How to Clean Exterior Painted Wood Surfaces

When the exterior wood on your home is primed and painted properly, it can look beautiful, and you may think your work is done. However, like any surface exposed to the elements, painted wood on the exterior of your home easily collects dirt, grime and mildew that ruin the look of your home. If it remains long enough, it can even damage the paint or the wood itself.

General Cleaning

Step 1

Mix warm water and 1 tsp. of dish detergent in a bucket.

Step 2

Soak a sponge or scrub brush in the cleaning solution and scrub at the wooden surface to remove dirt and grime.

Step 3

Rinse the surface with a sponge or rag soaked in clean water, or with clean water from a garden hose, to remove any remaining suds.

Step 4

Dry with a clean towel, or allow it to air dry.

Mildew Cleaning

Step 1

Wear gloves when working with chemical cleaners such as bleach.

Step 2

Mix a ratio of one part household bleach to three parts warm water in a bucket. Add 1/3 cup of dish detergent or laundry detergent for a cleaning boost.

Step 3

Soak a sponge or scrub brush in the cleaning solution. Scrub at the wooden surface to kill and remove mold and mildew.

Step 4

Rinse the surface with a sponge or rag soaked in clean water, or with clean water from a garden hose, to remove any residual cleaner.

Step 5

Dry with a clean towel, or allow it to air dry.