May 27, 2015 2 Comments
Tennis courts abound in most towns and cities and are a profitable market for professional soft washing contractors.
A tarmac tennis court needs regular maintenance to keep it both looking good and safe to play on. Biological growths such as algae and moss can make the playing surface dangerously slippery. And it’s simply not much fun playing on a dirty court that's been colonised by various forms of biological growths.
There are different types of tennis court surface. Use only low pressure washing when cleaning painted or tarmac tennis courts as using strong pressure can leave streaks. Benz Bio Cleanze is the product of choice for soft washing all non-grass tennis courts.
Algae often appear after a prolonged wet spell but the whole court may not need to be treated. You'll likely find the borders and shady areas require more frequent treatment than the rest of the court.
The most effective approach is to first remove the worst of the biological growths. Heavy moss can be manually scraped, or removed with a rotary sweeper such as a Westerman (fitted with a polypropylene brush because the stainless steel brushes can cause striping).
Then blow away the now loose moss with a leaf blower before lightly pressure washing. Complete with a treatment of Bio Cleanze using professional soft washing equipment, or if that's not available a watering can with a fine rose can do a reasonable job.
Quick tip: If the worst of the moss is not first mechanically removed, the optimum dilution rate of Bio Cleanze on a first clean may need to be 20-30:1; while for maintenance cleans 40-50:1 is usually sufficient. The actual dilution rate will vary according to the degree of colonisation and the local environment.
Thick and heavy moss growth will need plenty of mix to ensure it gets fully soaked. Applying twice on a first clean, to ensure saturation, is often a good idea.
On a standard tennis court, using appropriate professional equipment even a very heavy build up of moss can be mechanically removed, blown and treated with Bio Cleanze in a day.
Important: If children are to use the court keep the dilution rate to 50:1.
If the customer wants the court to look immaculate very quickly – perhaps because of an approaching tournament – treating with Benz Lightning Cleanze at 5-10:1 is an option, together with light power/pressure washing.
Colour change: Bear in mind that Lightning Cleanze can lighten the colour of tarmac, so treat a test patch first and get your customer's agreement that it is acceptable before treating the entire court.
If Lightning Cleanze is applied at 5:1 the lightening effect may be considerable, so consulting with your customer to ensure they are happy to go ahead is essential.
Some customers prefer the lighter grey colour of the tarmac. Some do not. And many do not mind either way. It's simply a matter of personal preference.
Quick tip: Allow an extra day if treating with Lightning Cleanze because rinsing and clean up can be time consuming. Only use Lightning Cleanze if the customer demands extremely fast results. Bio Cleanze is our preference whenever possible.
The easiest way to cure the moss problem is to treat the tennis court with Bio Cleanze at 20-30:1, making sure you thoroughly saturate the moss and entire surface. Treat parts of the tennis court not presently showing signs of moss growth, because spores hide in cracks and crevices.
Important: If children and animals will use the court, treat at only 50:1 and ensure it is completely dry before allowing them access.
Let the moss weather away through the action of sun, wind and rain for 6 months. Then return to treat the tennis court again to kill any remaining spores.
Thereafter, regular "Clean & Maintain" softwash treatments will keep the moss under control.
1) To get more rapid results you could return to the site after a month and lightly jet wash, using low pressure, with a flat surface cleaner. This will remove the dead moss but will add to labour costs.
1) You could hire a driveway cleaning machine to pre-clean the surface. A sufficiently heavy carpet of moss is usually required to justify the cost of using such a machine but it may be worth trying if your customer is willing to pay. Use it before the giving the first soft wash treatment to give your customer an instant result before commencing the treatment process.
Acrylic painted tennis courts are best treated differently to tarmac tennis courts.
We suggest first treating the entire surface with Bio Cleanze at 50:1, which will kill the biofilm. Leave the court for a minimum of one week following treatment to let the biofilm start to break down through natural weathering of sun, rain and wind.
Then give a treatment of Lightning Cleanze (often at only 10:1 dilution), followed by a light pressure wash to rinse and remove any surface debris. This will leave the court clean and your customer – and of course the players – very happy.
Quick tip: You'll find this to be a far easier, and uses a smaller quantity of softwash chemical, than if you had not pre-treated with Bio Cleanze.
You could use Lightning Cleanze as the first treatment if time is particularly critical. But this will mean using more Lightning Cleanze at 5:1 dilution.
Whichever method you use, remember to keep the tennis court permanently clean all year with your ongoing "Clean & Maintain" programme.
We hope this information is helpful and sincerely wish you great success in your soft washing business,
Ben, Leo, Fiona, Stevie & Anthony
How to find answers to most soft washing questions: Simply enter a relevant "keyword" or short phrase – e.g. keyword for the above link = "how-to" – into our in-site Search Engine (magnifying glass icon on the main menu).
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Phone: 0800 70 74 222
Ireland and other countries
Phone: 00353 214 622 978
Lines open Monday - Friday, 9am – 5pm
Please note: The above numbers are for orders only (click here for tech support)
PS: Click here to set up your "Clean & Maintain" programme. After completing an initial soft wash treatment, put your customer on a "Clean & Maintain" ongoing maintenance programme. Your customers will enjoy a permanently clean property and you will enjoy a steady stream of repeat business.
This is clearly a win-win arrangement for you and your customers.
February 17, 2022
Looking for some advice on how to price the sofwashing of an asphalt tennis court that is heavily covered with moss. I normally charge £2.50sqm for driveways.
Client would like the court ready in 10 days time.
Appreciate your help on this.
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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 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.
February 17, 2022
Hi Frank, Our basic fee would be in the region of €1000. Allow another €500- €650 if treating with Lightning Cleanze, so total fee would be about €1650.
Some contractors will charge much more and some considerably less. Find the price point you feel comfortable with and your market finds acceptable (the differing prosperity of geographical areas – London/Cornwall for example – can mean a price differential of as much as 100%)