Santa Claus couple cleaning up exteriors

Photos by Marlena Sloss/The Herald
Burgess Heberer, co-owner of Santa Claus Exterior Cleaning LLC, power-washes playground equipment at Lincoln Trail Elementary School in Lamar on Wednesday. The new company is donating their services to clean and sanitize the playground equipment of the North Spencer County School Corporation elementary schools.


SANTA CLAUS — When Burgess and Courtney Heberer replaced their roof last year, they couldn’t believe how much algae and gunk had built up over the years.

The Santa Claus couple didn’t want the same fate to befall their new roof, so Burgess hopped online to research how to prevent the buildup. There, he learned about soft washing, a technique that treats surfaces to keep algae and other substances from building up on surfaces without the high power of a pressure washer. That discovery led the pair to found the new business Santa Claus Exterior Cleaning.

The couple uses the soft washing technique to clean rooftops, driveways, sidewalks and playgrounds. The first step is application of the cleaning agent, which also protects against algae growth. Afterward, the pair washes off the cleaning agent with hoses that use about the same pressure a garden hose.

“We’re not Uncle Randy with a pressure washer,” Burgess joked.

For rooftops and siding, Burgess said, the soft wash method is preferred as most manufacturers advise against pressure washing the shingles.

The pair began training in the soft wash method in January. As they progressed through the classes, they began to see surfaces that could use a cleaning everywhere. Rooftops and siding covered in algae, playgrounds that could use a good clean, even driveways. Seeing that reinforced the need for their business locally.

Courtney Heberer, co-owner of Santa Claus Exterior Cleaning LLC, power-washes playground equipment at Lincoln Trail Elementary School in Lamar on Wednesday.

“When you see a need that needs to be filled, you have to fill it,” Courtney said. “That’s part of being a member of our community.”

Giving back to the community it part of the Heberers’ business plan. Each year, they will donate 10% of their profits back to the community. This year, they plan to use those funds to purchase Christmas gifts for children in need.

They also plan to donate their labor when they can. This week, the pair will be cleaning and sanitizing the playgrounds at the North Spencer County School Corporation’s four elementary schools — Chrisney Elementary, David Turnham Education Center, Lincoln Trail Elementary and Nancy Hanks Elementary — ahead of the first day of school.

Purchasing Christmas gifts and cleaning school playgrounds made the most sense as the first charitable projects for the Heberers, Courtney said, because both have dedicated their careers to helping kids. Courtney teachers at Jasper Middle School, and Burgess works in research and development of infant formula for Mead Johnson Nutrition.

Although Santa Claus Exterior Cleaning is only a few months old, the Heberers already have plans for growth. Burgess has been researching gentle washing techniques for headstones and memorials that are used at Arlington National Cemetery and other national parks. Other services are in the works as well.

More information and to get a free, individualized quote, visit the Santa Claus Exterior Cleaning Facebook page or email The Heberers can also be reached by phone at 812-545-7050.

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