Can You Power Wash Your Home’s Foundation?

Can You Power Wash Your Home’s Foundation?
  • Opening Intro -

    When you are wanting to clean your home's exterior, you may be tempted to simply grab your power washer, turn it on high, and start spraying.

    However, this is usually not recommended, especially if you are wanting to clean your home's foundation.

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In fact, if you don’t know what you’re doing, you may actually cause damage that can be expensive to repair. If you want to power wash your foundation, here are some tips you should follow.

Evaluate Your Foundation

Before spraying your foundation with any type of water mechanism, evaluate your foundation for any cracks or damage. If you have cracks or damage in your foundation, it is likely that any type of spraying mechanism could make the damage worse.

If you recognize any damage, it is ideal to call a professional to repair it before attempting to clean it.

Use the Lowest Possible Setting

If the foundation is severely stained or has other dirt and grime on it, you may be able to use your power washer to get it looking better. But to do so, you’ll need to use the lowest possible setting.

If you don’t, you could be loosening the concrete instead. Should this occur, you could potentially wind up having water accumulate inside the foundation walls as you spray, leading to it leaking into your basement or creating cracks that could lead to other water damage the next time you get a hard rain.

Try the Garden Hose

If you want to wash the foundation, most experts agree it will be much safer to use a garden hose to clean outside concrete walls instead. A garden hose can be a great way of targeting water to a specific location on the foundation.

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Though a garden hose obviously doesn’t have the same strength as a power washer, the decreased risk of damaging your foundation may be worth trying it.

Scrub Brush and Dish Detergent

Once you’ve used the garden hose to get the outer layers of dirt off your foundation, you can usually do the rest of the job by using a sturdy scrub brush and dish detergent. Since this can take some time, always wear rubber gloves to protect your hands, and also use eye protection so that nothing accidentally gets into your eyes.

When using the dish detergent, apply it to the foundation and allow it to soak on the surface for about 10 minutes before you start scrubbing. Once any stains start to fade, rinse the wall with clear water.

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Don’t Take Shortcuts

Finally, don’t take shortcuts when cleaning your foundation. By thinking you can get by with using a power washer that’s on a high setting, you’ll only do more harm than good, and find yourself spending hundreds or thousands of dollars on repairs.

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Though it will take some elbow grease and additional time to clean your foundation without the use of a power washer, doing so will ensure your foundation looks great and is in excellent condition once the job is finished.

About the Author
Anica is a professional content and copywriter who graduated from the University of San Francisco. She loves dogs, the ocean, and anything outdoor-related. She was raised in a big family, so she’s used to putting things to a vote. She recommends Atlas Master Co when it comes to foundation repair.

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