How to Clean Wood Siding? (5 Things To Avoid)

The primary purpose of the wood siding is to protect the wall from exterior elements, insulate the home and create aesthetic appeal. Wood siding is easier to install, maintain and environmentally friendly. 

There are many siding materials available in the market that are more durable and cheaper than wood but they do not have the real texture and color of solid wood.

A wood siding can last about 25 to 30 years with regular maintenance, but the durability of the siding depends on the quality, species of the wood, and maintenance. 

We are going to explain some simple steps to clean sliding so that you can increase the durability and enhance the appearance.

Note: This is a method for cleaning wood siding, not vinyl siding. The cleaning method of vinyl siding and natural wood siding is quite different. So follow the proper instructions.

Things You’ll Need

  • Spray bottle
  • A soft-bristled brush or a sponge
  • Vinegar or Mild soap or a quality siding cleaner
  • Protective eyewear and gloves
  • Ladder
  • Optional: a bucket, a scraper, and a putty knife

Step: 1 Prepare the Siding For Cleaning

Before we go to clean, we need to prepare the siding for cleaning. These are some checkpoints that you should do.

  • Close doors and windows properly so that water cannot enter during cleaning.
  • Remove the electrical wire that is in contact with the siding.
  • Cover/remove the electric switches, lamps, and all those things that can be damaged by contact with water.
  • Remove any loose dirt or debris from the siding using a soft bristle brush or broom.
  • Wet the siding, and wait 5 minutes, so the stains can be easily cleaned.

Step: 2 Prepare Cleaning Solution

Make a solution containing 75% water and 25% white vinegar. Do not use direct vinegar anywhere, vinegar can ruin your siding, so dilute the vinegar by adding the proper amount of water to it.

This solution is better for light and moderate mildew stains, but if you find that the siding has a lot of mold, you can make a solution with 70% water and 30% vinegar.

If you are using a mild soap or detergent, mix according to the manufacturer’s instructions.

Step: 3 Start From Top To Bottom

Dip a soft cloth or sponge or a soft brush into the cleaning solution and wring it out until it is only slightly damp. Working from top to bottom, wipe the siding with a cloth or sponge, using circular motions to remove dirt and grime.

In areas where there is more accumulation of dirt, there is a need to rub more with a brush. Be careful not to rub too much, otherwise, you can damage the paint or stain.

If any part of the siding is damaged or rotted, replace or repair it, otherwise, this rot can damage other parts of the siding as well.

Step: 4 Let the Siding Dry

Once you’ve finished, allow it to dry completely before applying any sealant or paint. This will help ensure that the siding is completely protected and will last for many years.

If there are any stubborn stains or areas that are particularly dirty, you may need to use a stronger cleaning solution. Be sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions for any cleaning product or power washer that you use.

Rinse the siding with a garden hose to remove any remaining dirt and soap.

Things to Avoid When You’re Cleaning Wood Siding.

  • Don’t use a high-pressure washer, it can dent or damage your vinyl or wooden siding. If you only have the option of a pressure washer, set the pressure washer to the lowest pressure setting. And be careful not to get too close to the wood as the pressure of the washer can damage it.
  • Avoid using chemical-based detergents as these chemicals can discolor the stain and damage the grain.
  • Don’t rub too much in the same place.
  • Do not use straight vinegar as it can ruin the grain of the siding.
  • Remember to always test any cleaning solution on a small, inconspicuous area of the siding before applying it to the entire surface. This will help you ensure that the solution does not cause any damage or discoloration.


Cleaning siding can be a difficult task if you have never worked on any DIY projects before. Being at this height can also be a danger for you. When you are sure to do this task then do, otherwise hire an expert siding cleaner.