My first Stucco Job, Need Guidance Please!

I just got my first Stucco House, the costumer called me and asked if I could come over in an hour so I had no time to try and study stucco. It took me 4 hours to wash this one wall. I only used my black and white nozzles and my mix was %1.25 SH with some soap.

I know most people on here would say to use 50/50 but the costumer said the last guy that did it bleached the wall so I was very nervous.

I priced the job for $90, I also would like to know what you would have priced?

The best advice I can give is use the search bar to learn how to clean stucco. Downstreaming doesn’t usually cut it for most stucco jobs. No one here would suggest downstreaming a 50/50 mix especially on stucco. You shouldn’t be using your white tip/high pressure on any house. You need to do a good amount of research on how to wash houses and what % you should be using to wash different types of surfaces. Taking on any jobs without this knowledge may end your company before it even gets off of the ground. I also hope you have insurance.


I have insurance and I was using the white nozzle from a good 2 feet back to where it was pretty much just misting onto the wall. The costumer was an old coworker’s girlfriend and they she needed me to come in an hour, I did not know it was stucco until I got there. I will keep searching the forums but I have many questions to ask about this job.

It doesn’t matter who’s house it is and how quick they want you there. Damage is damage. Don’t point that white nozzle towards any house at any distance. Doing a search on how to wash stucco will answer your questions quicker than waiting for a response to be fed to you. You’ll learn valuable knowledge while doing your research.

@max1 I searched forums, I have spent over 60 hours reading on this site. I am simply asking for guidance/mentoring. In a lot of forums I see you posting the same thing “use your search bar” over and over. For us new guys sometimes we just need help with our specific situations and it feels good to know people in the community are willing to help. :wrench:


Some people like yourself seem not to like good advice when it’s given. Doing research is the best way to learn what you need to know while gathering other valuable information for your business. I can tell by the way you approached this job and by the proof that your profile shows that you have not done anywhere close to 60 hours of research. Say what you will but I believe I did try to help you learn what you need to know to do a job like this properly without spoon feeding. When you are simply told the information you aren’t learning everything you need to know and it doesn’t stick nearly as well.

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What’s your question? Just how much to charge?

I started my research 2 months ago without creating an account. Max your an awesome man.* :wink: @max1

@EDM95 I have a couple questions. The costumer asked me not to use too much bleach so I only used 1.5% on here. What % would you have used? There was also meter boxes on the building with loose electrical wires hanging out. I tried my best to not spray any wires but there was no way to not get them wet. How would you feal with this area?


Personally I would have told them to have the outlet stuff fixed before I did the job or I’d skip over that area. I run a larger machine, I use straight 12%. No idea what percentage that equals. But if that didn’t work I’d just use the 12v starting at 30/70 sh/water. That one wall wouldn’t have taken me more then my 1hr minimum so I would have been at 139$.

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Also I’d disconnect the injector and still use the black tip to rinse.

Ok thank you. My last question is while I was washing the wall I noticed some areas of mold were not coming off untill my 2nd application of bleach. For Stucco does this mean my bleach% was too low or does it mean i need more soap/ dwell time?

You shouldn’t have gotten any water on this outlet unless you checked it with a meter to make sure it wasn’t hot. That is a very bad problem. Not just for you, the washer, but for the building as a whole.

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Ya we were very careful not to get any water on those wires. Thats part of the reason it took us 4 hours. Thank you for the warning @sgb I will make sure to keep avoiding those areas in the future.

Never let a customer tell you how to do your job. You’re suppose to be the professional. I know it wouldn’t have happened on this job but what happens if a customer doesn’t know what he’s talking about, tells you what to use, and you end up killing his landscaping or damaging the siding? They sure won’t take responsibility for it. Be confident, explain your process, and let them make their decision on if they want to hire you.

As mentioned with wires hanging out that bad you shouldn’t have washed at all even if you were careful. There have been a few guys on here who have had fires started just by not taping off electrical outlets and meters or water running down and hitting some faulty wiring. I’d still mention those wires to them. If they’re hot some kid is going to come alone and get zapped.

There are plenty of posts about stucco and what percent to use. There were even a couple just yesterday with explanations of how to clean it. The reason why the "mold’ or algae wasn’t coming off with your second application is because down streaming doesn’t usually give you a strong enough mix. You really need an x-jet or 12 volt for stucco. You normally need about 2%-3% and sometimes even stronger. I doubt the stucco got bleached by the previous guy. He probably just cleaned the dirt and algae off. Depending on the paint I guess it’s always possible though. All you need to do is test in an inconspicuous area with a strong mix before starting.

I know they wanted you to come to the job right away but, if you don’t know how to clean something you shouldn’t just rush over only to make some money. Decisions like that can get you in trouble. Once your reputation takes a hit it’s really hard to get it back. It’s so not worth taking that chance for $90 or really any amount of money. You need to learn how to do a job before attempting. Not to mentioned if that place burned down because of those wires that’s on you. Listen to @Max1 and do a lot more reading. I’m surprised with 60 hours of reading that you haven’t ditched the white and black nozzles for either the proper jrod or m5ds and that you haven’t come across how to clean stucco.

I would’ve been at a lot more than $90 and especially a last minute job. Not to mention it being on a Sunday. I normally won’t clean just one side of a house.


Thank you @marinegrunt for the advice. I am going to follow your advice and get an xjet. As for how I am dealing with my costumers you are absolutely right. I am going to have more patience and really learn up about a job before I do it. I do spend about 8 hours every Sunday reading posts on here and watching youtube videos for the past 2 months. I am going to start studying a lot more. @max1 Thanks for taking the time to respond, you did provide some good advice about being careful with ny company. You guys are helping me out more than you know. I really appreciate it.

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Giving you advice on how to proceed to learn what you need to know and calling out certain things isn’t aggressive lol. You’ve gotten some good advice already so roll with it and continue to research. Soon enough you’ll learn how to do it correctly and gain the confidence you need to successfully complete different types of jobs. Your next step is to mount your machine to your truck or trailer and keep those open buckets of SH off the grass. Research truck and trailer set ups.


X-jet way too much force.
Downstream injectors are rated 10:1 so 12.5% sodium hypochlorite comes out @ 1.25%
Softwash Inc proportioner allows for up to 50% mix using metering and ball valve reduction
Power wash store Inc proportioner allows for up to 100% mix of any chemical

That being said I personally would set a 250 or so minimum. That way you do t get stuck making 22.50/hr.

Side of stucco house 250, chemical application 2-3% strength with mild surfactant and then a light rinse using a 2540 tip and a pressure washer.

Pro tip, never put a ladder against a home owners siding, also get a stabilizer bar for the top. Keep onto shingled areasnever siding