Pressure washers are useful to an extent but not everyone has one on hand or wants to use a pressure washer near more fragile features like gardens. No matter what you’re reasoning is, you have plenty of options to ensure that your sidewalk and concrete patios stay in top shape. Keep reading and we’ll go over a few ways you can clean a sidewalk without a pressure washer!
Do You Need a Pressure Washer to Clean a Concrete Patio or Sidewalk?
Definitely not! You can absolutely clean your sidewalk, concrete patio without pressure washing. Keep reading and we’ll look at ways of cleaning concrete without turning to a pressure washer.
What You’ll Need to Clean a Sidewalk Without a Pressure Washer:
- Since we’re specifically talking about outdoor concrete surfaces like concrete patios and sidewalks, outdoor bleach is the best choice for this.
- Pump sprayer
- A one-gallon pump sprayer will work just fine here although, of course, you’ll need a larger quantity of cleaner for larger areas.
- Garden hose
How to Clean a Sidewalk Without a Pressure Washer
Step 1: Sweep Your Sidewalk
The first thing you’ll want to do is remove loose dirt and debris from the area. You can do this by sweeping the sidewalk with a deck brush or broom for a quick cursory cleaning before getting started.
This step will help make sure that you clean your concrete patio or sidewalk effectively without any debris blocking your cleaning solution.
Step 2: Create the Cleaning Solution
You can’t just start spraying down your sidewalk with bleach. Instead, you’ll need to dilute it to create a diluted solution.
Luckily, all you have to do is mix the bleach with water. For the best ratio, mix it at a 2:1 ratio of water to bleach. Then, just add the bleach solution to the pump sprayer.
Step 3: Spray Down Your Sidewalk
Now, you’re ready to saturate your sidewalk with the solution with your spray bottle. Remember, for the best results in tackling problems like rust stains and even just dirt and grime, you’ll want to saturate the entire surface of the concrete.
Step 4: Let it Sit
At this point, you just have to let the solution sit on your sidewalk. Since this is a bleach solution, it’s a good idea to make sure that you keep pets and children away while the solution sits and while you’re working.
In general, you’ll want to let the solution dry on the concrete although you can get away with waiting around 20 minutes before the next step.
Step 5: Hose the Sidewalk Down
Finally, all you have to do is take a garden hose and spray the sidewalk or concrete patio down. With this method, you hopefully shouldn’t have to break out the scrub brush and elbow grease for removing tough stains.
Clean a Sidewalk with Vinegar
Step 1: Mixing the Vinegar Solution
Vinegar is a great natural cleaning solution. Still, for the best results, you’ll want to mix it into a cleaning solution that’s equal parts water and white vinegar.
Step 2: Start Scrubbing
Now that you have your vinegar solution, you can start to tackle tough stains on your sidewalk. If you’re having trouble, using the vinegar solution with a stiff scrub brush can help scrub tough stains out.
How to Clean a Sidewalk with Muriatic Acid
Step 1: Get Prepared
Muriatic acid is a strong chemical that is great for tackling stains and even brightening up your concrete. While useful, you want to make sure that you’re using this chemical safely.
So, before you get started, put on protective equipment like gloves before getting started. You should also hydrate the area with a hose.
Step 2: Dilute the Acid
Since muriatic acid is so strong, you’ll need to dilute it. Pay attention to the instructions on the bottle but generally, start with a generous 50:1 solution of water to muriatic acid and don’t move higher than a 20:1 ratio.
Step 3: Clean and Rinse
Once you have the solution ready, you can use a pump sprayer to saturate the concrete with the solution. Since it brightens the concrete, use this for thorough cleaning over spot cleaning. After you’re done and you’ve let it sit for a while, just rinse it with a garden hose.
How to Clean a Sidewalk with Concrete Cleaner
Step 1: Turn to Concrete Cleaner
Like many other cleaning tasks around your house, there are actually cleaners – like this one – that are made to clean concrete. These concrete cleaners typically tackle common tough stains including rust, grease, and more.
Step 2: Cleaning with Concrete Cleaner
To use this type of cleaner without a power washer, you’ll need to dilute it as the packaging describes. Then, you can saturate your concrete patio or sidewalk with it and scrub it with a soft-bristle broom or brush. When you’re done, just rinse it off with your hose.
What are the Best Ways to Clean Stains Off a Concrete Patio Using Household Cleaners?
You don’t necessarily have to go out and buy a special stain remover when you want a clean patio. As we’ve seen, there are some household items that can make for powerful cleaning supplies.
We’ve already discussed that outdoor bleach and vinegar can help. Alternatively, you can create a mixture of a few drops of liquid dish detergent plus equal parts water and baking soda. This is a quick, effective cleaning solution for tackling all sorts of stains.
How Do You Clean a Patio Without a Pressure Washer or Hose?
We’ve gone over a few different ways that you can ditch the pressure washer when you’re cleaning your concrete patio. However, what are your options if you don’t want to use a hose either?
Technically, you can forego a hose in any of these tutorials. All you really need is water to rinse your sidewalk off when you’re done cleaning. If you don’t have a hose, you can rinse the concrete by pouring water over it from a container.
Can You Clean a Concrete Driveway Without a Pressure Washer?
Yes! The good news is that you can clean your concrete driveway in much the same way that you would clean your concrete floors, sidewalks, patio concrete, and more! You can use any of the methods we’ve discussed here – from outdoor bleach to white vinegar to special cleaning products for cleaning concrete – for your concrete driveway as well.
How Do You Clean a Concrete Patio Without Killing the Grass?
Naturally, you don’t want your clean your concrete at the cost of killing your grass. Skipping the pressure washer is a good starting place because it’s not as harsh.
To avoid chemical damage to your grass, start by turning to a natural cleaner. An option like bleach or muriatic acid are harsher than an option like white vinegar and the former are both more likely to cause damage to the grass.
Clean concrete doesn’t have to hinge on the use of a pressure washer. With this guide, you can have a clean concrete patio or sidewalk without ever touching a power washer. Did you like these ideas? If so, let us know in the comments below and share this tutorial with a friend!