How to Clean James Hardie Siding

James Hardie fiber cement siding is an excellent product that gives your home fantastic curb appeal and adds to your resale value.  An additional benefit of their ColorPlus Technology is the 15-year finish warranty.  Most homes require repainting every 3 to 5 years so a 15-year finish warranty means huge cost savings!  Having a low-maintenance exterior is wonderful, but low maintenance doesn’t mean maintenance free.  Along with installing beautiful siding on your home, we want to help you keep that siding beautiful for as long as possible.  When you regularly clean James Hardie siding, you are ensuring it will last for years to come.

Whether you’re removing dirt, grease or mildew from your James Hardie siding, we’ve gathered the tools, solutions, and methods you need to keep your siding clean as a whistle.

HOW TO CLEAN SIDING

Below are some of the biggest causes of dirty siding and how to best clean them to get your home looking its absolute best.

THE CULPRIT: DIRT

Tools:
Big storms and windy days pick up dust and dirt that can cling to your home siding. To clean the muck from your home’s exterior siding without scrubbing, you’ll want a soft cloth, a soft brush (such as an All Paint poly brush, a chip brush or a horsehair bench brush), and a garden hose. Be sure not to use a hard metal brush or abrasive sponge—these can damage the siding’s finish.

Solution:
Water

Method:
If using a brush, brush the siding’s surface dust or dirt, then rinse the area with a garden hose. If using a soft cloth, wet the cloth, then wipe the area in a side to side motion in the direction of the plank, shingle or panel siding until clean. From there, rinse the area with clean water.

Pro tip:
Top to bottom: Work a small section at a time, start from the top and work your way down to prevent dripping or streaking onto the cleaned area.

House with freshly cleaned and renovated siding

THE CULPRIT: OIL, GREASE OR OTHER ORGANIC CONTAMINANTS

Tools:
Oil-covered hands and greasy fingers can make their way to your home’s siding, in which case you’ll want to grab a soft cloth and a garden hose.

Solution:
Mild liquid dishwashing soap and water.

Method:
Grab your soft cloth and saturate it with soapy water. Clean the stained siding while rinsing your cloth frequently. Once the siding is completely sudsed up, use a garden hose to rinse the area.

Pro tip:
Keep Wet: Do not allow soap or cleaners to dry on the siding. Instead, continually rinse the area until all of the soap has washed off of the siding.

A clean and shiny fibercement siding house against a light blue background

THE CULPRIT: MOLD AND MILDEW

Tools:
Mildew can resemble dirt at times, so when it comes time to clean your siding, be sure to inspect the planks, panels or shingles. If you land on any mold or mildew, you’ll need a soft cloth (or soft sponge) and a garden hose.

Solution:
Mildew-specific cleaner and water.

Method:
Lightly scrub the area that shows any signs of mildew and be sure to carefully follow the mildew cleaner instructions. From there, use the garden hose to rinse the area.

Pro tip:
Take care with chemicals: If you’re opting to use a stronger chemical to clean your siding, be sure to read the instructions and use caution as they can damage the finish on the siding.

Fiber cement siding panel with a wood grain texture and a natural brown color

 

With just a small investment of time, and a little bit of effort, it’s easy to clean James Hardie siding and keep your home looking brand new year after year. 

Do you have a worn or leaking roof? Are you looking for advice or assistance with your next roof repair or replacement job? Contact L.H. Krueger and Son, Milwaukee’s home exterior repair experts.

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