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  1. #1
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    Default Cleaning Vinyl Railing

    I've got white vinyl railing on my deck at home. It's developing some green moss/algae/fungus/whatever in some of the nooks and crannies. I tried spraying it off with the hose last night, with minimal success. It takes a bit of scrubbing with a rag/water to remove. Does anyone have any tricks for removing this stuff? How about any ideas on how to prevent it (I thought about washing the affected areas with ammonia or bleach maybe...)?
    --------------------------------
    shawn

  2. #2
    Super Member Dargo's Avatar
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    Default Re: Cleaning Vinyl Railing

    I have several hundred feet of said vinyl railing around a large porch and fought the same thing for a while. I called the manufacturer of the product and asked them about a bleach spray. They told me to never do that because the bleach could begin breaking down the vinyl and could make it chalkey like on the surface. They advised me to pressure wash it and then mix up a spray bottle of the anti-algae stuff for swimming pools and spray the railing. They said that the anti-algae stuff for pools is obviously easy on vinyl, lasts a while, and is non-toxic to any humans or pets. So far it's worked well for me. I have a few hundred feet of 7' tall vinyl privacy fence I need to do the north side of as well now.
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  3. #3
    Super Star Member EddieWalker's Avatar
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    Default Re: Cleaning Vinyl Railing

    Dargo,

    I have some three rail vinyl fence also and thought bleech is what your supposed to use to clean it. But I'm not sure where I heard that, so I'll have to look into that to be sure.

    Swimming pools use a product called Shock to clean up the alge when it gets real bad and the chlorine breaks down. Shock is a higher concetrate of bleach than what you use for laundry. Same exact chemical makup.

    If Shock is used in pools, than wouldn't a weaker solution be ok on vinyl fences? Something like laundry bleach?

    I was just about to bleach my fence here pretty soon, but I need to get a vine off of it first, so this is good timeing if your right about the bleach.

    Thanks,
    Eddie

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Cleaning Vinyl Railing

    How about using TSP on it and a power washer? The power washer alone should remove it. I use that on my deck which is forever turning green in the shade. The TSP should really help to remove it or soften it up.
    Cub Cadet 7275, FEL, RFD2584 mower, Box Blade, Scaper Blade, York Rake, Snowblower, Rototiller, Stump grinder, Wood Chipper and a Post Hole Digger.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Cleaning Vinyl Railing

    I suspect the pool product referred to is the algaecide product used in pools. This is not the same as shock nor is it a chlorine product.
    BX2230 w/ FEL to care for 21 acres of woods, hills, pasture and swamp, 800' driveway

  6. #6
    Super Star Member EddieWalker's Avatar
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    Default Re: Cleaning Vinyl Railing

    midlf,

    Sorry, I wasn't clear. I was trying to point out that if Shock was used in pools, which is about ten times stronger than household bleach, and it doesn't harm swimming pools, those with liners and pvc plumbing. Then I made the leap of faith that if it's ok there, then the much, much weaker solution used for laundry should be fine for vinyl fence.

    Eddie

  7. #7
    Super Member Dargo's Avatar
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    Default Re: Cleaning Vinyl Railing

    Eddie, I don't really know. I am just going by what the people who manufactured the vinyl railing told me. Maybe it is to do with the bleach drying on the vinyl and then the vinyl being exposed to direct sunlight makes it chalkey. I've seen chalkey looking stuff before and the white trails from run off. I don't want that. And midlf is right, the stuff they told me to mix in a spray bottle with water is the algaecide stuff.

    Since I took their advice and did not use any bleach solution, I cannot tell you if it does indeed harm the vinyl railing. The shock used in my pool is mixed in with about 30,000 gallons of water and the ppm is actually quite low when compared with I'd assume would be mixed up in a spray bottle for cleaning. Otherwise, you could just dip some water out of the pool and spray it on the rails. I doubt that would work, but there again, I have not tried that either.
    1982 18" Murray push mower (B&S industrial 8 hp engine!) custom deck, new blade - became unbalanced when one side old blade broke off!
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  8. #8
    Super Star Member EddieWalker's Avatar
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    Default Re: Cleaning Vinyl Railing

    Quote Originally Posted by Dargo
    The shock used in my pool is mixed in with about 30,000 gallons of water and the ppm is actually quite low when compared with I'd assume would be mixed up in a spray bottle for cleaning.

    I didn't think about that.

    Eddie

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Cleaning Vinyl Railing

    I found that Jomax (found at Lowes and walmart) does an excellent job of cleaning vinyl of dirt, mold, mildew and many other things.. You mix about 3/4 water, 1/4 bleach, and a little jomax.. Spray it on.. let it stand.. then hose it off..

    I would think that it would work on vinyl fence as good as it did on my siding..

    good luck

    Brian

  10. #10
    Platinum Member dieselsmoke1's Avatar
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    Default Re: Cleaning Vinyl Railing

    There's lots of products for vinyl siding, my favorite is Amour All brand. I would guess they would work for vinyl fences as well.
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