Five Things You Should Never Pressure Wash

Five Things You Should Never Pressure Wash

No one loves pressure washing more than us, but it's not the right choice for every job. Pressure washing is a great way to clean and refresh the exterior of your home, but there are a few surfaces and things that you should always avoid when using your pressure washer. 

What many people do not know is that pressure washing can actually be very dangerous, and if done incorrectly, it can lead to serious damage or injury. This is due to the high speed at which water is expelled from the pressure washer. 

From electrical components to roofs and even pets or animals, the following article outlines the top five things you should never pressure wash. So before you go crazy with your washer, take a second and make sure you are only using it where you should be.

Five Things You Should Never Pressure Wash


1. Asphalt Shingles

Pressure washing asphalt shingles are not recommended because it can cause damage to the shingles and reduce their lifespan. Pressure washing can cause the granules on the shingles to become loose and fall off, leaving the shingles exposed to the elements and more prone to damage.

That is why it is always recommended to clean asphalt shingles by using a soft brush and mild detergent to clean them. This will help to keep the shingles in good condition and extend their lifespan.

2. Stained Wood

Another surface you want to keep your pressure washer far away from is stained wood. Pressure washing can strip away the protective sealant applied to stained wood, leaving them vulnerable to moisture and other elements. Pressure washing can also cause the wood to warp, crack, or splinter, which can be difficult and expensive to repair. 

Additionally, pressure washing can cause the stain to fade or become discolored, making it difficult to match the original color, and can cause the wood to become saturated with water, which can lead to mold and mildew growth. It is better to use a mild cleaning agent and a rag when cleaning stained wood. 

3. Electrical Panels and Meters

It should be obvious that pressure washing electrical panels and meters is a dangerous practice that should never be done. But some homeowners are not aware of just how dangerous this type of activity could be. 

Pressure washing can cause water to enter the electrical panel or meter, which can cause a short circuit, leading to an electrical fire. Also, the pressure of the water can damage the electrical components, leading to a malfunction or failure of the electrical system. This is why you should never pressure wash near any electrical equipment or wiring. 

4. Pets or Other Animals

You may think that your pressure washer can double as a hose for pets, livestock, or other animals, but this is very dangerous and will likely lead to extensive injury to the animal sprayed.  Pressure washing can cause injuries, including skin abrasions, burns, and even death.

Pressure washing can also cause psychological trauma to the animal. The high-pressure water can be extremely loud and frightening, and the animal may become scared and stressed. This can lead to long-term behavioral issues, such as aggression or fear.

Pressure washing can also cause physical damage to the animal's fur or skin. The high-pressure water can strip away the natural oils and protective layers of the animal's fur, leaving it dry and brittle. This can lead to skin irritation, infection, and even hair loss.

For these reasons, animals should never be exposed to a pressure washer as it is inhumane and dangerous. Keep your pets in mind and grab a regular garden hose next time bath time rolls around.

5. Windows and Other Glass 

Pressure washing windows is not recommended for a variety of reasons. Pressure washing can cause damage to window frames, seals, and glass. The high pressure of the water can cause the seals to break, which can lead to water damage and mold growth. 

Also, look out for other exposed, individual glass and make sure it is stowed away properly before power washing outdoor spaces. Keep in mind that pressure washing glass can also lead to shattering, causing safety hazards and endangering others.

Watch Where You’re Aiming That!

While pressure washing remains one of the best ways to keep your home looking as good as new, with so many dos and don'ts, it can seem daunting to start a pressure washing job. Hopefully, this article helped provide guidance on what you can and can not pressure wash before you get out there. 

If you are still not feeling up for the job, that is okay. There are many professional services that provide pressure washing for residential homes. This article outlines some of the leading reasons why opting to hire a professional might be a better choice for you. 

No matter if you choose to hire someone or you wield the pressure washer yourself, keep in mind what should and should not be pressure washed, and the safety of living things like plant life, animals, and other people. 

Contact us if you need help with your particular job!