Before power washing patio pavers, it is important that you make sure any leaves on the patio have been removed. You will also want to remove any soiled furniture or clutter on the patio as this can cause damage to the surface during the cleaning process. In addition, you should sweep or vacuum up any loose dirt, dust, and debris off of the surface in order to eliminate any potential stains or discoloration of your pavers after they are washed.
Check for ant hills on the patio. Ants leave behind an acidic, oily residue when they are crushed. If you power wash over this acidic fluid, it will cause discoloration of your pavers (the exact damage depends on the type of stone used in the paper). If you find any ant hills, be sure to move them off of your patio before proceeding with power washing.
Rinse the patio once all loose debris is removed. Rinse with a garden hose to remove any leftover dirt or dust that may have been missed. This will ensure that there is no grime left after sweeping and avoid stains later down the line.
Once your pavers are thoroughly cleaned and from loose particles, allow them to dry completely.
Now is the time to power wash your pavers! Use a quality pressure washer and high-pressure heads in order to get into all of the crevices and fine details on your patio. Power washing will clean off grime, sand, and other debris that may be left on your patio from foot traffic or general weathering. It will also remove dirt and grease stains if they are present. If you have any stubborn stains left after power washing (like rust), use a poultice to remove them.
When using a solution on bare pavers, add 2 ounces of cleaner per gallon of water for an average-sized driveway or deck. For small patios, use 1 ounce of cleaner per gallon of water.
Once the pavers are thoroughly cleaned, rinse them off with a garden hose and allow them to dry completely. This process will remove any minerals that may have been left behind by the cleaning solution and improve the glossiness of your patio when they dry. Now is also a good time to prime your pavers if you plan on painting them in the future.
Power washing can usually be done on driveways and patios without an issue however it is important to note that this method should not be used around any plants or trees. The high pressure could damage nearby foliage so be sure to move anything in close proximity before power washing your patio or driveway. Check with local laws regarding pressure washing sidewalks and patios in your town or state before beginning this project.
If you want to use a poultice on your pavers, do so now. A poultice is a paste-like mixture that removes stains from stone and concrete. If you have stubborn dirt or rust stains on your pavers, this may be beneficial as well as easier than using chemicals as it does not require power washing afterward.
Now that your patio is clean and free of any damage (due to debris or chemical residue), you can safely seal or stain your pavers with any product that is recommended for the type of stone used in your pavers.