COVID19, commonly known as coronavirus, has spread quickly across the United States. Agent Clean and many other cleaning contractors have been working to help fight the spread of the disease by offering sanitation services for outdoor seating, restaurants, playgrounds, shopping carts and more.
Softwashing Sanitizes COVID19
The CDC states that household disinfectants such as bleach are effective at treating and sanitizing coronavirus. We use a stronger concentration for soft washing. We can clean patios, playgrounds, siding and roofs using a soft washing method that not only helps remove dirt, cobwebs, mold and mildew, but also sanitizes the surface.
We're also able to offer sanitizing services to commercial clients. We have several locations sanitizing carts at local grocery stores with a food-safe, no-rinse sanitizer. While carts can be contaminated when someone touches them, this helps eliminate the build up of germs and bacteria on the carts.
We can also use this sanitizer on non-porous seating and playground equipment to help eliminate germs and bacteria.
What You Can Do
You can also be proactive at home to clean and disinfect surfaces. First, note the difference between cleaning and sanitizing. Cleaning is removing contaminants such as dirt, grease, grime, etc. The second stage is sanitizing microbes.
From the CDC website:
- If surfaces are dirty, they should be cleaned using a detergent or soap and water prior to disinfection.
- For disinfection, diluted household bleach solutions, alcohol solutions with at least 70% alcohol, and most common EPA-registered household disinfectants should be effective.
- Diluted household bleach solutions can be used if appropriate for the surface. Follow manufacturer’s instructions for application and proper ventilation. Check to ensure the product is not past its expiration date. Never mix household bleach with ammonia or any other cleanser. Unexpired household bleach will be effective against coronaviruses when properly diluted.
- Prepare a bleach solution by mixing:
- 5 tablespoons (1/3rd cup) bleach per gallon of water or
- 4 teaspoons bleach per quart of water
- Products with EPA-approved emerging viral pathogens claimsexternal icon are expected to be effective against COVID-19 based on data for harder to kill viruses. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for all cleaning and disinfection products (e.g., concentration, application method and contact time, etc.).
- For soft (porous) surfaces such as carpeted floor, rugs, and drapes, remove visible contamination if present and clean with appropriate cleaners indicated for use on these surfaces. After cleaning:
- If the items can be laundered, launder items in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions using the warmest appropriate water setting for the items and then dry items completely.
- Otherwise, use products with the EPA-approved emerging viral pathogens claims that are suitable for porous surfaces
You can read more about procedures and tips from the CDC regarding COVID19 here.
If you are interested in commercial or outdoor cleaning and sanitation services, find an Agent Clean location near you and give us a call for a free estimate.
Benefits of Power Washing
Dirt is everywhere, and for home owners it’s a nuisance. For cleaners, it’s a dream. Power washing is the chosen method for cleaning dirt, grime, pollution, and oil off of hard surfaces like concrete. There are several benefits to hiring a power washing service.
This is one of the easiest benefits to notice - curb appeal! Blasting away the dirt build up is an easy way to make your home look better. Rain easily distributes mud onto walkways and patios, and over time the mud dries and just cakes onto the concrete. Surface cleaners and pressure wands make short work of dirt build up.
Grease and grime from shoes also builds up over time. You notice this especially on well-worn walking paths and entry ways. The black discoloration can be cleaned up to make your entry way look new.
Mold is another element that can build up in concrete. Mold grows into the pores of the concrete, and the longer it is left untreated or uncleaned, the harder it is to eradicate. Mold also retains moisture and becomes slick when wet. This makes it a slipping hazard during and after rainfall. Be careful when walking on concrete overgrown with mold.
Soft Washing and Sealing
While power washing is an option to remove mold, we recommend having the concrete treated with a soft washing method. Soft washing uses low pressure and a cleaning solution as opposed to high pressure water. The soft washing solution contains a small percentage of sodium hypochlorite, or essentially chlorine, that kills the mold and releases its bond on the concrete. Light pressure is then used to rinse the mold away. This method is ideal because it kills the mold and helps prevent regrowth. Since mold is spore-based, simply blasting off sends spores into the air, which resettle on the concrete and begin growing again. Soft washing is more reliable at stopping the mold from returning.
A surefire way to prevent mold regrowth is to have the concrete sealed. Concrete sealer fills in the pores of the concrete and helps prevent moisture from seeping through. Not only does sealing prevent mold growth, it protects the concrete and prevents cracks due to moisture. When water gets into the concrete and freezes, it expands, then contracts when the weather is warmer. This fluctuation causes micro fractures in the surface that often become larger cracks.
What can be power washed?
Power washing is a great solution to cleaning up hard surfaces around your home. Commonly, these are patios, sidewalks, and driveways. Power washing is also useful around pools, on retaining walls, and brick steps or entryways.
Find a pressure washer near you, or find a location of one of our Agent Clean services. Our technicians are trained, licensed and insured.
Commercial Curb Appeal
Managing a business comes with no small list of things to do on a regular basis. Exterior maintenance and cleaning is an important task to remember, as curb appeal directly influences how a customer feels about your business. Agent Clean specializes in both residential and commercial exterior cleaning. Here are a few of our most used services.
Commercial Cleaning - Pressure Washing
Sidewalks and Entryways: One of the quickest areas to become dirty and covered in grime is the sidewalk and entryway to your business, or a patio if its a restaurant. Agent Clean can wash and treat those areas to remove dirt, grease, and mold. Gum and rust removal service is also available.
Dumpster Pads: These are quick to become greasy and dirty, especially at restaurants. Agent Clean utilizes a powerful degreaser to remove oil and grease build up around dumpster pads, reducing slipping hazard and fire risk as well as keeping the area tidy.
Drive through: Banks and restaurants benefit from our drive through cleaning. We use a strong degreaser to remove oil and grime from the driving lanes, and rinse wash the canopy and pillars. This keeps your drive through lanes looking pristine and professional.
Commercial Cleaning - Window Washing
Agent Clean also offers routine window cleaning services. Windows, especially in restaurants and in entryways, quickly become smudged and dirty. Professional window cleaning is fast, high-quality, and leaves the windows sparkling.
Whatever business you have, routine maintenance is always best. By scheduling routine cleanings, your business benefits from clean exteriors and the process is generally faster because it’s performed on a regular basis. Give us a call for a free commercial cleaning service estimate.
If you’re looking to have your roof or siding cleaned up you’ve likely heard or seen the term “soft washing” a few times. Wondering what the fuss is about? Is it safe for your home? It can be off putting to learn that soft washing uses chemical solutions to do the cleaning instead of high pressure, but don’t worry, it’s not as bad or as dangerous as it sounds. In fact, you’re far less likely to have any damage from soft washing than you are with high pressure washing, and soft washing will get rid of mildew and those black streaks on the roof faster than traditional power washing.
Soft Washing FAQ
Q: How is soft washing different from power washing
A: Soft washing uses low pressure and a cleaning solution to gently wash siding. Power washing uses high pressure water to blast dirt, mold, and mildew from the surface and can cause physical damage to vinyl, brick, stucco, and other siding materials.
Q: What is in a soft washing solution?
A: Common soft washing solution contains mostly water and mild chlorination. The sodium hypochlorite found in the mix is what removes mold, mildew, algae, and other organic growths from the siding. Cleaning solutions often contain soap additives as well, such as surfactants and foaming agents to help the solution “cling” to the surface and work more efficiently.
Q: Will the chemicals in soft washing damage my yard or plants?
A: Soft washing contains only a small amount of sodium hypochlorite (SH), which is the compound that could cause harm to plants. Higher levels are found in roof washing mixtures, but care is taken to ensure the risk of damage is mitigated. SH damages plants by sucking nutrients from the plant and soil. The best way to prevent this is through water saturation. Plants can only absorb so much water at a time. By pre-rinsing and wetting the plants during the cleaning process, any SH that lands on the plant or on the ground is diluted to levels that are safe. Products such as Agent Halt are also used to neutralize any SH that could be harmful after the washing process.
Q: What are the benefits of soft washing over power washing?
A: While both methods can yield similar results, soft washing is overall a more efficient method of cleaning siding and roofs. When power washing a surface, full coverage is required to clean, which is time consuming due to the relatively narrow stream used when power washing. With soft washing, since the cleaning solution does the work, it allows for a wider coverage using either a misting or a wide fan spray. This means that soft washing is faster and uses less water to clean. Soft washing also eliminates mold, mildew, and algae where as power washing simply blasts the spores into the air.
Soft washing is widely considered the superior method of performing house washing services. Ask your cleaning company about the process to see if it is right for your home.
Soft Washing vs Power Washing
Best House Cleaning Service Method
Deciding to have your house siding cleaned is a big step for improving the appearance of your home, and there are often misconceptions on what a house wash service entails. Unlike plumbing or heating and cooling, having your house or roof cleaned is primarily to increase curb appeal.
Two Primary Pressure Washing Methods
There are two ways that a surface can be cleaned by pressure washing. The first method is high-pressure washing, also known as “power washing.” This is commonly used on concrete and other hard surfaces to remove dirt, grease, gum, and oil. Until recent years, this was the primary way to clean any surface, including roofs and siding.
Low-pressure washing, commonly referred to as “soft washing,” is a method that uses low pressure in conjunction with a cleaning solution to gently wash the surface. Various soaps and cleaning solutions are used in lieu of high pressure, making for a less volatile method of cleaning.
Soft washing versus Power Washing
The difference between soft washing and power washing may seem obvious, but some might assume that the difference is negligible since the outcome is the same: the removal of dirt, mold, and mildew. It’s true, the end result appears to be the same, but looks are deceptive.
In the midwest, mold and mildew are the most common growths on vinyl and stucco siding. They are spore-based parasites, spreading through the air and landing on various surfaces. They tend to prefer moisture and shade. When traditional power washing is used on a house, the spores are blasted into the air, settle, and begin to regrow. It isn’t uncommon for houses that have been power washed to have mold and mildew growing again within a matter of days or weeks.
Soft washing uses a mild chlorinated solution, around 1%, to kill the mold and mildew. This, coupled with low pressure water, essentially treats the siding and helps prevent regrowth by eradicating the problem. The solution is mild enough to not harm plants and animals, but strong enough to get rid of mold and mildew on siding.
Power washing also presents a risk to vinyl and stucco, as pounds per square inch (PSI) can be in the 3,000 to 5,000 range, high enough to put holes in your siding. Power washing also requires every square inch of the siding to be cleaned using a narrow stream. It is time consuming and expends a high volume of water.</p> <p>Soft washing uses much lower pressure, less than 1,000 PSI, and can be applied in a cone or fan, covering more area faster. This uses less water and takes far less time than traditional power washing. Add in the substantially reduced risk of damage to siding, soft washing is the clear choice when looking for a professional exterior house cleaning service.
The Best Residential Window Cleaning Service
Windows are sometimes a forgotten way of cleaning up a home’s appearance. Siding, roof, and concrete are often more noticeable, but windows help you enjoy the beautiful view around your home. Keeping your windows clean keep you happy and increase your home’s curb appeal.
Traditional Window Cleaning
Traditional window cleaning involves using a squeegee and applicator. The applicator applies a cleaning solution and the squeegee is used to wick the water from the window. In skilled hands, window cleaning is fast and efficient. It is best used on single story homes, and is one of the only methods for interior window cleaning.
Water Fed Pole
A more modern approach is fast becoming standard in the exterior cleaning industry. Water fed poles use pure water to clean windows. Pure water at Agent Clean is water with a total dissolved solids (TDS) rating of less than 10. For reference, tap water usually has between 100 and 200 TDS, depending on the source. Pure water attracts dirt and minerals to it. Streaks on windows are left by water that contains contaminants and solids. The Water fed pole scrubs the windows and then rinses in pure water, leaving a streak-free shine. This method can be used for up to four stories from the ground level.
Agent Clean offers the best residential window cleaning service. Find a location to request a free quote.
Pressure Washing Services
If you’re a homeowner, you know that taking care of one of your biggest investments is an important task. Your home is your castle, and the exterior should be as healthy as the interior. Our pressure washing services are ideal for cleaning up the hard surfaces around your home.
Concrete sidewalks and driveways are susceptible to oil stains, mold, and mildew. Agent Clean uses both soft washing and power washing methods to tackle concrete and hard surface cleaning.
If you have a concrete driveway, oil and grease will eventually stain your driveway. Whether you’re selling your home or just want to clean up the exterior, Agent Clean can get rid of the stains with ease. For oil and grease, surface cleaners and a quality degreaser is used to lift the stains the pressure wash the area.
Sidewalk Concrete Cleaning
Sidewalks often become overgrown with mold and mildew. For mold and mildew, the concrete can be soft wash treated first with a solution designed to eradicate the mold and mildew. Then a concrete sealer can be applied, filling in the porous surface of the concrete and inhibiting future growth.
Agent Clean offers a full suite of exterior cleaning options, including the best pressure washing service near you.