As the summer goes on and you spend more and more time staring at your vinyl fence while enjoying your garden, yard or pool, you may be wondering, "How do I clean vinyl fences?"
The answer really is quite simple. Here are the basic steps:
Rinse fence with water
Apply soap to break down mold, algae, and/or dirt
Rinse away cleaner with water
Address stubborn algae or dirt with a soft bristle brush
If you're in a hurry, jump ahead to the in depth description of each step for how to clean vinyl fences.
For a clean vinyl fence, you'll need:
Pressure washer with soap tip as well as 40-degree tip for rinsing
Non-bleach outdoor detergent
Protective clothing to save clothes, eyes, and skin from chemicals
Soft-bristle outdoor brush
One of the greatest benefits of vinyl fencing is how little maintenance it needs throughout the years. Vinyl fencing panels are crafted from the highest-grade ingredients. Complimenting procedures such as impact modifiers and UV inhibitors deliver an end product that is durable — to the point of surviving the roughest weather with minimal impact — for years to come.
Of course durability does not equal spotlessness, especially on classic white vinyl fencing. Overtime, vinyl fences can acquire dirt, mildew and algae, which — if left untreated — can stain your fence. The solution to this is an annual deep cleaning. With the right tools, this four-step process is quick and sure to leave you with a fence looking as good as the day you had it installed.
How to Clean Your Vinyl Fence:
Rinse your vinyl fence with water.
Start by spraying down your vinyl fence. Preferably, you'll use a pressure washer, though a hose will do the trick as well. Try to choose a mild, overcast day with little wind to clean your fence. Intense sunlight and heat may cause the detergent to dry quickly on the warmed surface of your vinyl fence panels which can lead to streaking. Wind increases the chances of water and soap blowing into your face.
Note: Start with one vinyl fence panel. Follow all steps before moving onto the next. This lowers the risk of cleaner drying on the surface and causing streaks.
Apply soap to break down mold, algae and dirt.
Many homeowners use bleach to remove these substances as well as stains from their vinyl fence. While this works for white vinyl fencing, using bleach to clean your fence may affect the color of the panels if they are anything other than white. Additionally, the use of bleach is harmful to pets and many plants including grass.
Do some research and find an alternative such as Simple Green Deck and Fence Cleaner.
Once your fence has been sprayed down, use the soap tip on your pressure washer to disintegrate dirt, algae and mildew. Begin spraying at the bottom of your fence, working your way up in short vertical strokes.
If you are not using a pressure washer, utilize a soft sponge to get suds on to the fence.
Rinse away cleaner with water.
To ensure a truly clean vinyl fence, allow the detergent to remain on the surface breaking down dirt for 2-5 minutes. When the time is up, return to your pressure washer or hose and rinse the fencing panel. Use a light spray with the 40-degree nozzle tip or your host. Any water pressure too hard may damage your fence.
Address stubborn algae or dirt spots with a soft bristle brush.
Using your brush, apply a second round of soap to the spots or stains. Scrub away the tough spots and rinse with water again as needed.
And just like that, you're done! No need to dry your fence. The sun will take care of that.
If your white vinyl fence still has stains on it, consider spot cleaning with a diluted bleach mixture, careful not to let it get in your eyes, on clothes, or in your garden.Once you do this, you'll be all set to enjoy the rest of your summer with a sparkly white vinyl fence!
Of course, if you have any fence questions, reach out and we'll be happy to help.