Vinyl siding is the most popular cladding option for homeowners in North America, loved for its beauty, easy upkeep and lasting performance. But while vinyl is durable, it does need care from time to time. This type of siding requires periodic cleaning with mild soap and water and sometimes a spot clean for hard-to-wipe stains. Learn more about how to care for your vinyl siding below.
How to Clean Vinyl Siding
Wash your vinyl siding with a soft cloth or long-handled, soft-bristled brush. If your siding has a textured surface, use only a soft bristle brush to remove stains in the grooves. Start at the bottom of the house, working your way up, rinsing the cleaning solution completely before it dries. Not all siding manufacturers approve cleaning with power washers, so be sure to check the manufacturer’s recommendation. If you use a power washer, hold it straight at eye level to keep the water on top of the siding and prevent driving water behind the siding.
What Types of Cleaners to Use
Mild soap and water will generally do the trick for vinyl siding, but if you need something a little stronger for dirt or bird droppings, you may use a multi-purpose cleaner like Simple Green or Soft Scrub. For precaution, make sure to spot check any general or stain-specific cleaner before using it on a large section of siding. After using the cleaner, be sure to rinse it with water. Don’t use cleaners containing organic solvents, undiluted chlorine bleach, liquid grease remover, nail polish remover, or furniture polish.
How to Remove Mold and Mildew
For hard-to-remove dirt, wipe the siding down with a solution that includes 1/3 cup powdered detergent, 2/3 cup household cleaner and 1 gallon of water. If mildew is an issue, prepare the aforementioned solution but substitute 1 quart of laundry bleach for 1 quart water.
How to Protect Vinyl Siding from Discoloration and Heat
If you use stains, sealants or wet concrete for a home renovation project, be sure to cover your vinyl siding. Certain insecticides and herbicides can stain vinyl siding, so consult product labels before applying. Additionally, vinyl siding can melt when exposed to a significant heat source because it is made from organic material. Be sure to keep barbecue grills and other ignitable materials such as dry leaves, mulch and trash away from your siding.
Vinyl is a top siding choice for good reason. If you want to learn more about vinyl siding and how to care for it, check out the Vinyl Siding Institute for more information.