October 22, 2019
A common question contractors are asked when tendering for a contract is, "How long will my property stay clean after being softwashed?"
By applying the principles of Benz “Clean and Maintain” softwash systems softwash contractors can confidently tell their customers to expect two to three years, on average, before visible re-colonisation appears. Sometimes much longer.
“Capillary action is the ability of a liquid to flow in narrow spaces without the assistance of, or even in opposition to, external forces like gravity” (Wikipedia.org)
The density of a softwash chemical is directly related to its capillary action. The less dense the chemical, the greater will be the capillary action. This is also known as the "wetting" ability of a sofwash product.
It is the power behind the residual protective effect of Benz Bio Cleanze – which hypo cannot offer.
The chemical make up of Benz Lightning Cleanze makes it denser than water (25% greater, as is the case with all sodium hypochlorite based softwash products). So it tends to work more on the surface. In this context it is highly effective in killing, through the process of oxidation, the surface colonisation or “biofilm”.
Benz Bio Cleanze however, is less dense than water (11% less) and so is able to penetrate more deeply into the surface of the render – even more deeply than water itself can – thus killing any remaining spores that were still alive deep in the substrate of the render.
When applied to a pre-cleaned porous surface (using Lightning Cleanze, Tornado Cleanze, or a jet washer) a substantial amount of the active ingredient – DDAC – will remain in the render. This residue will slowly biodegrade over time with the onset of damp conditions but only when it comes into contact with living spores and other organic material.
Quick tip: Even when Bio Cleanze has biodegraded to 95% of its original strength, there will still be sufficient DDAC remaining for it to continue to have residual biocidal properties that help prevent re-colonisation.
It's important to re-treat surfaces with Bio Cleanze when the first signs of re-colonisation appear, or even before.
Frequent re-treatment means that less active ingredient will be broken down by organic material. Therefore a higher strength of the DDAC biocide will remain in a porous surface to give strong residual protection against re-colonisation.
Trees, shrubs and hedges near a property always encourage re-colonisation, as do plant pots on footpaths and patios.
A rendered wall that has had plant pots placed close to it may become re-colonised, especially if the plants are allowed to grow large and even climb up the wall.
When a contractor returns to a property it will usually be obvious where some of the re-colonisation is coming from.
Prevention measures – including educating customers about the importance of, for example, keeping paths and patios free from organic matter, such as grass cuttings and fallen leaves – can then be put in place, ensuring further treatments will be even more effective.
Information about re-colonisation should be passed on to customers, so they can carry out the cutting back of trees, hedges, shrubs and so on.
Sometimes re-colonisation can come from the build up of growths on a roof or parapet capping, which may find its way down a render because of poor lead flashing or guttering work.
Growths may fall to the ground and then re-colonise the render from the ground up, starting with the path or patio they fall on.
The same is true for gaps between the capping stones of walls, which spores like to grow in.
Quick tip: Few members of the general public realise the importance of keeping their property free from organic growth build up, so educating them is a service in it's own right.
Contractors who take a little time to help their customers in this way generate goodwill, show themselves as being knowledgeable professionals, and increase the likelihood of their customers wanting them to return, generating repeat business.
Surfaces will remain cleaner, for longer, following a treatment with Bio Cleanze. This is due to the combination of pre-cleaning – with Lightning Cleanze or Tornado Cleanze, and/or jet washer (but do not jet wash render or soft stone ) – and subsequent regular maintenance treatments.
Adopting our "Clean and Maintain" softwash systems means the financial costs to the customer can be far less than the alternatives, e.g. painting. And of course, their property will be kept permanently clean and returned to a low maintenance finish as originally designed.
The contractor also benefits by building up a long-term repeat business serving delighted customers. A win-win situation for both customer and contractor.
We hope this information is helpful.
Ben, Leo & Fiona
Comments will be approved before showing up.
September 15, 2021
Many soft wash contractors can be unsure of the safest way to soft wash asbestos roofs. So in this post we lay out the best practices we've learned from running a soft washing business since 2013.
Click the link on this page to learn how to treat asbestos ...
September 08, 2021
Ben demonstrates how to scrape moss and lichen from natural slate roof tiles and treat the biofilm to kill all the growths on this natural slate roof.
Click the link on this page to watch the how-to video ...
September 02, 2021 2 Comments
When soft washing it's vitally important to protect surrounding building materials. e.g. lead flashing. And not to create "clean streaks" – from overspray and run-off – on surfaces that are not part of your contract.
Click the link on this page to watch how we achieve this when soft washing a chimney ...
It's a free resource for people wanting to learn about the soft washing industry, to expand an existing business, or build a new business.
Soft washing reduces, or even eliminates, the need to use high-pressure washing.
Instead, once the build up of algae, lichen, fungus, moss and mould – the root causes of properties looking "dirty" – has been treated, the natural "self-cleansing" of sun, rain and wind removes the surface residue through time.
By educating the cleaning trade and public about soft washing we are helping develop an industry that offers sustainable treatments to clean and maintain exterior hard surfaces.
Subscribe to our free trade tips blog to download your "Professional Soft Wash Contractors Pricing Guide".
The free guide shows you – step by step – how to easily, quickly, and accurately create softwash business quotes.
This saves you time, is a highly professional approach, and increases your chances of winning new contracts.