how to pressure wash when cannot see where you have been

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Old 04-02-17, 09:17 PM
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how to pressure wash when cannot see where you have been

Hi

Have a slate deck with random pattern so there are no grout lines extending from edge to edge. And it gets covered with pollen in the spring. And I try to pressure wash. The pressure washer does remove the pollen but...

Once the slate is wet and without any grout or other lines edge to edge and since pollen is spotty not uniform, I cannot see what I have done. I cannot overlap this pass to the last pass. Hence when all done and dry I have missed a considerable amount.

So, how does one pressure wash if you cannot see the last pass and so cannot overlap?

Thank you.
 
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Old 04-03-17, 04:16 AM
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Wetting the patio and scrubbing it with a detergent prior to pressure washing may help. IMO keeping up with what you've hit with the wand isn't that big of a deal if you pay attention. You always want to overlap some.
 
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Old 04-03-17, 05:56 AM
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I like to apply a cleaner to the surface before pressure washing. I've had good luck with Clorox Outdoor Bleach which has bleach for killing mold and mildew and it also has soap to help remove stuck on dirt and pollen. I've also had decent luck with other soaps like diluted Simple Green and Purple Power which are better at removing grease and oils.

I use a fan tip. Then I pick some landmarks off to the side as a guide. I move in a straight line across making sure I keep the tip a constant distance away from the surface. Then, again referencing my landmark, I start the next row allowing a good overlap of the previous path. If you have a 50% overlap it gives you a lot of margin to be off and not have bare spots and if you do it right the surface gets hit twice because of the overlap. If you still have trouble keeping track of where you've been you can lay something down like a broom handle to act as a reference.
 
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Old 04-03-17, 06:14 AM
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I had forgotten some of the lower priced PWers come with an adjustable nozzle type tip If that is what you have, I'd replace it with fan tips ... maybe even a turbo nozzle if needed.
 
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Old 04-03-17, 07:06 AM
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I second Marksr's suggestion for a turbo nozzle. They clean a wider area faster, and it's easier to overlap passes so you don't miss areas.
 
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Old 04-03-17, 07:29 AM
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how does one pressure wash if you cannot see the last pass and so cannot overlap?
Years ago I was playing pairs darts in a local bar,
I was paired with a girl who just could not aim. She actually had an accurate throw,
(had played softball etc.) but always hit the same spot.
We won, because the trick was for her to move 6" to the right to HIT 6" to the right.

Same thing here. Normal range of motion is about 3' wide, normal step back is about 6".
So, clear everything off the deck, and clean it as several 3' wide "lanes".
Start at the edge of the deck, clean about a 6" wide strip.
Take a step back. Clean that 6" strip, repeat. Don't fall off the deck.
 
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Old 04-03-17, 08:16 AM
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Thank you. Will try all ideas above.
 
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Old 04-03-17, 09:49 AM
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Don't fall off the deck
Worth repeating! It's easy to get 'zoned' in and forget about your surroundings. Back in the 70's I painted a chicken coop roof that was almost a 1/4 mile long. More than once I caught my self fixin' to step back into thin air while I was spraying
 
 

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