Can A Pressure Washer Damage Concrete?

can a pressure washer damage concreteMany people think of concrete as an impenetrable surface but this is not always the case. It can be damaged by using a pressure washers and this will be something that you will be keen to avoid. However, the reason that pressure washers are so popular is because they are very effective at cleaning pathways and driveways. There are certain factors that can have an impact on how likely it is that your concrete will be damaged by a pressure washer.

1. Quality Of Concrete

The quality of the concrete that you are washing will perhaps have the largest role to play in determining whether it becomes damaged. Generally speaking, lower quality concrete will absorb water more easily through tiny holes in the surface and this water can do a lot of damage once it is inside the concrete as it will weaken it further. It is not always easy to tell how good your concrete is just by looking at it but you may be able to get a professional to come out and look at it so you have an idea of just how careful you need to be with a pressure washer.

2. Age Of Concrete

Using a pressure washer on concrete that is less than a year old is probably not a good idea. While the concrete will still be stable it may not have bonded together as much as it can do. If you have only had your concrete down for a short period then it is unlikely that it will be dirty enough to need to be pressure washed anyway.

3. How the Pressure Washer is Used

Damage can be caused when the pressure washer is not operated in the right way. Some pressure washers spray water with a force that is equivalent to 6000lbs and so some care does need to be taken. It can help if you choose a nozzle that distributes the water that is sprayed evenly rather than focusing it in just one spot.

4. Frequency Of Cleaning

When the concrete is cleaned excessively, then the chance of it becoming damaged increases. When you first purchase a pressure washer you may need to give the concrete a good clean to remove all the years of dirt and grime that have built up there. However, after this it may be another year or so before you need to do it again. There is no point washing it every week just for the sake of it as this can increase how damaged your concrete becomes.

When you are deciding whether to clean concrete with a pressure washer you will need to assess how likely it is that damage will occur and then make a decision based on this assessment.

If you have any doubts about whether the concrete that you want to clean would stand up to any potential damage that a pressure washer would cause, then you may want to look at an alternative method for cleaning. Using water that has low pressure and a mild detergent can still produce good results.

2 Comments

  1. Dick Panozzo August 4, 2017
    • Jason Wilson August 5, 2017

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