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Softwashing vs Other Cleaning Methods? - What is Best?

Soft washing is based on the principle of a low-pressure cleaning technique to effectively treat the organic and non-organic stains that can appear on a building’s exterior. The low-pressure treatment is designed to protect the substrate, ensuring the integrity of the building remains, and no further damage is caused during the cleaning process.


Furthermore, soft washing gets right to the heart of the problem, removing the roots at the source, ensuring that the stains won’t reappear a month or two later. In fact, soft washing is more of a treatment than a clean!

In this blog, the experts at Spectrum have compared the soft washing cleaning treatment to other cleaning methods available for property managers and building owners to consider. As always, if in doubt, please consult a professional cleaning contractor. 

Soft wash vs pressure wash

Pressure washing is a powerful cleaning technique used to strip away dirt and contamination without using chemicals.

Render, roofs, and cladding require a more sensitive cleaning treatment that protects the substrate. Pressure washing can lead to cracks in the substrate, which can only lead to further problems.

As pressure washing only strips away the dirt and organic growth, it doesn’t get to the root of the problem. While the substrate will look clean immediately after the treatment, the growth will immediately return as it hasn’t been completely removed. 

Soft washing runs water through a pump with little pressure, applying a chemical solution to loosen the growth before water is sprayed to remove it. 

The low pressure ensures the substrate is protected throughout the cleaning treatment too. 

Soft wash vs steam wash

As the name implies, a steam wash cleaning technique uses water that has been heated into steam to gently treat a building’s substrate. The technique uses less water than soft washing, meaning the area can dry in a quicker time.

The team at Spectrum use two main types of steam wash: the Doff cleaning technique and the TORC cleaning technique. Let’s explain the difference between the two.

Soft wash vs Doff

The Doff cleaning technique heats water up to 150 degrees which can kill most organic growth at its roots, without the need for a chemical treatment, as well as tackling paint and graffiti.   

Soft washing uses a chemical treatment to loosen the growth that has appeared on the substrate before a gentle wash fully removes the stains. The Doff technique relies on the heated water applied at low pressure to clean the substrate. The combination of heat at minimal pressure reduces any risk of causing damage to the substrate. 

The Doff cleaning treatment is best used on stone, ceramic tiles, and concrete substrates. However, Doff cannot be used on all render substrates, so it pays to listen to the expertise of a specialist cleaning contractor like Spectrum to use the most appropriate treatment for your building. 

Soft wash vs TORC

The TORC cleaning technique uses a low-pressure gentle swirling vortex of compressed air, fine abrasion, and water to provide an accurate stonework cleaning treatment. 

TORC is best used on stonework, gently removing paint, algae, moss, lichen, carbon stains, limescale, paint and graffiti, without damaging the substrate itself. 

While the DOFF machine is our preferred method for cleaning most stains and organic matter from stone buildings, the team at Spectrum will use the TORC machine when stains are deeply ingrained into the pores of the stones. 

Spectrum’s Soft Wash and Steam Wash Treatments

Spectrum have developed a patented P.A.S.T treatment system to effectively clean a building’s exterior. Specialist treatments and equipment are used by the team to deep clean render, roofs, cladding and stonework while protecting the substrate at the same time. 

The team at Spectrum will first undertake an assessment of your building to determine the correct equipment and processes to use. Using inappropriate cleaning chemicals or the wrong soft washing equipment can result in poor aesthetic results and even cause damage to the façade of the property.

To deliver the best results from our work, we design and 3D print our own equipment. This unique specialist knowledge, built upon the extensive experience we have of cleaning render, brick, and roofing surfaces across the UK, ensures we deliver the highest standards.

If a cleaning solution is required, our highly trained team will know which biocide to use and in what manner to permanently remove the stains from your building. We can use our 3D printed equipment on all areas of a building without the need for a scaffold, saving time and money. 

If you are interested in our soft washing service, contact us to speak to a member of our team. 

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11th August 2021

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14th July 2020

What to Look For When Sourcing a Softwash Contractor

19th August 2021

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14th October 2020

What are the Types of Soft washing Solution? 

21st September 2021

The Ultimate Guide to Softwashing

26th August 2021

Softwashing vs Other Cleaning Methods?

17th August 2021

What Can You Softwash?

11th August 2021

Can We Help With Your Specialist Cleaning Needs?

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