With a striking resemblance to natural wood, vinyl fences make a great addition to any property. They look beautiful, offer excellent privacy, and take little time to install. Still, despite being easier to maintain than their wood counterparts, vinyl fences—especially white vinyl fences—get dirty and require a little maintenance.
Luckily, you can clean vinyl easily and quickly if you know what to do. Follow this guide on how to keep a vinyl fence clean step by step to get your fence shining like new!
Need a new fence or a little help maintaining the one you have in place now? Contact Gulf to Bay Fence, the number one fence contractor in St. Petersburg, FL.
Options for Cleaning a Vinyl Fence
You can clean vinyl fences in various ways, thanks to their impressive durability. Let’s review some of your options.
Spray the Fence With a Garden Hose
Regardless of what kind of stain you’re dealing with, you should always opt to spray the fence with a hose first, as it’s easy and inexpensive. This will loosen dirt, mold, and other debris with ease and not damage your fence in the slightest. Use a higher-pressure nozzle to attack stubborn stains. This step is all you need to tackle fence grime in many cases.
Use a Magic Eraser or Similar Product
While intended for the walls and appliances in your home, these products clean vinyl exceptionally well. This might not work for more heavy-duty stains, but for anything light—like pollen, dust, and dirt—this step can save you a lot of time.
To clean effectively:
- Get the eraser wet, squeezing out excess water
- Wipe the fence, working from top to bottom
- Remove dirty bits of the eraser as you clean, continuing until the fence sparkles
Utilize Household Cleaning Solutions
Using a homemade solution offers a great way to keep a vinyl fence clean. Using this method will attack the crevices in your fence more effectively. For this method:
- Combine a small amount of dish soap or white vinegar with a gallon of warm water
- Slosh the water around until everything is mixed and sudsy
- Use an old towel or rag to dip in the solution and scrub at your fence
- Use a non-abrasive scrubber on any persistent stains
If the above steps don’t work, it’s time to rely on something more powerful. Bleach, volatile as it is, can seriously damage vinyl. However, if you take care and water down the bleach solution, you shouldn’t have any problems. Still, if you have a non-white vinyl fence, you might want to avoid bleach, as it can fade the colors.
Like the other methods about keeping a vinyl fence clean, mix the bleach with a gallon of water. You should aim for one part bleach per five parts water. Wear rubber or other protective gloves to keep yourself safe or utilize a pump sprayer, so you don’t have to make contact with the solution.
This should work just about every time. To learn more about vinyl fencing, check out Gulf to Bay Fence’s website.
Use a Specialized Cleaner
Iron and mold stains typically give vinyl fence owners the most difficulty. If you notice red iron stains, opt for a cleaner made for vinyl fences. You can find one online or at your local fence installer’s store, like Gulf to Bay Fence.
Xylene cleaners work exceptionally well for any persistent problem. It’s challenging to find a more powerful cleaner on the market.
Use a Pressure Washer
Power and pressure washers work wonders on fences of all types, especially if you wonder how to keep a vinyl fence clean. They will cut through dirt and grease like paper, saving you the effort of scrubbing away—sometimes to no avail—by hand.
Still, not all pressure washers bring the same results. You will find different styles, like gas and electric, and you’ll want to keep some other attributes in mind, such as:
- PSI (pounds per square inch)
- GPM (gallons per minute)
- Different nozzles
- Different cleaning solutions you can load alongside water
You could spend days researching pressure washers, but we recommend using something between 2,000 and 2,800 PSI for the most effective wash.
Attack Dirt Preemptively
As the famous saying goes, “the best offense is a good defense.” If you maintain your vinyl fence weekly, spraying it down about as often as you mow your lawn, you will less likely have to resort to heavy-duty cleaning methods. Pair your routine washing with soap once every few weeks to keep dirt from collecting.
If you have mildew and mold problems, consider a protective coating for vinyl fences. Mold stains are some of the toughest to remove, so you want to be proactive, especially if you have a history of mold problems.
Add a Layer of Paint
If you’ve cleaned your fence but aren’t entirely pleased with the results—perhaps the fence faded due to years of dirt buildup—you can add another layer of paint to restore the fence’s aged appearance completely. Start with an acrylic binder, let it dry, then apply a layer or two of color with a brush or roller.
Contact the Professionals for Flawless Cleaning and Refurbishing
If you’ve tried everything and are still wondering how to keep a vinyl fence clean, consider reaching out to a professional fence company that can safely and effectively restore your fence to its old luster.
Call Gulf to Bay Fence at (727) 513-6763 today to learn more about vinyl fence maintenance and get a yard fencing guide for dogs. Get your fence looking years younger in no time at all!