is much more expensive than that.

    How long does it take you to wash a house with that mix? How much pressure are you using?
     
  5. shadow745

    shadow745 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 11

    The Simple Green is around $9 per gallon and the Clorox Outdoor formula is maybe $3 per gallon and a half. The way I mix it I can do our entire home (2,400 sq. ft.) front porch, walkway and back deck with the $12 spent on those 2 chemicals. I've tried other pressure washer specific cleaners that are ready mixed (at Lowe's and HD) and found they didn't work as good or nearly as fast as the mix I use. Have no idea how long it takes. I foam it on, let it sit 5 or so minutes and power off.

    My average pressure/flow is 2700-3000psi/3gpm for the most part with 25-40 degree nozzles.
     
  6. FCPWLLC

    FCPWLLC LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 352

    Lowes and Home Depot stuff doesn't work well.

    Vinyl siding is best (safest) cleaned with low pressure (less than 100 psi) and good detergents.

    We use 12% sodium hypochlorite and Simple cherry (has water softners to aide in rinse and less spotting of windows)

    Typical 2 story homes cleaned in 45minutes to 1 hour and half. No ladders or extension poles.

    Your soaps are right just in low stregnth forms and retail prices. Also method is not safe for vinyl. Where the weakness in chems is not working well, the high pressure is making up for. Not an issue on sturdier surfaces, just bad on vinyl where you don't want water intrusion.
     
  7. Big C

    Big C LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,641

    I am going to try Chlorox,Jomax, soap and water.....I was told by a very good source that this works the best.
     
  8. Don M.

    Don M. LawnSite Member
    Posts: 90

    I was told the wal-mart special $99 lawn mower and the electric weed eater was the best way to mow my yard. I'll keep doing it that way:dancing:
     
  9. Grits

    Grits LawnSite Silver Member
    from Florida
    Posts: 2,994

    Let 'em keep doing it the hard way. They obviously know how to pressure wash. Heck, I mean, they bought the best pressure washer that Lowe's had.
     
  10. yard_smart

    yard_smart LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 590

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