In the lazy, hazy days of a Montreal summer, driving down any suburban street on or around the island is a visual treat. Manicured lawns, freshly planted flowers, and scores of newly-paved driveways create a sense of joyous zen that accompanies the splendor of the summer season. That is, unless, a dirty, dull, or rusted aluminum fence juts out of the landscape like a painful eyesore. If your fence is guilty of ruining summer’s scenic beauty for sojourning motorists, or is actually bothering your own appreciation of your outdoor aesthetic, it’s time to learn how to clean an aluminum fence. Obviously, cleaning your aluminum fence to reach a desired aesthetic is dependent on factors such as exposure to the elements and the type of cleanser used. A simple and easy five-step process will definitely get your fence looking brand new, but if your aluminum meshing is beyond salvaging, it may be time to replace it. If that’s the case, Mondi Aluminum will be happy to help you find fencing that meets both your individual aesthetic and budget!

Why Aluminum?

Deciding on the fencing for your home can be as time-consuming and difficult as choosing things like paint colors, cabinets, and light fixtures. Aside from the price, visual aesthetics, durability, and practicality are prime considerations. For example, wood can look attractive and be sturdy depending on the grain, but over time and exposure to the elements, it will rot and need either sectional repair or replacement altogether. Aluminum is a popular choice for residential fencing because it is lustrous, durable, sturdy, and requires very little maintenance. Even so, exposure to the elements can damage even the most well-made aluminum fences. This is especially true in cities like Montreal, which sees sweltering heat and intense storms in the summer, extremely frigid cold and copious amounts of snow in the winter, and everything in between in the spring and fall. The damage to a Montrealer’s aluminum fence is seasonal, with dirt stains, lawn chemical treatments, grass trimmings, sun exposure in the summer, and water, ice, and possible warping damage in the winter (as snow and ice accumulate). Age can also factor into the look of your aluminum fence, as multiple years of exposure to the elements can lead to color fading, overgrowth, permanent dust or dirt stains, and rust or corrosion. To avoid these problems and keep your aluminum fence both looking great and as durable as the day you bought it, every homeowner should learn how to clean an aluminum fence, and do so periodically during the year.

How to Clean an Aluminum Fence: The Steps

  How To Clean Aluminum Fence Professionally Cleaning an aluminum fence isn’t an overly intricate process, however, following these steps in the proper order will maximize the results. Before the actual cleaning takes place, it would be a good idea to trim any foliage that has grown around or through the fencing. This will not only create a uniform aesthetic but allow you to get at spots on your fence that may be obscured. It may also be a good time to inspect your fence for any damage incurred during a summer or winter storm, from seasonal tools like lawnmowers or snowblowers, or from animals like groundhogs or raccoons. You should also check for rust or corrosion, especially around joints, screws, or bolts, as well as any chips in the paint. It (hopefully) goes without saying that all this should be done in months when the weather isn’t too extreme and can allow for a hose to be used, such as in late spring, summer, or early fall. Once all this has been taken care of, you’ll be ready to take the first step in the process of how to clean an aluminum fence.  

Step 1 – Preliminary Wash

First, use a wet cloth or your garden hose over the surface of your fence. This will remove dirt and debris such as dust, grass clippings, cobwebs, bird droppings, and dead insects from your fence. If using a hose, consider using a bottom-up then up-bottom motion, so that debris finds its way to the ground and you can avoid streaks. If using a damp cloth, make sure it is warm, so as to loosen debris from your fence faster.  

Step 2 – Lather Up

Next, you can use some dish soap and a little vinegar to get the real tough grime and stains out, as well as give your fence an awesome shine. There are more heavy-duty cleansers you can use to counter specific tasks, such as Simple Green for tougher stains and CLR for hard water stains.  

Step 3 – Rinse

Once you’re done with the soap/vinegar mix or stronger detergents, you must rinse your fence. It’s more efficient to use a hose for this task, and remember to utilize the bottom-up/up-bottom technique to avoid streaks.  

Step 4 – Dry

The next two steps are not entirely necessary but performing them improves the look of your fence by leaps and bounds. For a lustrous finish, it’s best to dry your fence with a clean towel. This will not only keep debris from sticking to the fence but will keep watermarks from appearing.  

Step 5 – Wax

If you have the time, your fence isn’t that large, or you really want to impress the neighbors, you can apply automotive wax to your fence. Not only will this improve the immediate aesthetic, but it will also help avoid aluminum oxidation, a process by which over years, your fence becomes a dull, chalky gray color and grainy to the touch.  

Finding a Replacement Fence

Despite your best efforts at cleaning and maintenance, there may come a time when physical damage, rust, or corrosion necessitates you to replace parts or the whole of your fence. If that is the case, visit Mondi Aluminum. With over 25 years in the business, Mondi Aluminum offers custom aluminum fencing of exquisite beauty, exceptional strength, and maximum durability at competitive prices. Simply contact us via phone or email to discuss your needs and receive a quote, or visit our onsite location and have one of our knowledgeable and personable customer service representatives help you with exactly what you are looking for!