Out of all the parts of your home, no other part gets quiet the daily workout that your driveway does. Just think for a second about how much you use your driveway every day and what you would do without it.
First and foremost, your driveway provides safe passage to the street for both your car and you. Without a driveway, your car would drive through gravel or mud and grass to get to your garage, potentially damaging your car and getting it dirty every day. Whenever you had to go and grab the mail, you couldn’t just quickly walk down barefoot to your mailbox.
Your kids too would lose one of their favorite and safest play places. How many times have they drawn hopscotch squares on it or ridden in circles on their bikes around it? Where would they put their lemonade stands if not at the foot of your driveway. On warm summer evenings, how many times have you stood in your driveway chatting with neighbors while your kids played together?
The driveway also contributes to your home’s curb appeal, and if you’re trying or thinking about selling your home, curb appeal makes the first impression on prospective buyers. If they see a dirty driveway, it can ruin the effect that your well-manicured lawn and flower beds are trying to evoke. A clean driveway can give your home’s value a slight boost, and at the very least, it won’t detract from the value.
The point is that your driveway is an important part of your home and its appeal. Like every other part of your home, it needs to be kept clean and in good condition. That means hiring a pressure washer professional to get the job done — and get it done right.
Now many people out there like to do home-improvement jobs themselves, and if HGTV has taught us anything, it therefore must be incredibly easy to just pressure wash a driveway yourself, right?
Not so much. A lot can go wrong if you try to pressure wash your driveway yourself, and it doesn’t always save you money in the long or short term. If your driveway is dirty and in need of a good cleaning, the best thing you can do is hire a professional pressure washer for your driveway. Here’s why.
Why do-it-yourself is not always best
Some do-it-yourselfers (DIYers) like to take on all home improvement jobs, even the ones that should be left to professionals. Pressure washing the driveway is one of those.
Right away, there’s the upfront problem of cost. Some pressure washers can cost only a few hundred dollars, but those won’t do anything for your driveway. You need at least a medium but probably more like a heavy-duty power washer that will blast away driveway stains as well as dirt and insects. Those washers aren’t cheap, and the ones that are cheap aren’t of the best quality. The better models will cost close to $1,000, and that’s not including the fuel costs you’ll need to keep it running and any costs that occur when you need to fix it.
You might think that renting is a better solution because most places will charge only about $100 for the rental. This may seem okay upfront, but considering all the time spent to do the job yourself, you pay more that way. If by any chance you don’t do a good job the first time, it will cost you another $100 to rent the pressure washer again.
Pressure washing a driveway isn’t as easy as just pointing a high-powered hose and spraying the driveway. If the pressure is too low, which often happens with non-commercial washers, you will spend hours trying to spray the dirt off your driveway. If you’re too close or the pressure is too high, you could also damage your driveway if you spray at a crack or at a weak part of the concrete.
With a professional pressure washer, you don’t have to worry about any of these potential problems. They bring their own equipment, and they know the right settings and distance to use on your driveway. They also know how to pressure wash safely without damaging your driveway or nearby plants and flower beds that could be accidentally sprayed. All you have to do is sit back and relax.
Time is money
What many homeowners don’t realize is that pressure washing a driveway can take quickly turn into an all-day event, and in the long run, it often doesn’t save any time or money. Doing the pressure washing yourself usually means giving up a Saturday or Sunday, and when you work full time, the last thing you want to do on your weekends is work some more.
If you don’t buy a pressure washer — and really, you probably shouldn’t unless you have the cash lying around — then you’ll need to rent one from a hardware store or a big-box store like Lowe’s or Home Depot. During the warmer months in Houston, other homeowners probably have the same idea as you: they too want their driveways looking nice. If so many people are renting power washers, then you may have to wait before one is available. Essentially, you have to be on someone else’s time, not yours.
There’s also the time and energy of having to go to the store to pick up or drop off the washer. That can mean standing in a long line or hunting through the store to find an associate who can help you. You will also need a sizable vehicle to transport the power washer back home, and if you only have one big vehicle like an SUV or a pick-up truck, you need to make sure your spouse won’t need it when you do.
Then once you get it home, you have to figure out how to work the pressure washer and finally do the work. But even then, you’re still not done because then you have to return it to the store. Someone else is likely waiting to rent it, so if you spend too much time driving to or from the store and can’t get the pressure washer to work right away, you might not have time to do a good job yourself.
On top of all that, you will have to clean and refuel the pressure washer before returning it, which is just more work for you.
All of this is all a lot of time and effort on your part, and a lot could go wrong. If you hire a professional pressure washer, they’ll handle everything for you, and you can spend your weekend relaxing by the pool or cooling down in your garage.
How bad pressure washing can cause infestations
As you probably know, insects love to hide out in the cracks and crevices of your home, and that includes your driveway as well. But if your driveway is outside anyway, does it matter if you have pests such as spiders or ants living in the cracks of your driveway?
In short, yes it does matter if you have a lot of insects living in the cracks and crevices of your driveway because your driveway leads right to your garage and the inside of your home. If you see ants making a home on your driveway, it’s only a matter of time before they start moving farther into your home.
Professional pressure washers are well versed in the types of insects that live around driveways, and they know what to look for. They might be able to spot a problem before you do. They’ll also be checking areas around your driveway and near your garage, spraying any insects out along the way.
Hire a professional — in pressure washing
For most homes, driveways need one good pressure washing per year. This will remove stains that have developed over the past year and help remove insects and other pests that have made homes around the driveway. Regular cleanings will also help the concrete of your driveway last longer. It’s definitely an investment to have to pour new concrete on your driveway, but if you take care of it and pressure wash it each year, it should last longer and look nicer.