Cleaning the exterior of your home before painting is crucial for ensuring the paint adheres properly and lasts longer. Here’s a comprehensive guide from Scholars Edge on how to properly clean your home’s exterior:

Inspect the Surface

First, walk around your home and inspect the exterior surface for any signs of damage, such as cracks, peeling paint, rot, dirt, mildew, or loose paint. Address any needed repairs before cleaning to ensure a smooth and effective cleaning process. Gather all the necessary cleaning supplies, including a pressure washer (if available). Using the wrong cleaner can damage the surface, so check the manufacturer’s instructions or consult a professional if you need clarification. 

Safety First

Your well-being is our priority at Scholars Edge. Before you start cleaning, wear appropriate protective gear, such as goggles and gloves, to shield yourself from chemicals or debris.

Remove Debris

Use a broom or brush to remove any loose debris from the exterior walls, windows, and other surfaces, such as dirt, cobwebs, leaves, and insects. This step will make the cleaning process more efficient.

Pressure Washing

If you have access to a pressure washer (Scholars Edge Painting does!), use it to clean more extensive areas of your home’s exterior. Start from the top and work your way down, using a wide-angle spray to avoid damaging the surface. Keep the nozzle at least 6-12 inches from the surface to prevent damage. Remember to wear protective gear and be cautious of your surroundings to prevent accidents. After scrubbing, thoroughly rinse the surface with clean water to remove any residue from the detergent or cleaner. Again, start from the top and work your way down to prevent streaking. If you notice mildew or mold growth on the surface, use a solution of bleach and water (1 part bleach to 3 parts water) or a commercial mildew remover. Apply the solution to the affected areas, let it sit for a few minutes, scrub with a brush, and rinse thoroughly. Allow the surface to dry completely before painting. Depending on the weather conditions, this may take a few hours to a full day. Ensuring the surface is dry will help the paint adhere better.

Inspect for Any Missed Spots

Once the surface is dry, inspect it for missed spots or stubborn stains. Spot clean as needed before proceeding with painting. This final inspection ensures a spotless surface, ready for a fresh coat of paint.


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