Exterior Wood Cleaning and Inspections

We're often called on by homeowners who need exterior trim painted. On inspection, we realize that painting is not going to solve the problem. Often times, we encounter wood rot or wear issues that require the exterior wood to be repaired or replaced before we can paint it. There is an easy way to prevent costly repair jobs: perform an inspection of the exterior elements of your home yourself. An exterior home inspection is not difficult. You'll want to examine the eaves, soffit, fascia and any decorative molding. You'll be looking for insect holes, separated joints, missing sections of molding, etc. Of course, keep an eye out for mold or fungus growing on wood surfaces. A regular inspection will let you get ahead of any serious damage. It is easier to fix a small piece of loose molding, than to have to replace the fascia or soffit of the entire house. After regular inspections, cleaning your exterior wood surfaces is also an important part of home maintenance. Cleaning exterior wood surfaces can be done in a few different ways - here are some of the better methods to do this: - Pressure Washing: Using a pressure sprayer can be an effective way to remove dirt, mold, cobwebs and other debris from wood surfaces of your home. You'll want to be very careful if you choose to do this - pressure sprayers are quite powerful and if you're not careful, you may splinter the wood or otherwise damage soffit, fascia or molding joints. Set the pressure low to moderate, or call a professional to do this. - Wood Cleansers: There are cleansers available at Lowes or Home Depot. These are solutions that must be applied through a pump sprayer or by hand with a brush. Many exterior wood cleanser and treatment products are now engineered to be environmentally sound, so you don't have to worry about dripping cleansers or washing it off into your bushes. - Bleach Mixtures: You may find that a weak bleach mixture (1 part bleach to 5 or 6 parts water) will work nicely to remove dirt, mold and cobwebs. This is true. However, you'll need to be careful - bleach will put holes in your clothes and you definitely need to wear eye protection. Also, bleach will kill the grass, so be careful with your bucket and when you rinse. By taking some common sense precautions and annually inspecting exterior wood surfaces accompanied by cleaning, you'll stay out in front of costly repairs. Then, when you call us to paint, it'll be a much quicker and easier job. If you have any questions about exterior painting, just give us a call!

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