If you’re planning to open a pressure washer business, you’ll need to make sure you have the right equipment for the job. Having the best pressure washer for your needs will make your job easier and satisfy your customers as they get their property cleaned. So whether you’re thinking about buying one pressure washer to start or want a few different ones, here are the main factors to consider.
Decide on the PSI You Need
One of the most important decisions to make is how powerful you want the pressure washer to be. You might assume the more powerful, the better, as you’ll be able to quickly clean tough stains from most surfaces. But if your pressure washer is too powerful, you won’t be able to use it on certain surfaces without damaging them, at which point you’ll have to depend on your pressure washer liability insurance policy to pay for repairs!
Fortunately, you can reduce the chance of damage by choosing equipment that has the right amount of pressure in the water spray, which is referred to as pounds per square inch (PSI) when it comes to pressure washers. Before you choose equipment based on PSI, think about what kinds of surfaces you’ll likely be cleaning the most.
For instance, if you want to focus on washing cars with a pressure washer, one with a PSI of about 1,300 should be sufficient. If you plan to focus on cleaning decks and patio furniture, a PSI of 1,500 is ideal. Driveways and house siding usually require about 2,000 PSI to get clean. But if you’re going to be removing mold, mildew, or graffiti from concrete and other strong surfaces, you’ll need a pressure washer with a PSI of 3,000 to 4,000. If your business is growing and you expect to clean a variety of stained surfaces, consider buying a few pressure washers so you have just the right amount of PSI no matter the job.
Electric or Gas?
Another big decision to make is whether you want an electric or gas-powered pressure washer. Each type has pros and cons. Keep in mind that your choice here may determine how much PSI you get, as gas pressure washers tend to have more PSI than basic electric models. For example, electric pressure washers are known for being best for smaller jobs, as they usually have PSIs of about 1,400. As a result, an electric pressure washer may be an affordable way to get started washing cars and patio furniture for your customers. Just note that this equipment needs to be plugged into a wall outlet or extension cord.
If you want to do larger jobs that require more PSI, look into gas-powered equipment, as it
usually has 2,000 PSI or more. And since it runs on gas, you won’t have to plug it in, making it a bit more portable as you clean driveways, sidewalks, or house siding. Of course, you’ll have to refill the gas after a few jobs, so be sure to budget for this expense if you choose a gas-powered pressured washer.
Hot vs Cold Water
Pressure washers come in a few varieties, and one distinguishing feature is the water
temperature. Before you decide whether you need a cold water pressure washer or a hot water variety, look at the advantages of each. Most stains only require you to use cold water, as long as you have equipment with the right PSI. For instance, mud, dirt, sand come off pretty fast with cold water. You can even strip paint with cold water from equipment with a strong enough PSI. So if these are the types of jobs you plan to take on, you can save money by sticking to a cold water pressure washer. Hot water pressure washers usually cost a lot more than the cold water versions, but you’ll find that some jobs require hot water, so the extra cost is worth it depending on the jobs you want to do. In particular, industrial properties with a lot of grease, oil, and grime typically need hot water sprayed on to get truly clean. And properties involved in the restaurant industry usually require hot water due to all the grease there. As a bonus, a hot water pressure washer can kill bacteria and sanitize surfaces, which is perfect for any business dealing with food. These are the main details to think about before you buy equipment for your pressure washer business. Once you decide on these factors, consider whether you want extra features—such as a soap tank and an adjustable nozzle—depending on your needs and your budget. Then you should be ready to take the next steps of opening a business, such as getting a business license, obtaining insurance, and renting a business property.