3 Eco-Friendly Techniques For Cleaning Your Vinyl Fence

Owning a home is both stressful and exciting. From the initial purchase and basic upkeep to costly repairs and replacements, it is easy to see the overwhelming nature of home ownership. If you are a homeowner with new vinyl fencing, ensuring your investment remains appealing and functional is imperative for protecting your investment. While vinyl is durable, versatile, and virtually maintenance-free, proper cleaning is essential for preventing heavy buildup and mold growth. Of course, using eco-friendly techniques, free from volatile organic compounds, is not only beneficial for protecting the appeal and function of your fence, but also it is a healthier option for you and the environment.

Warm Water

If you notice any buildup of dirt and debris on your fence, your first inclination may be to use an outdoor cleanser. However, these cleansers most likely contain toxic chemicals that can damage your surrounding landscaping. To avoid the harsh effects of cleaning chemicals, utilize a pressure washer.

A light-duty pressure washer offers a sufficient amount of PSI, or Pounds per Square Inch, of water pressure for removing light dirt and debris on the vinyl surface.

After attaching the washer's hose to your outdoor spigot, spray down your fence using side-sweeping motions. Be sure to stand a few feet away from the fence to protect the vinyl from heavier amounts of pressure. Work from the top of the fence to the bottom to efficiently remove all debris.

Pressure wash your fence every few months to prevent heavy accumulation of dirt.

Baking Soda

Sodium bicarbonate, or baking soda, is effective for removing dirt and debris on your vinyl fence as while. While the ingredient creates strong carbonation when it encounters moisture on a surface, it is also safe and gentle to use around your plants and animals. To clean your vinyl fence with this baking soda, add the following to an outdoor pump sprayer:

  • 2 gallons of warm water
  • 2 cups of baking soda

Shake the sprayer container to dissolve the baking soda into the water. Pump the handle to create pressure in the sprayer nozzle before dousing a section of your fence. Allow the baking soda solution to sit on the vinyl for 20 minutes before rinsing with your garden hose. Complete one section of fence at a time to ensure the baking soda has sufficient time to dissolve away dirt and debris.

White Vinegar

While surprising to hear, you do not need to live in a warm, moist climate to develop mold on your home and outdoor surfaces. Unfortunately, these harmful patches of growth can quickly accumulate on your vinyl fence, as well.

In most cases, you will want to use bleach to completely remove the mold and prevent further growth. Although effective, bleach can kill surrounding grass, flowers, shrubs, and plants. In addition, chlorinated bleach can also be detrimental to your health. Even though you are working outdoors, the bleach can irritate your skin and eyes while causing breathing problems.

Thankfully, white vinegar is a safe, non-toxic option for killing mold growth on your vinyl fence. To get started, prevent mold spores from entering your eyes, nose, and mouth by wearing safety goggles and a respiratory mask. Wear long rubber gloves, as well, to decrease your risk of mold exposure to your skin.

In an outdoor pumps sprayer, combine the following ingredients:

  • 1 gallon of warm water
  • 1 gallon of white vinegar

Shake to mix and spray the solution onto patches of mold. Allow the vinegar solution to sit for 30 minutes before rinsing with your garden hose. Use a soft-bristled brush or sponge to scrub away stubborn patches of growth.

A vinyl fence enhances privacy and increases the value of your home, but maintenance is necessary. Using these techniques, you can clean your fence without harsh chemicals that will affect you and the environment. 

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