How to soft wash street-facing properties

March 28, 2018

We've been asked how to safely softwash street-facing properties while protecting the public from harm and conforming to the various regulations.

We thought many softwash contractors would value this information, which we hope will enable them to both get more softwash contracts and carry them out safely and legally.

We offer the following for general guidance only. Please do your own research into the factors, including regulations imposed by local councils, national government and other relevant legislative organisations, governing best practice on any given contract to softwash street facing properties.

Our best suggestions for how to softwash street facing properties:

  • Use Benz softwash spray nozzles to minimise spray drift, especially in windy conditions.

  • Place “spotters” on all corners of workplace to spot hazards arising, including general public, children and animals attempting to gain access to the working area.

  • Use a Water Fed Brush instead of a spray nozzle if conditions are too windy or there's too great a danger of chemicals migrating outside of the required application area.

  • Use a Cherry Picker or Scissors Lift to access elevations that are beyond the reach of Water Fed Pole IWFP) technology.

  • Scaffold higher areas and sheet off.

  • Ensure applicable permits are obtained from the council and other relevant authorities to block pedestrian and vehicle access.

  • Barrier off the area in which there is any possibility of the public being exposed to chemical spray or run-off.

  • Erect hazard warning signs in all appropriate places.

  • Schedule work for early and late in the day, and/or weekends when the numbers of general public will be less and commercial premises will be closed.

Quick tip: Benz Lightning Cleanze can save time and money over sodium hypochlorate (SH) mixes by not having to catch run-off in containers that are then incinerated at considerable cost. This is possible because according to EU legislation Lightning Cleanze is non-classified and non-corrosive  at the dilution levels we recommend on the product labelling and on the Benz Softwash website. It is also fully approved by the UK and Irish governments, unlike all SH that we know of.

The run-off must of course be diverted to a foul drain and kept away from surface drains. And permission should be obtained from the relevant water authority to discharge waste chemicals into the drainage system (again, regs can change between water authorities, so please check what is required for the area you are working in).

Source further information: Regulations and procedures may differ country to country, city to city, council to council. So a contractor would be well advised to contact their local council to get clear on their specific regulations and working guidelines. Also, a friendly scaffolding company will have come across the issues of working in streets already and would know what regs have to be complied with and how.

We hope you found this information helpful.


Ben, Leo & Fiona

PS: Regulations are constantly changing and the information given above is correct to the best of our knowledge at the time of writing; but please check with the authorities responsible for enforcing regulations for specific contracts before you softwash a street facing property.

Explore the full range of Benz popular softwash cleaning products

Benz Softwash Bio Cleanze DDAC biocide & Benz Softwash Lightning Cleanze SH sodium hypochlorite biocide

Also in Benz Trade Tips

Soft washing pebbledash (dry dash) wall render
How to soft wash pebble dash (dry dash) wall render with Bio Cleanze

June 24, 2020

In this video Ben demonstrates how to treat pebble dash (aka "dry dash") render with Benz Bio Cleanze. The render will become even cleaner over the coming year because the natural cleaning effect of a Bio Cleanze treatment continues to deep clean over time. And it adds residual protection against re-colonisation.

Click the link on this page to watch the video ...

View full article →

Why do surfaces turn temporarily orange after soft washing?
Why can surfaces turn temporarily orange after soft washing?

June 04, 2020

In this video Ben demonstrates the temporary effect of soft washing with Benz Bio Cleanze that can occur on some surfaces – especially concrete and wall render – when applied in hot weather.

Click the link on this page to watch this short "how-to" soft washing video ...

View full article →

Benz softwash biocide cleaning products
Can surfactants be safely added to Benz biocides?

April 21, 2020

A number of customers have asked about adding surfactants to our softwash biocides. So we thought to share the info with everyone.

Click the link on this page to find out what we told them ...

View full article →