White vinyl fences are pretty when first installed, but it doesn't take long for them to get dirty and stained. Some stains you're likely to encounter are scuff marks from your mower, grass stains from mowing the yard, and rust stains from your lawn sprinkler. If you have a lot of fencing that's covered in stains, you may want to hire a contractor to clean your fence to save you some elbow grease. However, if you want to clean your fence yourself, here are some things to try.
Start by hosing off the fence with a garden hose or pressure washer. Then add dish soap and water to a bucket to make a soap solution. Use it to scrub dirt and light stains from the vinyl. Be sure to use a brush with soft bristles so you don't leave scuffs and scratches. Scratches will collect dirt and stains easily and cause your fence to get dirty quicker. One thing to remember is to rinse your fence thoroughly after scrubbing it with soap. If you don't, you'll leave behind a dull film that will affect the appearance of your fence. Also, you'll want to apply soap to a small section of fencing and rinse it off before moving to a new section or the soap may dry and stick to the fence before you get back to rinse it away.
You can buy cleaning products designed for vinyl fences at a home improvement store. The advantage to buying one of these cleaners is that you can feel confident it won't damage your fence as long as you follow the directions. You can also shop for cleaners for specific types of stains. For example, you can buy a mildew remover or a rust remover. When you're shopping for a cleaning product, be sure it says on the label it is safe for vinyl or it may damage your fence.
Before using a chemical cleaner on your fence, you may want to water your landscaping first. Then when you're finished cleaning the fence, hose down your plants and lawn again. This will help protect your landscaping from chemical damage. Work on a small section of fencing at a time so you can rinse off your fence before it is in contact with the chemicals for too long. You may need to do a lot of scrubbing to get rid of difficult stains such as rust. Just be sure you use a soft cloth, brush with soft bristles, or a soft scrubbing pad so you don't damage your fence in the process.
Cleaning a vinyl fence takes a lot of work, but the end result is worth it. Vinyl fencing is so durable, as long as you keep it clean, it will look new for years. How often you need to clean your fence depends on a lot of variables such as if you mow your lawn nearby, the mineral composition of your water, and your climate.