How To Clean A Wood Fence With A Pressure Washer

How To Clean A Wood Fence With A Pressure Washer

Can I clean a wood fence with a pressure washer?

Yes, but there are things you should do to make sure you don’t damage your fence. 

Tip 1: Address any very dirty areas with a wire brush first to remove heavily stuck debris. 

Tip 2: Cover plants with a plastic sheet to keep from damaging them.

Tip 3: It’s likely best to use a 25-degree nozzle for fence washing. The degrees determine the pressure, so a 0 degree nozzle delivers the most pressure. Nozzles are color coded per their pressure, and the typical colors are:

Red: 0 degrees – most pressure. DON’T use this on wood unless you want to cause damage

Yellow: 15 degrees – Enough force to strip a surface – good for concrete, hard porous surfaces

Green: 25 degrees – Good for painted surfaces like wood, siding, fences

White: 40 degrees – Safe for use on windows and screens

Black: 65 degrees – Spray on detergents 

The different colors of pressure washer nozzles & what they mean | Ladder Heroes

Tip 4: Stand about two feet away from the fence as you risk damage.

Tip 5: Use cold water, as hot water can cause grain raising and subsequent premature aging of your fence. In other words, don’t power wash, as power washers use heat and pressure washers do not.

Pressure washing your wood fence

If you want to use a detergent, make sure to get one designed specifically for wood. Spray the wood cleaner on with a spray on nozzle which is usually the black, 65 degree tip. Spray from the bottom to top with a few board’s width in each pass. Check with the manufacturer of the detergent for how long to leave it on your fence, but you won’t want to let it dry. 

Next, start with a 25 degree nozzle tip to spray off the detergent. Work top to bottom, and overlap your passes. Once finished, let the fence dry before applying a stain or sealer, if you’re doing that. 

There you have it, the steps to wash your wooden fence with a pressure washer. It’s pretty simple, and if you follow these tips you shouldn’t do any unnecessary damage to your fence.