First house cleaning after joining the forum

So after being on this forum for a little over a month, I’ve been itching to do a house cleaning utilizing some of the things I learned on here. After doing a few dozen homes last year, this was my first home “kicking off” this season I guess you could say and I was stoked to finally be able to use my new j-rod, hi-draw chem injector, and elemonator that I just received from Pressure Tek. I also upgraded my SH from just regular Clorox outdoor bleach and ended up trying the Pool Essentials chlorinating liquid from Walmart (it’s only 10% SH, but better then what I was using).

I still used my 3.5 gpm, 4,000 psi DeWalt direct drive, wheeled power washer, a 100-ft garden hose plumbed straight to the house spigot, 40-ft pressure hose and the standard gun that came with the washer originally. So, no, I haven’t upgraded everything, but for as few houses as I do right now, I am okay with my set up currently.

The house was a little under 2,300 sq ft, two-story, vinyl siding with some mildew build up. Typical house in my area that I try to cater to and have cleaned before. However, the introduction of better chemicals, better injector and the j-rod made a world of difference! It was cold, and very windy, yesterday morning when I pulled up to the house at 8:30 but I immediately started taping off outlets, doorbells, keyholes, meter boxes, etc. After getting all my equipment set up, water on, and actually started cleaning closer to 8:45. Using the j-rod and the upgraded chemicals was a night and day difference from what I had been using ((weaker SH and the standard quick disconnect tips (red, green, white, black, yellow) that came with the power washer in addition to the two-story nozzles (pink and blue) I had purchased last year. )) I left the house at noon, so 3.5 hours for me to tape, set up, take before photos, clean, move my equipment one time to the opposite corner of the house, clean, remove tape, walk around with customer, get paid, small talk for 5 minutes or so, rinse equipment and lines, pack up, take after photos and then turn the key in the trucks’ ignition. And, with the wind blowing as fierce as it was, I spent about 15 minutes having to utilize a 24ft ladder in a few spots that I just couldn’t get chemical onto from the ground. Temp when I started was around 40 F and although it did warm up to around 50 F by the time I was done, the wind didn’t let up.

I know that isn’t record breaking by any means, but for me, it was awesome to see that I could shave so much time off of a house cleaning with just a simple $100 order to Pressure Tek and getting better SH - which the Pool Essentials is about 1/2 the price of the Clorox Outdoor - bonus! In the past, I would have spent at least half a day, if not longer on a similar house. I think with my current set-up and more time utilizing the improved practices/equipment I should be able to cut that same job from 3.5 hours down to 2 or less. For me, that would be ideal. I know that most on here with could have likely knocked that house out in 45 minutes or less, but keep in mind that I am working out of the back of a pick up truck, with a home depot washer being wheeled around, with zero hose reels of any type, no buffer tanks, by myself, and still green to the industry.

Most importantly though, the customer was happy and I was happy.

I’ve said it before, but it is worth saying it again - THANK YOU to this forum. Everyone here (ok, most of ya’ll on here :rofl:) are great with sharing of advice or asking questions that invoke a deeper thought process from us newer guys.

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Great Job!!! Check Home Depot or Lowes for pool shock, it is cheaper when you by it in bulk.

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I found 10% at Lowes outside in the garden center when I ran out of the 12.5. Do you have any pool supply stores in your area?

Man, we were talking about you the other day but no one could remember your name. Glad to see you back.

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I find walmart and lowes have the better version. Home depot seems weak/ degraded.

I’ve been here just reading and learning.

The house came out amazing, can’t fault it :+1:

Did another house today, 1,500 sq ft two story covered in mildew and customer requested back porch pad to be cleaned in addition to the house siding. I used the same equipment and practices as yesterday and had the same great results. The house was smaller, and the weather was warmer, but the breeze was still decent. Overall, from the time I pulled up until the time I left was 2.5 hours, but I spent a lot of time taking photos as you can probably tell. I guess I’ll have to keep listening to all of the great wisdom as y’all pass it out!


By the way, I promise I won’t post photos of every house I clean. But for anyone new or just lurking and is unsure of whether or not to join the forum or to take the advice freely offered here, here’s your sign

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@Knighthawk55 thank you for that tip. I saw the 3 pack of chlorinating liquid at Lowe’s and Home Depot locally, but neither was as fresh as the stuff at Walmart at this time.

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@dcbrock there’s only one spa place that I found that sells the liquid but it is only 10% and it’s for twice as much as the stuff at Walmart. All the other stores I’ve contacted sell granular SH. TDC is a member here is who is local to me and offered to me a while back a portion of some of his freshly fresh 12.5%+ stuff, but I didn’t have the need for it at the time.

@MuscleMyHustle thanks! I’m pretty proud of it myself. I can’t notice it being any cleaner than the way I used to do it, but it was a whole lot faster and I stayed practically dry except for the mist blowing in the strong wind. And, I like the idea of using the ladder just a fraction of the time of what I was used to!

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That is awesome, so happy for you. You were the guy who posted that bad fence gig got back on the horse and knocked other stuff out. You are alright in my book.

Great job on both bro. I started in the biz last year myself, the first washes with actual proper equipment feel great. Your customers were certainly happy with the results, houses look great after.

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Very nice. I’m looking to transition into pressure washing and soft washing this year. Hopefully I’ll have the same results you did in these pics.

@R_and_K as long as you implement the ideas the folks here are sharing then you’ll do fine! I’m not saying you should start out with Home Depot equipment like I have, but if that’s where you have to start then so be it. I just opted for the upgraded down stream injector instead of an x-jet since when I started last year I was just using the standard down stream kit that was built into the pump that came with my washer. I was already used to that idea, I just knew that I needed a better built / more consistent downstream injector, better chemicals and a better way of applying it to the house. I am by no means a success story, but if you have questions feel free to ask. I use a lot of before and after photos to promote my business as it give that dramatic “wow” impression on people I feel. Most of my leads have come through Facebook - free advertising - so some quick side by side photos really leave an impression on lots of folks. Best of luck, and, if you are wanting to start up, you’ve come to a great place!

@Dirtyboy yeah, that was me - in over my head doing the fence stain removal. I didn’t plan on giving up, but I know now that wood work wasn’t something I was as familiar with as I thought. I think I like cleaning vinyl siding better!

If you don’t mind my asking, do you dilute your SH with water and if so what’s your ratio. Im new to the field as well and am here to learn. TIA.

@CDK I am by no means an expert, but it is my understanding that the following has to be determined - what surface you are cleaning, what you are trying to remove from the surface, what machine/pump/sprayer is being used to apply chemical, temperature you are working in, what chemical you are trying to apply, sun exposure and more I am sure.
For a basic house wash mix, I am mixing 3 gallons of 10% SH, 2 gallons of water, and 5 oz Elemonator surfactant. You could certainly get more expert opinions by reading through several threads on here or if you ever have a specific building or stain and you want to know how to clean it you could always take a few photos and post them on the forum asking any questions you may have. Also, if anyone else here wants to chime in their opinions / facts please feel free to correct me - no offense taken as I am still learning.

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@CDK I also failed to mention that I am downstreaming the house wash mix through a chemical injector plumbed in just after my pump.

You may or may not have to dilute your SH. It just depends on the equipment you’re using. Your machine, injector, and length of hose will all come into play. There are ways to figure out exactly how much you’re pulling or you can just keep making your mix stronger until the algae turns brown.