Siding protects the home exterior from the elements, and provides an additional layer of support for internal structures. Home siding comes in a variety of materials, each with its own advantages. Some types of siding require more maintenance than others, but all need periodic cleaning. OxiClean is a good all-purpose cleaner for all types of outdoor stain and mildew removal, including on home siding.
Whether your home has cedar shingles or vinyl or aluminum siding, periodically cleaning off the dirt and debris preserves the appearance of the material. Mold can be a problem on some types of siding material, causing an unsightly dark or greenish growth. In the past, chlorine bleach was often recommended to remove dirt, stains and mildew from siding, but chlorine bleach is a toxic compound harmful to plants and the environment.
OxiClean contains hydrogen peroxide, surfactants and other ingredients that give it powerful cleaning action. When dissolved in water, the oxygen bleach fights stains and dirt as effectively as chlorine bleach, but without the harsh chemicals, bleaching of colors and toxic effects on the environment. Biodegradable OxiClean does not hurt plants, according to the manufacturer's website.
Wood siding can develop stains from tree sap, road salt and mildew. Chlorine bleach weakens wood fibers, increasing the wear and damage to the wood. To safely remove stubborn stains, dissolve the OxiClean in water according to package directions and apply the solution to the wood siding. Allow it to sit for 15 minutes, then rinse it off thoroughly. Homeowners should use care when using high-pressure washers on cedar shingles, which can cause damage on shingles surfaces as well as moisture intrusion between shingles. Always use the lowest pressure setting when washing wood siding.
Vinyl siding is generally easy to keep clean with just detergent and water, but the oxygen bleach power of OxiClean can cut through stubborn tree sap stains or other materials on your vinyl siding.
Oxygen bleach such as OxiClean is safe to use on aluminum siding and effectively removes mold and mildew that can damage aluminum surfaces. Use Oxiclean as directed and scrub surfaces where mold has discolored the material.
J. Lang Wood
J. Lang Wood's stories, essays and articles have been seen in journals across the country and online. She is a published short story and essay writer who specializes in travel topics, pets, medical subjects, Florida history, environmental issues, political and business topics. She is the author of the novel "Strays" and holds an Associate of Arts in chemistry from College of DuPage.