Soft washing or power washing — which one is better for your project? The answer is that it depends on the surface you’re cleaning and the issue you’re dealing with. In this post, Diamond Pro Wash explains the difference between soft washing and power washing and when to use each.
What’s the Difference?
The techniques are similar but remove dirt in different ways. With power washing, you rely on a high-pressure water jet to clear away grime. With soft washing, cleaning solutions take the place of a pressure washer.
Can You Use the Two Together?
Much of the confusion between these two terms comes from the fact that you can use them together if the surface can handle either soft washing or power washing. For example, a washing service can use power washing to clean concrete. They can also enhance their results by applying a cleaning solution to the surface first.
You might also use a combination of both if you’re dealing with mold, mildew, or algae on a patio.
Which Is Better?
There’s no clear-cut answer because it depends on the material you’re cleaning. Power washing can smash glass, while it might take longer to clean concrete using soft washing. The best course of action is to leave it to the professionals because they know when to use each technique. Here are some guidelines based on the materials you’re cleaning.
Wooden or Vinyl Siding
Concrete and brick can usually stand up to high pressure. Wood and vinyl are more fragile and prone to splintering, so soft washing is better.
This one might confuse you a little because storms pound your roof quite often. However, the pressure Mother Nature exerts is no match for that of a pressure cleaner. Therefore, roof soft washing is the better technique because it won’t knock your shingles loose or damage the waterproofing.
Your Patio or Concrete Driveway
Concrete can handle a beating, so power washing is usually better. However, that’s only when the surface is over three years old. Before this, it’s not hard enough yet. You can also use a combination of the two.
A Stucco Surface
Power washing is typically too harsh for this surface, although it can clean it. You’re better off using soft washing on its own.
Paver, Brick, and Tile
Here, the answer depends on how well the mortar or sand between the pavers is holding up. With bricks, you also have to consider how old the bricks are. If the bricks are old and prone to crumbling, it’s better to use the gentler technique. Professionals often err on the side of caution here, as high pressure can loosen the adhesives.
A Wooden Deck
If you know what you’re doing, power washing is a great technique for cleaning a deck. It’s especially useful before you need to resurface the wood.