Asbestos siding achieved its height in popularity between the 1920s and 1970s. Many homes used this type of siding because it was easy to clean and more durable than other substances. Cleaning this siding takes some care since asbestos could be released into the air and cause health problems for those present. Whether you simply want to refresh your asbestos siding or clean in preparation for a paint job, knowing how to treat the substance will keep you safe and your siding shining.
Remove any biological growth such as moss and fungus from the surface of the siding. Mix one part bleach and three parts water and spray the growth. The bleach will kill the organic matter. Within a week, you can come back and simply brush the moss or fungus off the surface.
Mix a mild detergent, such as Tide, with water to make a cleaning solution. Place the detergent in the bucket and pour warm water over it, mixing it together until you get a sudsy, but diluted cleaning solution.
Split the house into sections the size of your arm span. Starting at the bottom and working your way up, scrub each section with your cleaning solution and a stiff brush and rinse immediately with a hose.
Use a ladder for the sections you cannot reach. As you progress higher, rinse each section separately. Keep the lower section wet, so the water and residue will run off more easily. Otherwise, streaks may form that are difficult to remove.
When you have finished scrubbing one side of the house, rinse from the top of the siding to the bottom, aiming your hose downward. You may then move on to the next side, repeating the steps above.