How to make $230 an hour removing moss.

Have you ever taken a look at your customer’s home and seen moss on their siding or on their deck? Did you ever stop to talk to the customer and ask them if they would like it removed? There is money to be made in offering such services. A member of the Gopher Lawn Care Business Forum shared with us how he made $465 in 2 hours of pressure washing work.

Pressure washing

Pressure washing

He wrote “do you guys offer pressure washing? There are many homes in my area with vinyl siding that I have seen could use a cleaning. When it comes to purchasing new equipment, I have this rule of thumb whereby if I have 3 clients in a three week period ask for a service I do not currently offer, I buy the equipment.

We have a lot of soft and hardwoods here in my area and as such, vinyl siding and decks are prone to moss & mold.

Over the past few weeks I have been spraying an organic moss killer which works perfect however some customers wanted us to come back when the moss was dead (48 hours +/-) and pressure wash also. So I bought a commercial 4,000 psi, 8 hp engine unit. This thing is amazing. It came with a 50 and 100 foot hose and has 6 attachments for the head.

The moss killer I have been using works excellent however it’s expensive. This pressure washer however is a much faster way of doing it and a fraction of the cost yet I am charging the same. I have 6 more jobs to do next week, I wanted to do it myself today to find out what it was like, did I price it right, what to do and what not to do. I will tell the staff Monday when we have our staff meeting and explain the process and to inform current clients should they see a need while at their home.

Although the pressure washer was a bit on the expensive side at $1,290.00, I did enough homes this afternoon and evening to pay for it and have a few jobs yet to do, the thing must run on fumes as I ran it for 8 hours and it’s still half full.

One client gave me $100.00 to strip the paint of their deck floor so he could paint. There is one tip that is pretty extreme and it peeled the paint off in minutes. I think it took me 40 min to do a 16 X 24 deck.

This unit is on a very nice cart with wheels, it’s heavy at 225 pounds. I am going to add a second washer tomorrow. I did 7 jobs yesterday afternoon and evening. The first one was big $$$, the house is in the upper middle class, it was a 40 X 30 house two stories, took me almost two hours, I charged $465.00. Then the customer came out and asked me to do the decks, they were 12 X 16 each and I charged $125.00 each. One was a ground deck the second was on the 2nd floor. Then he wanted the driveway done, god I thought I would never get out of there. The driveway was a double, about 30 feet long, and I charged $100.00. Afterwards his neighbor came over and wanted his deck done 14 x 20 so I charged $175.00.

When I was finally done I left to do a deck covered in moss not far away and basically spent the rest of the day doing decks and siding on that street. It was a beautiful day, about 85 degrees so there were a lot of people out doing yard work, even I was impressed with the results. You would want a fairly nice day temp wise as you do get a bit wet, sure felt good though as it was hot for our area.

Anyhow, I am going to start advertising this service, you may want to consider it too.”

Another business owner asked “how do the shingles hold up to the pressure washing? On an older roof, could I end up with a repair bill?”

He responded “the unit I has has adjustable pressure and several nozzles, I would use a 25 degree nozzle at 2,000 p.s.i. So far there has been no damage. It’s amazing how it makes it look new again. Personally I would stay clear of the big box store units and yes I do have one, it’s good enough to clean the mowers, mower decks, ATV, cars etc however for the commercial side, but for these kind of jobs I would suggest you buy a commercial unit.”

A third lawn care business owner shared his insights and said “I have been doing pressure cleaning for years and it is a great money maker and easy to do. I have steady clientele who what me to pressure wash just about everything to do with their house and property. My prices vary depending on the job but mainly I do whole houses. For a house from 1k - 2k sq. ft. I charge $150 -200, 2k-3k $200-300. I also at times get requests while I’m there to do driveways and sidewalks. I charge $150-$250 due to the fact that it takes more time, believe it of not.
I buy pool chlorine in 2.5 gal. containers and dilute it with water to do pool enclosure that are white and I charge $100-200 per time. Once I give the enclosure a detailed cleaning I offer a quarterly service $75 - $125 to come back and maintained it so it stays looking good.

I get a lot of algae and mold on house and it comes off real easy. Sometimes a little elbow grease is needed.”

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