SOS! Why is My Paver Patio Turning Green? (Algae & Mold Removal)

April 30, 2022

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Are you a homeowner asking, why is my patio turning green? If so, you’re not alone! Algae, mold, and everyday dirt and grime can leave behind a greenish tinge. Additionally, grass clippings can stain various pavers, as can chemicals and other debris.

While various buildup creates an unsightly look along with patio pavers, this staining isn’t necessarily permanent. Knowing the cause of those stains and how to prevent them can help ensure a stunning patio. Above all, the right cleaning methods can make your patio look new. Keep reading to find out how to maintain your patio’s appearance and lose those unsightly green stains with exterior cleaning services.

Why Is My Patio Turning Green?

Algae and mold are the primary culprits when it comes to a green patio. However, grass clippings and even lawn care chemicals can stain pavers, as said. Additionally, just knowing that mold and algae stain pavers doesn’t help stop this from happening!

In turn, it’s vital that you consider why algae, mold, moss, mildew, and other growth affect your home’s patio. Also, you might consider how to clean that debris properly once your patio begins to discolor. The wrong pressure washing techniques, cleaners, and other details can mean damaging that patio, not cleaning it!

Results of paver cleaning and sealing in Tampa Bay.

What causes green algae on concrete and pavers?

First note what causes green algae, mold, and other growth on pavers. These contaminants thrive in damp conditions. Concrete, pavers, and other outdoor materials are typically very porous. In turn, they absorb moisture that allows mold and algae to flourish.

Additionally, algae and mold grow faster in dark areas without direct light. Therefore, you might notice mold growing behind walls of your home or in bathtubs not exposed to light. In the same way, the darker your property, the more likely you’ll see mold and algae growth!

What also stains a patio or other outdoor surfaces?

Grass clippings might also stain patio pavers over time. Think of how often you see grass stains on children’s clothes after they play outside. In the same way, the chemicals in grass can discolor pavers, concrete, and other surfaces.

Also, oily residues such as from automotive fluids might leave behind stains. Some lawn care chemicals might also stain or otherwise damage brick, pavers, and similar materials.

How Do I Get Rid of Green Mold On My Patio?

Sunlight, heat, and air circulation hinder mold, moss, mildew, and algae. In turn, you might not notice this same discoloration on patios or walkways exposed to lots of direct sunlight. Removing obstructions such as tree branches over your patio can then help keep moss and other debris away.

However, sun exposure isn’t always the right choice for keeping a patio mold-free. After all, you might appreciate that shade when it’s time to enjoy your outdoor space! Also, homeowners can’t always control sunlight exposure around their property. Cutting back tree branches and other such steps won’t help in areas with heavy cloud cover and rain.

Rather than relying on sunlight and dry weather to keep patio pavers clean, you might consider a few cleaning tips. First, mix a 50:50 white vinegar and water solution and spray this on the pavers. Second, let the solution sit for about 20 minutes. Next, use an outdoor scrub brush and scrub your patio pavers or other surfaces.

Lastly, use a garden hose with a pressure nozzle and wash away all that debris. Repeat this process as needed, until you’ve removed as much green as possible. You can also increase the vinegar part of the solution. Also, wait until the pavers are dry before putting furniture and other items back on the patio.

How Do I Keep My Patio From Turning Green?

Copper is an excellent choice for stopping mold, algae, and other growth along a patio. While you can’t just put down a copper layer, you can use copper-based sprays on these areas. Check your local home improvement store for these sprays and use as directed.

If you cannot find these sprays, check for copper sulfate crystals. Stores often sell these in the gardening or even pool and aquarium care sections! Dissolve these in water as directed on the package and apply to when the pavers are bone dry. Let the solution soak into your pavers as a protective layer against mold and other growth.

A contractor patio power washing.

Professional power washing and paver sealing also helps keep mold and algae growth to a minimum. Washing away mold and algae spores and roots keeps them from growing. Additionally, sealing helps repel moisture. A power washing contractor can note how often your property needs this service!

Also, consider a bagged mower rather than letting grass clippings spray over a patio and other surfaces. You might also rinse off those surfaces after grass cutting. This reduces the risk of residual stains and discoloration.

What Kills Mold Better, Bleach or Vinegar?

Vinegar kills mold better than bleach! Bleach kills only surface mold and some spores, while vinegar kills the mold membrane underneath. Also, vinegar is also safer for outdoor lawns and landscaping features.

If a vinegar solution doesn’t kill mold, algae, moss, and other growth on a patio, call in the professionals. Pressure washing contractors often use commercial-grade cleaners meant for pavers and concrete. Additionally, they might also use scrub brushes that help dislodge and clean mold and other debris. In the end, your outdoor space will look like new when you rely on the pros!

Should I Pressure Wash My Patio?

Some people might caution homeowners against pressure washing a patio and other outdoor surface. However, when done correctly this service is an excellent investment for any property! Check out some reasons to consider regular power washing around your outdoor space:

  • Pressure washing helps kill and remove damaging mold, algae, grass clippings, lawn care chemicals, and snow salt. In turn, your pavers and other materials might last longer without chipping and other damage.
  • Power washing helps dissolve oily materials including automotive fluids. Consequently, your driveway, garage floor, and walkways avoid staining and other damage.
  • Improve outdoor air quality with regular, professional washing! A pressure washing contractor can clean away dust, pollen, and other bothersome irritants. As a result, you’ll breathe easier and notice fewer bothersome odors when relaxing outdoors.
  • Oily residues, mold, moss, and other debris often create slick, unsafe surfaces under foot. Therefore, consider regular power washing for your own safety!
  • Full-scale pressure washing is an excellent choice for improving curb appeal. Professional scrubbing removes dirt, mud, and other unsightly debris so that your property looks like new.
  • Always schedule power washing before painting, staining, sealing, and other such work. Washing removes dust and debris that would otherwise interfere with even coating and a quality finish.

How Often Should I Pressure Wash My Patio?

Most contractors suggest pressure washing a patio once a year. An annual wash is often enough to remove dirt, grime, dust, mold, and other debris. However, this annual schedule is not a “hard and fast rule.” Consider when you might adjust your schedule for patio and other outdoor power washing.

  • Thick layers of dust often settle onto properties found close to busy highways, airports, and marinas. In turn, it’s vital to wash outdoor spaces as often as needed to keep pavers and other surfaces clean.
  • You might also notice smoke stains, ash, and other residues on the patio if you cook outdoors often. If so, choose more frequent cleaning for those patio surfaces.
  • Families with children and pets, or who entertain regularly, might find outdoor spaces getting dirty often throughout the year. As a result, your property might need power washing more often than annually!
  • Ensure your property looks its best before putting it on the real estate market. A thorough power washing convinces prospective buyers that you maintain your property inside and out! Also, pressure washing brings out the color of brick, stone, pavers, and other materials.
  • If someone in your family suffers with allergies or similar health concerns, consider frequent power washing. This service removes dust, pollen, mold, and other bothersome irritants.
  • Heavy rain and other inclement weather can leave behind thick layers of dirt, dust, and bothersome debris. In turn, schedule power washing when needed to remove all that rubbish from your property.

Is It Okay to Power Wash My Patio Myself?

Property owners should avoid DIY power washing, even if you can rent pressure washing equipment. There are many reasons to leave this work to the professionals! Before you try to tackle patio and other needed washing, consider some reasons to call a contractor instead:

  • Pressure washing equipment is heavy and cumbersome, usually more so than property owners realize! Just hauling it away from a home improvement store and out of your car can risk straining and injury.
  • Additionally, it’s easy to damage property and cause injury while trying to use pressure washing equipment. High pressure wands can tear through screens, landscaping features, and other details when used incorrectly. Above all, using this equipment improperly can mean serious injury! Avoid these risks by calling a pressure washing contractor.
  • Not all cleansers work for every exterior surface! In turn, you can damage wood, brick, and other such materials by using the wrong cleanser. On the other hand, the right cleanser makes quick work of dissolving thick dirt and grime.
  • In the same way, different nozzles offer various cleaning advantages. Wider nozzles clean larger surfaces quickly. However, narrow nozzles offer higher pressure. A power washing contractor knows those differences and is sure to use the right nozzle for needed cleaning.

Above all, remember that power washing companies carry insurance against damages. In the rare event of property damage, you can make a claim on their policy. However, should you damage property yourself, repair costs come out of your pocket!

Equipment used for power washing in Tampa Bay.

Should I Restore My Pavers or Replace Them?

Restoring pavers is typically far cheaper than replacing them. In turn, you might ensure you’ve exhausted every restoration possibility before deciding on new paver installation!

Thorough pressure washing often returns pavers to their original luster. Additionally, wet-look sealants keep that color true for months if not years. Also, remember that you might replace a few broken pavers rather than installing an entirely new patio or walkway.

On the other hand, pavers with a poor base might continue to shift and then crack over time. For this reason, replacing them along with a new base installation might be the better choice. Investing in new pavers also allows you to update their overall appearance! Classic stone, stamped concrete, or bold brick can mean a stunning new look for your property.

How Long Should Patio Pavers Last?

Depending on the manufacturing quality, patio pavers should last some 50 to 100 years! However, everyday wear and tear and how you support those materials affect their lifespan. Check out some reasons why your property’s pavers might break down sooner than they should:

  • Shifting soil conditions or sandy soil don’t offer enough support for pavers. In turn, stone and brick might crack or sink more readily, risking damage.
  • Weeds growing up between pavers put pressure on them, also risking cracks and other damage.
  • Insects might burrow into pavers or the areas between them, creating breakage.
  • Heavy traffic risks cracking brittle pavers. Remember that not all outdoor materials can withstand the weight of vehicles, trailers, and the like!
  • Harsh chemicals and power washing techniques can damage stone, brick, and even concrete. To avoid this risk, leave patio cleaning to the pros.
  • Sharp objects such as snow shovels and garden tools might crack or otherwise damage brittle brick and stone.
  • It’s vital that patio pavers stay in place, as their base helps dispel weight. In turn, ensure children, pets, or everyday foot traffic don’t dislodge those pavers and bricks.

Your power washing contractor can also offer advice on how to ensure patio pavers stay in good condition over the years. He or she might also note if it’s time for sealing and other preventative maintenance. In the end, those pavers will stay in good condition for as long as possible!

Tampa Bay Roof Cleaning is happy to help answer the question, why is my patio turning green? Hopefully you found this information useful! If you need expert property cleaning, turn out our Tampa Bay power washing contractors. We offer FREE quotes and guaranteed satisfaction. To find out more, call us today.


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