Pressure Washing vs. Soft Washing

Soft Washing Vs. Pressure Washing

Taking on the job of cleaning your house is no small task.

So, while we are on that subject here are a couple of things to keep in mind.

Two phrases come to mind when it comes to cleaning the exterior of your home, pressure washing, and soft washing. Both of these phrases fall into the same conversation of power washing, but they are a lot different than they seem.

By using the term pressure wash, it implies that pressure will be used to clean and you are right. But using pressure on the wrong surfaces can damage the surface that you were initially trying to clean, because of the high pressure that it is designed for. Whereas the use of a soft wash in the wrong area, you may not get the initial clean you were hoping for.

At Buckley Brothers, we want to help you understand the best method of cleaning, for the different areas of your home.

There is a clear difference between the two methods of house cleaning, so let us help you in determining the best method for cleaning your home.

What is Pressure Washing?

Pressure washing is using water that is being pressurized with a machine to clean surfaces that are stronger and have contaminants that are deeply embedded in them. These surfaces usually included: metal, aluminum, or wood. Pressure washing is usually the best method when preparing to paint or stain a surface. Pressure washing while being very beneficial can cause damage to siding and wood if it is not done correctly.

Pressure Washable Surfaces:


Decking & Rails- It is a great method to use to remove old paint and stain in preparation for new paint and stain to go on. It can cause light splintering but can be removed at the sanding stage before painting or staining.
Fencing- Will removed algae, mildew and temporarily remove “graying”.

Metal & Aluminum:

The high pressure of pressure washing is a great way to clean and prepare for a new coat of paint on these types of surfaces. It is not recommended to be done without painting afterward, due to it removing the paint and the protective finish from the surface.


Concrete is a very pores surface, which means that there are lots of little pockets that can hold dirt and other contaminants. Pressure washing these surfaces is a sure way to clean out all of the pores and getting it looking new again. It is not recommended to pressure washing concrete that is under 5 years old due to the maximum hardness having yet to be reached. The best method for cleaning new concrete is by a soft washing method.

What is Soft Washing?

Soft washing is the use of a high volume of water, mixed with special chemical solutions to clean different surfaces with lower pressure. This is the most effective way to clean dirt, algae, mildew and dirt. Soft washing relies solely on the chemicals and the knowledge of the user to clean the surfaces.

When you are planning on washing your house, roof or concrete that is less than 5 years old the best method is by soft washing. This helps to insure that the area being cleaned is done so the best and most effective way possible.
*The only way that your roof should be washed is by way of soft washing; don’t let someone fool you by saying otherwise. Any use of heavy pressure to clean your roof, especially shingles can heavily damaged the integrity of the roof.

Pressure washing:
– Is good when you plan to restore wood and metal surfaces.
– Is good to clean 6+ year old concrete.
Soft washing:
– Is the direction to go for a house or roof cleaning.
– Is the best way to clean <6 year old concrete.

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