What can I use to clean pigeon crap off my wooden back porch?

What kind of preferably non-toxic cleanser will make it an easier clean? It’s an old wooden porch with peeling paint.

We’re on the 2nd floor of a standard two-flat and last year pigeons got it into their heads that the rafters were a good place to roost (it’s an open porch). They made a terrible mess before my husband put up steel pieces to close off the roosting areas. That made the pigeons go away, but not the crap they left behind. We told ourselves that we would get to it before winter, but never did. Now we’re going to have relatives staying with us over the 4th of July and want to get the back porch all nice so we can sit out there.

Using just plain water is not a problem, but there are people below us and we don’t want to flood their back porch. I’m not looking forward to this. Seriously, there’s a LOT of dried bird crap. We’re appalled at ourselves that we let it go for so long, but it’s not like anyone else saw it. No one ever sees our back porch. Any tips to make it an easier clean-up would be appreciated. Thank you in advance.

Turtle Wax makes a bug & tar remover for cars. You wipe it in and then off. It might be worth trying. Other companies also make various bug, tar, or tree-sap cleaners for car paint.

Another option is to hire someone to wash it with high-pressure water, or maybe rent a pressure-washer yourself. It would probably strip the paint and then you could repaint it. My family had our porch pressure-washed once and I was shocked to find the wood was a light color underneath all the mold and whatnot. It had been getting to be a hazard because it was slippery when wet. Now it’s just bare wood; it was never painted.

If it’s that bad, and the paint is peeling, the latter seems like the best thing to do in the long run to me. You won’t have to get your hands dirty, and it’ll really be clean when you’re done.

Thanks for the tips, I appreciate the response. We’re just renters, so I don’t think we can do anything that will strip the paint, even if it is peeling. Really, I think the landlord should just build a new porch. I very much doubt it would pass a porch inspection, but we never have parties where 30 people will be on it at one time, so it’s not that important.

I was just about to post that I apparently overlooked your comment about the water.

Get some cloth (an old carpet, sacks, curtains, tarp, whatever), soak it in water, leave on top of pigeon crap. Take a watering can to it to keep it saturated but without flooding the neigbours too badly. Lift a couple of times a day and scrub off the now-goopy poop with a broom or brush, then replace cloth to soak remaining dry poop some more.
Repeat until all poop is goopy and scrubbed loose, then wipe up worst of it with the cloth and throw away. Rinse porch clean with water and detergent.

Invite neighbours up for a bottle of wine and a meal to compensate them for inconvenience of having a damp porch for a day or two.

Poop-Off. It helped me get dried, aged pigeon crap off my windshield when I was seriously thinking of trying to score some nitric acid to see if that might work. You should be able to find it in the bird section of any decent-size pet store.

I was going to recommend Poop-off as well.

Thanks riker, slaphead, coffeecat and capybara!

Poop-Off! That’s hilarious! I’ll check it out. I still might have to use slaphead’s suggestion to get the top layer off (yes, there’s many layers…it would probably take 2 gallons of Poop-Off to get started). Yuck and more yuck, but at least the damn pigeons won’t be back this year, not unless they want to be spiked.

Get an ice scraper, used to remove ice from sidewalks.
It will remove the bulk of the droppings.
Then damp mop or use old carprt as suggested in another repy followed by the damp mopping.
Some of the paint may come up but as you say it is old and peeling.