How to Clean a Brick Patio

Reading Time: 4 minutes

It’s that time of the year again. Looking at your patio, it seems like it’ll need a good cleaning. Please don’t fret because it’s not as daunting a task as you think. This chore will be a breeze when you know how to clean a brick patio properly! In this post, we’ll talk about the methods of cleaning your brick patio, the tools you’ll need, and the different cleaning solutions you can use.
Let’s get started!

Step 1: Get the Tools You’ll Need

The supplies to clean your patio will depend on the cleaning method you’ll go for or how many you want to try to be thorough.
Roughly speaking, these are the things you need:

  • Broom with stiff bristles
  • Rubber gloves
  • Goggles
  • Hose
  • Bucket
  • Your choice of cleaning solution
  • A portable sprayer
  • Hardwire bristle brush/brushes
  • Alternatively, a low-pressure power washer

Step 2: Pick the Cleaning Products or Solutions

There are a lot of options for cleaning products that you can use in this scenario.

  • Borax
  • Vinegar
  • Bleach
  • Muriatic Acid

No matter which one you choose, remember always to use the proper safety gear when handling chemicals. Also, make sure to follow the ratios listed below or on the packaging of the cleaning product itself.

Step 3: Choose the Right Timing for Cleaning

Ideally, there’s a perfect temperature for cleaning anything brick-related, which is 50 degrees. This is so that the cleaning products and water used on the patio floor don’t dry so fast and leave a layer of silt you might need to clean again.

Step 4: Weed the Ground

Pull out all of the weeds in and around your brick patio. You can do this by kneeling and using a weeding tool to pry out the weeds, base, and roots gently. It’s best to do this right after you loosen the soil or it rains. Don’t forget to use gloves while doing this because some varieties of weeds have pricks on their stems and pointy leaves. These types have very deep root systems that are difficult to pull. You can cut these with garden shears to make things easier.

Step 5: Sweep up the Debris

Afterward, you’ll have to do a general sweep of your patio. Remove whatever dust and dirt were left behind while pulling out the weeds. A leaf blower can come in handy to ensure all the dust is out of the crevices.

Step 6: Rinse and Treat the Grime

If there is still a bit of dust left over, possibly remnants of the grout when it was being put there, rinse the bricks with a bucket of water or hose them down.
Once that is done and dry, you now have the option of either using vinegar or mild detergent to treat the bricks. This would kill whatever other organic material could be lurking there and help with the cleaning as well.

Step 7: Scrub the Patio with Cleaning Substance

It’s time for some hard scrubbing using gloves, your preferred cleaning solution, and a brush. That’s when you want to be as meticulous as possible. Let’s go through the details of using each cleaning product to clean your brick patio.

Borax (1 Tablespoon per Gallon of Water)

Rinse and repeat as often as necessary to remove all the stains. Just make sure to rinse fast so there won’t be any streaks. Borax is a terrific all-around cleaner, and it works particularly well for the spaces between the bricks in your patio.

Vinegar (1 Part per 15 Parts of Warm Water)

A vinegar solution works best on your patio if you scrub first, soak it for a time with the solution, then scrub again. Be careful around plants when using this because vinegar can dry them out.
Some power washers have compartments for vinegar solutions as well. This means you can directly add the solution while power-washing.


Chlorine bleach is not a good idea when cleaning an area near plants and gardens. The chlorine in the bleach can linger and induce severe harm to other organisms. That’s why we recommend you opt for powdered oxygen bleach instead (sodium percarbonate – Na2H3CO6). The formula should be on the packaging itself, so read the instructions carefully before use.

Muriatic Acid

A solution with muriatic acid is tough on stains. However, you must spot-check beforehand because it might discolor the bricks. Once you’re ready, follow directions on how much water to dilute the acid, which you’ll find on the package. Be careful when you go down to scrubbing, though, because the acid is extremely harsh on the skin.

Step 8: Power-wash Your Brick Patio

There are a lot of power washers on the market that you can purchase for your home. If you have one, you may want to use it to clean your patio; just make sure you go for the soft wash option and low pressure.

Generally, a PSI of 1,250 to 1,500 is the best for the bricks. Concrete and bricks won’t be able to handle anything above 3,000 PSI. Keep in mind that the distance between the nozzle and the bricks will impact the strength of the cleaning. So, you’ll want to find a middle ground between too close and too far. Also, begin with the nozzle that uses the widest angle. If that doesn’t clean as much, you can only try to use nozzles for the higher PSI.

In Summary

Cleaning a brick patio can be done in several ways, from using chemicals and cleaning solutions to power cleaning. Prepping your patio is an excellent way to start making cleaning easier. Don’t forget to remove the weeds, sweep the patio, and rinse it. As for the cleaning solution, you can go for vinegar, bleach, acid, borax, and more. Now you know how to clean your brick patio properly. It’s not so hard after all.

About Emily Leake

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