Pressure washing is a useful thing to do to remove paint or grime from the side of a house, mildew or stains from a deck or driveway and graffiti or other unwanted materials from a hard surface. However, sometimes pressure washing isn't the ideal solution or hasn't worked. There are a number of pressure washing alternatives offered these days, ranging from new cleaning solutions to cleaning by hand.
Cleaning by Hand
Sometimes doing things the painstaking old-fashioned way is still the best way to do it. Cleaning a house or a walkway by hand is offered by some specific service companies which will come and scrub away grime with industrial soap, regular hoses and a whole lot of elbow grease. While this method may be a bit more expensive, the cleaning will be done without the stress or noisiness of a high-powered pressure washer.
Some companies are now cleaning tough stains on hard surfaces with foam, replacing the need for pressure washing. Thick foam is spread out on the surface, and biological cleaning agents within the foam sink down deep into the grime or stain and remove it from the surface. The foam and the broken-down grime or stain are then washed off with no more pressure than that of a regular garden hose. This foam can be used on the sides of houses and on decks, walkways and driveways to remove most things a pressure washer can remove.
For things on walkways, driveways and sidewalks like gum, tar or other thick viscous materials that are incredibly difficult to get up, heat from a source like a heat gun is a good alternative to pressure washing. While this is more painstaking then simply pressure washing the material off the surface, it will more effectively remove it and allow you to focus on the areas that may have been stained or damaged by that viscous material being there in the first place. This heat cleaning should be accompanied by a scraping tool that can remove the material while it is being heated up. Make sure this is only used on surfaces that can withstand incredibly high amounts of heat and won't be damaged by it.
Hailing from Austin, Texas, Daniel Westlake has written under pen names for a myriad of publications all over the nation, ranging from national magazines to local papers. He now lives in Los Angeles, Calif. but regularly travels around the country and abroad, exploring and experiencing everything he can.