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Best Patio Cleaner

6 of the Best Patio Cleaner’s available in the UK.

League Table By: Tony Dimmick

Last Checked: 2nd Apr 2020


Andrew Wilcox

Head Judge: Andrew Wilcox

Channel 4’s Head Judge & Founder of Shed of the Year Andrew Wilcox has worked to help design an impartial judging system for WhatShed. The judging system uses many different parameters to help give a large degree of impartiality to the way we select products for each of the league tables we do. You can read more about the system here.

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Alright, so you’re looking for the best patio cleaner in the UK? Well, we’ve got you covered. Our researchers have spent 9 hours wading through the mountains of comments and reviews and complied the overall consensus into a neat article, giving you all the critical information in one handy read.

To help you make the most informed decision possible, we’re holding nothing back. The good, bad, and the ugly will all be laid bare as we dive into the deepest and darkest researches of the patio cleaning world, returning to you with only the best pearls of wisdom. And so, without any more flowery language, let’s get right to it.

After our initial scout, we cut down the patio cleaner list to six key cleaners, ULTIMA-PLUS, Jarder, Pro-Kleen, Patio Magic!, Wet & Forget, and Kärcher.

ULTIMA-PLUS


Retailer:
Amazon
Price:
£23
Website:

Ultima-Plus seems to do the job, yet there’s still a handful of disgruntled stories. While comments like “am pleased with the results”, “would recommend it”, and “brilliant”, pepper the review section, a good few of these customers singing phrases about the cleaner said they deviated from the instructions and even a few crying it wasn’t worth the price. 

Having said that, green thumbs testified how Ultima-Plus was the best patio cleaner. It saved their time and made their lives easier. Reviews also pointed out the need to give the patio a once over with a pressure washer, and a couple of others even mentioned slight discolouration. 

This cleaner claims to be the “most powerful patio cleaner on the market”, containing 100% more active ingredients than other brands. Using the standard 5L bottle, with 1L of the solution to 9L of water, you can make between 50L and 95L, and clean an area over 400m² of hard surfaces. The area should then be regrowth-free for up to 6-months, although the reviews seem to be hit and miss in this department. 

The cleaner is suitable for all hard indoor and outdoor surfaces and doesn’t seem to have an issue with any of them in particular. Safety isn’t a concern either, with the cleaner being 100% safe and biodegradable. Time-wise, it tends to show results within 1 to 3 days but has been reported to make no visible change at all over a space of a few weeks.

6 reasons to buy: 

  • Out of 300 odd written reviews, there’s an 80% positive vs 20% negative split.
  • Echoing claims of making lives easier and being easy to use. 
  • Numerous reports of saving time.
  • In ideal circumstances, 2-days after application, you should see perfect results.
  • If all goes to plan, you should keep your patio clean for 6-months.
  • Covers a huge 400m².
  • Biodegradable 

5 reasons not to buy: 

  • Discolouration reported.
  • Numerous reports of plants, moss algae, and black mould surviving contact.
  • Multiple accounts of the product having no effect at all. 
  • Various reports of buyers being left disappointed. 
  • A common theme is that the product simply isn’t as powerful of a cleaner as it suggests. 

Jarder


Retailer:
Amazon
Price:
£15
Website:

Jarder does the job but isn’t without its faults. It seems to have mostly positive reviews, with claims that it met people’s patio cleaner expectations, is easy to apply, and some going so far saying it converted them to become long-time users.

While it seems to be considered a good product and works on a variety of surfaces, owners of Indian Sandstone are far from happy, with claims of super discolouration. Other reports of staining White Concrete and Black Metal have also been spotted.

Customer service seems hit and miss too, with a variety of both positive and negative mentions. Some lukewarm comments suggesting it’s only good for patios with light dirt and that it’s not worth the price. But overall it seems to be a good patio cleaner. 

Priding itself on the ability to clean without any effort, Jarder is a super concentrated product, containing 50% more active ingredient than other brands. With 5L of cleaner, you’ll be able to create roughly 30L of the solution, enabling you to cover a 240m² patio. While Indian Sandstone patios aren’t specifically mentioned, you’ll be wise to keep it away from any Indian Sandstone surfaces.

Safety isn’t an issue and is guaranteed 100% once the stuff is dry, however, mixed claims that it needs to be used ‘neat’ might change this, should you be using it undiluted. 

Results should show in 2 to 3 days but have been noted not to appear for 5, while others said it did nothing at all. The product claims it can keep a patio clean for 6-months, but again, a handful of reviews claim otherwise. 

4 reasons to buy: 

  • Out of 270 there ended up a 70% positive 30% negative split.
  • Multiple claims of it being “the best patio cleaner”. 
  • Minimal hassle, easy to use, and time-saving. 
  • Biodegradable. 

5 reasons not to buy:

  • Owers of Indian Sandstone steer clear. 
  • Owers of White Concrete & Black Metal beware.
  • Numerous claims of having no effect at all. 
  • Comments of needing to be persistent and patient seem rife.
  • The 70% positive vs 30% negative split is the lowest of all products. 

Pro-Kleen


Retailer:
Amazon
Price:
£18
Website:

Pro-Kleen seems to be the best patio cleaner if the market favourite is anything to go by. This cleaner has over 3000 written reviews, and an overall happy customer vibe, although with the good comes some bad.

Reviews criticising subpar packaging damaging containers are dotted about. Also, claims that the 5L container only contained 4.5L can also be found. The product is reported to be not as good as it used to be and causes discolouration to clay block paving. Complaints about customer service are can also be found. 

Having said that, it still seems to get the job done with plenty of a happy customer to be found, albeit with a warning, or emphasis, that this isn’t a cleaner, but a moss mould, green mould, and algae remover.

The Pro-Kleen ‘Simply Spray & Walk Away’ markets itself as a “super-powerful outdoor green mould and algae removing solution”, not a cleaner. Despite reviewers claiming to have done a good job cleaning their patio, it’s also marred with reviewers pointing out it didn’t clean anything, just removed green mould and moss algae. 

Pro-Kleen has a moderate concentration, using non-descript language to boast it has “more” active ingredient than “most” other cleaners. Going on to state you can get ‘up to‘ 25L from the 5L (4.5L) bottle. Like the whole list, it claims to be 100% safe once it’s dry, which sounds believable considering its mild concentration.

It’s suitable for all outdoor hard surfaces, so pretty much the usual spots you’ll find green mould and algae. 

5 reasons to buy: 

  • Significantly more reviews with a higher positive review ratio. With 3,200 reviews, it achieved an 85% positive vs 15% negative split.
  • Most customers think it’s a good patio cleaner. 
  • Good delivery times have been noted.
  • Best reported scenarios claim it makes a huge difference overnight.
  • Multiple claims of it being easy and time-saving.
  • Biodegradable.

4 reasons not to buy: 

  • Several reviews mentioned inadequate packaging which damaged the container. 
  • Owners of Clay Blocks should steer clear as discolouration has been reported.  
  • While in %, only 15% left negative written reviews, in real terms that’s almost 500 people who either didn’t like or claimed it didn’t do as promised. Interpret these numbers as you will. 
  • Worst reported scenarios claim it did nothing at all.  

Patio Magic!


Retailer:
Amazon
Price:
£9
Website:

Patio Magic is the next cleaner up for review. A mixture of comments claiming it’s worth the price and a waste of money, but considering this is one of the cheaper cleaners, being worth a few quid doesn’t say much. 

It seems to have gotten the job done for most customers, although even the ones it worked for mentioned it’s super slow at patio cleaning. The product itself claims to take a “few days”, but reviews claimed it worked in “less than a week”, while others said they’re still waiting 4-months on. 

Quite a few positive reviewers also pointed out how they ignored the product instructions and made their own stronger versions, or just applied the cleaner ‘neat’, directly to the surface. But since this comes in a smaller 2.5L bottle, using it like that will ensure you get through a few bottles, as a few buyers mentioned.  

One reviewer thought it was the best patio cleaner and so much they said, “the results had me so shocked and flabbergasted I had to go lay down”. 

Selling itself as “magic” will rarely live up to expectations, and if the reviews, both positive and negative are anything to go by, it certainly isn’t magic. 

The stuff is designed to tackle mould, algae, and moss, as well as be a pre-paint fungicidal wash. It can work on indoor and outdoor hard surfaces, however, the 2.5L container won’t take you too far. 

It claims to work in 2 to 4 days, and then continues cleaning a patio for “weeks to come”, but those claims seem hit and miss, although to be fair it’s a lot more of the side of ‘hit’. 

Like the others, this is biodegradable too. 

5 reasons to buy: 

  • Natural stone patios seem to fare reasonably well with this if the reviews are anything to go by. 
  • Out of 1,104 written reviews, most were positive, with a 77% positive vs 23% negative split. 
  • It’s cheap as chips.
  • Apparently, it smells nice. 
  • Biodegradable 

4 reasons not to buy:

  • It takes longer than it claims, meaning you may need on average a week to see results on your patio. 
  • Multiple claims it just never worked.
  • The 2.5L solution bottle means multiple bottles are needed for larger patios.  
  • The 77% positive vs 23% negative split is the second-lowest of all the products. 

Wet & Forget


Retailer:
Amazon
Price:
£31
Website:

Wet & Forget it a product that, well, suitably, you will wet and forget all about because it’ll take so long to work. 

Most reviews, both good and bad, seem to focus on the absolute necessity for patience on this one. Some people claim it took days, others say weeks, some even suggested months, while one review mentioned a year. 

That being said, the overall feeling was that it does what it claims, and it left a fair few reviewers impressed with the results and little effort needed. 

There were comments of it smelling awful and it being a waste of money, although, by the looks of it, it does work and is one of the best patio cleaners. It just takes time, and you may need to make a concentrated mix than suggested. 

The main features seem to be how the product is environmentally friendly, won’t cause damage, has no shelf life, and is biodegradable. Which I guess is great, but seems to be similar to a car marketing that it has wheels; you expect it to do these things. 

The bottle is a standard 5L which, if following the instructions, should make 30L of cleaner and cover 100m² to 300m², “depending on the patio’s porosity”. 

It claims to be an easy low effort product, that doesn’t require any scrubbing or pressure washers being taken to it, and, for a change, reviewers seem to agree. Those looking for faster results mentioned the breaking out a jet washer in frustration. 

5 reasons to buy: 

  • From 2,079 written reviews, it has an 87% positive vs 13% negative split, the second-highest rating out of these 6 contenders. 
  • Multiple claims of it being great at cleaning patios, leaving buyers impressed. 
  • Requires minimum effort.
  • No shelf life.
  • Biodegradable. 

5 reasons not to buy: 

  • Seems to take a very long time to work. Patience is definitely required. 
  • Some claim it will never work. 
  • From 5L you don’t can’t mix too much solution. 
  • Need to buy multiple bottles.
  • One of the more expensive. 

Kärcher Patio Cleaner


Retailer:
Amazon
Price:
£19
Website:

Kärcher, as the name implies, is an import. This is relevant as it seems to come with instructions printed in what was described as “possibly Spanish”. 

Multiple buyers made claims that the product felt “washed out”, “watered down”, and that what they ordered from Amazon wasn’t a genuine Karcher product.

Others, even the positive reviews, compared it to a washing up liquid and stated that while it does the job, it’s nothing special, going on to point out the low price matches its effectiveness. 

This one seems to require a good bit of elbow grease too, many positive reviewers having put the product in a jet washer and going from there.

A really poor container design kept coming up too, making opening the thing a challenge in itself. 

It seems to be made as a soap more than a powerful cleaner. The product is intended to be used with a Karcher pressure washer, meaning they want you to buy other products of theirs, but as many people pointed out, you can use it with whatever brand pressure washer you want. 

Due to its lacking in intensity, it doesn’t seem to be the best cleaner for patios, as most positive reviews come from people cleaning their cars with the stuff. 

Also, if you have to use it with a pressure washer, you may as well save the cash and just take the pressure washer to the patio by itself.

3 reasons to buy: 

  • Out of 427 written reviews, it ended up with an 82% positive vs 18% negative split.  
  • Cheaper than other cleaning products. 
  • If you’re looking for some extra ‘oomph’ for your pressure washer.

4 reasons not to buy: 

  • Unclear foreign language instructions. 
  • Awkward and sometimes damaged lid. Many reviewers mentioned how it’s challenging to open. 
  • Poorly designed container causes the solution to spill when pouring. 
  • Less powerful than other cleaners. More of a soap. 

What is the best way to clean a patio?

There are a few good ways to clean patios, and quite frankly the best way depends on personal factors. How much free time you have, how long you want to spend doing it, whether you’re willing to use a bit of elbow grease, and if you’re the type who doesn’t mind ‘chemicaling’ the place up.

For those willing to get down and dirty, and don’t want to use chemicals, the general consensus seems to be pressure washing is best. And it seems the experts over at Which? think the same, adding, “A pressure washer is far quicker, easier and more effective than using a scrubbing brush and hose, but only if you know how to get the job done properly” (1).

If you don’t have a pressure washer though, a stiff-bristled broom will do the job.

If you’re trying to clean stains off patios, it’s probably better to use chemicals. According to the Natural Stone Institute (2), “surface stains can often be removed by cleaning with an appropriate cleaning product or household chemical”.

Chemicals get the job done with less effort but risk causing discolouration if you’re not careful. Not to mention damage to plants and animals.

Acidic chemicals should be avoided, as our friends over at PavingExperpt claim, “Acids and acid-based cleaners can have a deleterious effect (some would say a horrific effect) on certain types of concrete and natural stone paving” (3).

 

Can I use bleach to clean patio?

To put it simply, yes, you can use bleach for patio cleaning. However, it is a strong chemical and isn’t advised if you’re not into throwing chemicals everywhere. Beach is a toxic cleaning solution that can poison you, plants, and any other living organisms. But that’s not just our opinion, the good folk over at Hunker also feel the same, calming“Bleach is a toxic cleaning solution that can poison you, your children or your pets…”(4).

However, they also knowledge it’s good at removing “food stains… algae, mildew, mould and moss.” (4) Alternatively, you can use ammonia to clean.

WhatShed Top Tip – NEVER use bleach and ammonia together as it will create dangerous toxic fumes. Healthline authorities directly state, “Mixing bleach and ammonia can be deadly.” (5). 

 

What is the best chemical patio cleaner?

Going by reviews alone, we have to testify that ‘Wet & Forget’ it the best chemical patio cleaner; however, no patio cleaners seem to be without their faults.

You need to take into consideration what type of material you’ll be cleaning, what plants you want to be removed, and how long you have to wait.

If you’re looking to make immediate changes, a super-intensive cleaner like ‘ULTIMA-PLUS’ or bleach will do a quick job, however, if you have time, less intense chemicals will do the job.

Do your research and make sure you know what you need. The team over at PavingExpert have some great advice. With such gems like, “if chemical warfare is deemed necessary, then a standard weedkiller such as PathClear or Glyphosate will do the job just as effectively as mosskillers without re-colouring the paving” (6), their authority on the subject couldn’t be any clearer.

 

How do you clean patio slabs without chemicals?

Cleaning patio slabs without chemicals is a simple matter of taking some elbow grease to it.

According to the experts over at expert reviewers, you’re going to want to spray the entire surface with water and dissolve “75ml of washing soda in a gallon of hot water and scrub the surface with a brush soaked in the solution, re-dipping as required.”(7)

To put it bluntly, roll up your sleeves and give the patio a good’ol scrub with soapy water.

You can resort to using a pressure washer if you’re unable or unwilling to get down on your hands and knees. Putting aside how much more fun they are, they’re powerful little machines that can make a significant difference to your patio without the need for any chemicals or soaps, although, filling the pressure washer with detergent can speed the process along.

 

References

(1) https://www.which.co.uk/reviews/pressure-washers/article/cleaning-your-patio-with-a-pressure-washer

(2) https://www.naturalstoneinstitute.org/consumers/stains

(3) https://www.pavingexpert.com/maintain_02

(4) https://www.hunker.com/12519980/will-bleach-damage-limestone-tile

(5) https://www.healthline.com/health/bleach-and-ammonia

(6) https://www.pavingexpert.com/maintain_02

(7) https://www.expertreviews.co.uk/outdoor/1407350/best-patio-cleaner