Should I Use Soap to Pressure Wash Siding?

When it comes to maintaining the exterior of your home, keeping your siding clean is a priority. Not only does it enhance the curb appeal of your home, but it also protects the material from long-term damage caused by dirt, algae, and other environmental contaminants. Pressure washing is a highly effective method to achieve this, but there’s often a question homeowners ask: Should I use soap to pressure wash the siding? In this blog, we’ll explore the benefits and considerations of using soap in pressure washing siding, ensuring you have all the information needed to make the best decision for your home. JD Power Washing is here to guide you through the process with expert advice.

Understanding the Basics of Pressure Washing Siding

Pressure washing is using a high-pressure water sprayer meant to remove dirt, mold, and grime on the outside sides of a house, building, etc. While water gets the job done for specific areas, adding a bit of soap dramatically boosts the cleaning power.

The Role of Soap in Pressure Washing

Soap is a surfactant, and by reducing water’s surface tension, it can help penetrate dirt and grease more easily. This can go a long way in aiding the cleaning of siding with dirt baked into it by the sun or organic growth such as algae and mildew.

Benefits of Using Soap to Pressure Wash Siding

Incorporating soap into your pressure-washing routine can provide several advantages:

Improved Cleanliness

Soap will emulsify stubborn dirt and stains much better breaking them down and making them easier to dissolve than plain water. This gives a much cleaner surface in a considerably shorter amount of time.

Enhanced Longevity and Protection

It cleans the siding material of potentially damaging substances: molds, acarids, and salts that can accumulate on the surface, thereby increasing the material’s life expectancy. 

Eco-Friendly Options 

Many biodegradable and environmentally friendly soaps are available for sale that are created explicitly for practical use in pressure washing equipment so that homeowners might clean their siding without harming their existing plant life

Choosing the Right Soap for Your Siding

Not all soaps are suitable for every type of siding. Choosing the right product is crucial to avoid damage.

For Vinyl Siding

Use a cleaner that is specifically formulated for vinyl. These are usually mild and designed to tackle common stains found on vinyl siding without causing discoloration.

For Brick and Stone

Opt for soaps that are made for tougher surfaces. These often have stronger cleaning agents that can handle the porous textures of brick and stone without leaving residues.

For Wood Siding

Choose a soap that is gentle and intended for wood. These formulations help remove dirt without stripping away natural oils or causing the wood to swell and warp.

How to Use Soap in Pressure Washing

Using soap effectively while pressure washing siding involves a few key steps:

Step 1: Prepare the Area

Before starting, make sure all windows are closed, and cover any delicate plants or decorations near the siding. Remove any loose dirt with a simple hose-down.

Step 2: Mix the Soap Solution

Follow the manufacturer’s instructions to mix the appropriate amount of soap with water in your pressure washer’s detergent tank.

Step 3: Apply the Soap

Start from the bottom of the siding and work your way up. Applying soap from the top down can cause streaks as the soap drips.

Step 4: Let It Sit

Allow the soap to sit on the siding for 5 to 10 minutes. Avoid letting it dry completely as this can leave residue.

Step 5: Rinse Thoroughly

Rinse the siding with clean water from the top down to ensure all soap is removed, preventing streaks and residue.


Using soap with a pressure washer for the siding can be very helpful. It increases the overall cleaning of the water and additionally helps in protecting the siding. Choosing the suitable soap and knowing how to apply it will quickly make your exterior look fresh and clean like the day it was put together. For consumers who would rather have a professional do the work, JD Power Washing offers specialty, safe power washing services to help maintain and beautify your home. Find out more at JD Power Washing online, and let us help you maintain a presentable, inviting outdoor home space.


Yes, using soap would increase the cleaning power of the pressure washing process, so the efficiency in removing dirt, grime, and persistent dirt marks will be greater.

Soap allows for the better breakdown and dissolution of hardened stains, ensuring the prolongation of life for the siding by enabling the thorough elimination of harmful substances, with the existence of environmentally friendly alternatives.

Soap acts as a surfactant that lowers the surface tension of the water and can wet dirt well and lift it off more effectively.

How do I safely apply Murphy Oil Soap to my vinyl siding?

In sections of the carpet, apply the diluted solution and gently rub the surface using a soft brush or sponge.

No, avoid that. Use a soap made for the particular kind of siding you have — vinyl, wood, brick, etc. — so it doesn’t harm your siding and gives you the best cleaning possible.

Close the windows, cover delicate plants or decorations, and wash loose dirt with a hose.

Apply soap solution on the glass from bottom to top to prevent smearing. Allow it to stay on the surface for 5 to 10 minutes, making sure not to dry.

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