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Power Washer vs Pressure Washer

Power Washer vs Pressure Washer

Cleaning outdoor surfaces such as house exteriors, patios, driveways, RV’s and boats requires a lot more power than what your average garden hose can provide. Power washers and pressure washers are heavy-duty, high-pressure machines which use water to remove grime and gunk.

Power washers and pressure washers may look the same, and have very similar end results, but there are a few key differences between them. If you’re looking for a heavy-duty washer to handle your tough outdoor cleaning jobs, read on to find out which is best for you: power or pressure?

What is a power washer?

Power washers blast out a stream of heated water at a high pressure from a hand-held wand. The water has been heated to a high temperature, and is often mixed with detergent. The most obvious difference between pressure washers and power washers is the heat factor.

You still get the high-pressure factor with a power washer, but it’s not the only factor to remove the grime and dirt. When hot water is applied to soiled surfaces at a high-pressure, the stains are melted and corroded by the heat as they are dislodged by the pressure at the same time.

You can choose which temperature you would like the water to be heated to, depending on what you are cleaning. The thermostat will tell you what the temperature is, and you can begin your cleaning when it reaches the desired temperature.

The cleaning power of heat, water and pressure can be fortified by adding detergent. Just like washing the dishes, detergent can get outdoor surfaces shiny and clean and help remove caked-on grime. Power washers have a tank especially for the purpose of adding detergent to the cleaning system, so you can add whichever detergent fits your needs.

Pros

  • Can remove greasy, oil-based stains and stuck-on messes from hard surfaces
  • Can clean large areas and industrial/commercial areas thoroughly and quickly, saving time and offering quality maintenance of work spaces

Cons

  • Power washers can be a lot less sleek and discreet in terms of their construction, as they need to house more technology. If you want a lightweight, compact washer which is easy to store in tight spaces, then consider a pressure washer if your cleaning jobs are appropriate for it
  • Power washers tend to be more expensive than pressure washers, so make sure it’s completely necessary for you to have one before you make the investment

What is a pressure washer?

A pressure washer is a washer designed for exterior cleaning which uses water being blasted at a high pressure through a hose and wand. The cleaning power comes from the pressure at which the water is being blasted, as it forcefully dislodges and moves debris.

The difference between a pressure washer and a power washer is that pressure washers do not heat the water. Pressure washers come with a variety of nozzles which you can interchange.

These nozzles change the width and shape of the water stream so you can customize your cleaning style for each job. More narrow nozzles create a stronger, more powerful stream, and fanned nozzles disperse the pressure for a gentler pressure.

Pros

  • Pressure washers are more likely to be compact and lightweight which makes them easy to transport, store, and maneuver from job to job
  • Pressure washers don’t require as much care and maintenance as power washers as their technology and construction is less complex
  • Pressure washers can reach an extremely high level of force, which means you can make non-greasy stains disappear and reveal a new-looking surface underneath
  • Pressure washers are generally far more affordable than power washers

Cons

  • Your cleaning options are limited with pressure washers, as they won’t make much of a different on oily stains and baked-on mess. Even if you add detergent to your washer, it’s not going to be enough to corrode greasy substances
  • Like power washers, pressure washers can be a bit dangerous in the wrong hands, as the pressure is high enough to cause injury to people, and serious damage to delicate surfaces and objects

Which one is best for you?

Before you hand your money over for a power washer or pressure washer, think about what kinds of jobs you need it for. There’s no point in buying something which isn’t going to serve you as well as it could. Here are some pointers to help you choose:

Jobs for a power washer

  • Cleaning grease and oil from concrete surfaces
  • Clearing stuck-on weeds, mold, mildew, moss from in between paving stones and bricks
  • Thick and dried-on mud deposits on concrete driveways, sidewalks or patios
  • Cleaning large areas with lots of caked-on matter
  • Cleaning industrial or commercial spaces where time and efficiency is important, as power cleaning gets the job done much faster than pressure washing

Consider

  • Power washers tend to need a bit more maintenance and upkeep as they have heating apparatus
  • Do your cleaning needs justify the cost and maintenance of a power washer, or would a pressure washer be sufficient?

Jobs for a pressure washer

  • Non-greasy stains and debris on driveways and patios
  • Dirt and dust on RV’s and boats
  • Clearing large deposits of leaves, weeds and dried grass
  • Clearing dry grime (dust and mud) from house exteriors

Consider

  • Greasy and oily messes won’t be cleaned as effectively with a pressure washer as they would with a power washer
  • Pressure washing tends to take a bit longer than power washing, due to the lack of heat being applied to the surface, so it’s best for smaller jobs

Conclusion

When comparing power washers and pressure washers, it all comes down to the temperature of the water. Power washers use heated water to melt away gunk and greasy messes, while pressure washers use pure force to dislodge and shift dryer materials. Both are just as good as the other, because it all depends on the job at hand. Assess your cleaning needs and match them up to the washer that best fits the job.

How to Pressure Wash Your House

How to Pressure Wash Your House

When you look at a nice, clean house, you look at a work of a pressure washer. A pressure washer is a machine that gives you a big boost in cleaning home exteriors. It is a specially-designed tool which sprays high-pressured water, cleaning dirt and mildew and making your house perfect again. But don’t be fooled by its superior look – cleaning your house is not something to be taken lightly. It needs time, energy and a lot of preparation. Preparation is the most important thing, because your idea of a perfect house could end up disastrous pretty quickly.

First of all, when you make a decision to buy a pressure washer, you need to research. You must keep in mind that various types of facades withstand various types of pressure washers. This means that different housing materials can take different amounts of pressure.

For example, painted soft-grain wood can withstand no more than a 1500 PSI (pound per square inch) model. Also, a wide spray nozzle may be needed to release the water pressure from one point. Otherwise, you may find holes and faded color on your facade, especially when it comes to extremely vulnerable materials, like stucco.

For stronger surfaces, like vinyl, you can use up to 3,000 PSI. So, when buying a pressure washer, you should pick carefully and accordingly. Some pressure washers have detergent dispensers for a further cleaning solution. Keep in mind that there are some other tools that you need to possess alongside the pressure washer.

You need to have a clean water supply, garden hose, non-phosphate cleaning detergent, scrub brush, plastic coverings and duct tape. A pair of safety glasses should prevent vision-loss from the reflecting dirt. Make a plan and you are ready for action.

Use the plastic coverings to isolate every hole on the surface, as you don’t want accidently to cause mold inside the walls. Also, you must isolate every external light, outlet, electrical meter and other visible cables as well as you can.

It’s best to turn off the main fuse of your house to establish maximum safety. You should know that window screens are no match for high-powered pressure washers. It’s best to avoid the delicate screens. You should remove any kind of flora, too.

Connect your water supply to your machine with a gardening hose. If needed, mix the cleaning detergent and fill the pressure washer’s detergent dispenser. Combine the detergent with water. You are going to need approximately 450 kg of detergent for every 15 liters of water.

Remember to use only detergents intended for pressure washers. When pressure washing with detergent, it’s better to wash from top to bottom. That way the detergent will have more time to do its magic.

Look ahead for any ground instabilities when putting up a ladder to reach higher spots. Clean is good but safety is a priority. Be aware that you need to hold the ladder with one hand and spray with the other. This is the number one cause why pressure washing is considered extremely risky by insurance companies.

Use the brush to manually remove any dirt and mildew from the surface if reachable. Before starting, you should check the pressure washer’s impact on the wall. Test a small section on the wall that you’ve already cleaned.

Try various distances and select the optimal one. The dirt shouldn’t stay and the paint shouldn’t suffer. For the best results, keep the washer on a 75-degree angle for walls and a 45-degree angle for roof overhangs and underhangs.

Don’t spray directly on corner  as the pressure focus grows and at that time these machines are extremely powerful. Start spraying from the top to bottom of the walls, so the dirt will slide down alongside the water and you will leave clean and sparkling walls.

Sometimes you will need to combine it with the brush for more severe mildew and dirt. On some parts of the wall, you may remove the mildew but a green stain will remain. Then you definitely need a cleaning solution of liquid bleach. You should use anti-mildew concentrate. Spray on the area, scrub with the brush, rinse and then wash with the powerful pressure washer machine. It leaves a stainless, remarkable surface. If not, repeat the same procedure.

You should also consider changing the nozzle and experimenting with other varieties. There are three different angles – 15-degrees, 25-degrees and a 40-degree nozzle. There is also a 0-degree nozzle for more heavily-stained surfaces. This is clearly not a nozzle to play with because the water comes out straight, causing a reckless, harmful effect. Use it only to remove massive quantities of dirt.

If you possess a gas-powered pressure washer, make sure that your machine is filled up correctly while working. Expel any excessive air from the hose by pulling the washer’s trigger. You should see the excessive air coming out in the form of steam.

One of the most important things you should practice is to squeeze the trigger to its maximum, so the pump will suffer no harm. You also have to make a consistent side-to-side motion with the hose. That way you put pressure to every part of the facade equally, so no damage will be done.

Pay close attention to all of your future sections on the wall so there is no error that can cause problems

If you plan to repaint your house, pressure washing is a must. Every inch of the wall must be perfectly clean. After you are done, it is best to give the house some time to properly dry out. Usually, this is about two days so the house can be ready for its new skin.

Pressure washers do tend to save water. They can be incredibly effective and efficient. But the coefficient of effectiveness is mostly determined by you. Choosing the correct machine and using it responsibly increases the probability of ending up with a nice, clean, perfect house; just as though it was newly-built.

Pressure Washer Tips

Pressure Washer Tips

Pressure washers have become an essential tool of most households. Whether you want to clean driveways or hard-to-reach spaces, they take care of it all. These reliable and useful contraptions will revolutionize your cleaning methods and keep your home and cars well-maintained.

Beginners tend to view pressure washers as magic wands. Swish and flick it around and your properties will be instantly clean. But in reality, this delicate process take time and it’s a bit more complicated than that. Pressure washers are indeed extremely productive and energy-saving, but selecting the right machine and using it correctly plays a huge part in achieving the best results.

There are two types – electric and gas-powered. Both come with a variety of features and work quickly and dramatically. We will now give you some of the best tips which are applicable for both categories. By practicing these tips, you will be maximizing the potential of your pressure washer and will finish cleaning tasks in the most efficient way possible.

The right tip

The performance of pressure washers is greatly affected by the nozzle/tip. The majority of models on the market come with a variety of interchangeable tips that have two purposes. One is for high pressure water output at different spray angles and the other is to decrease the pressure and draw the cleansing agent.

The nozzles/tips come in several colors – red, green, yellow and white, each with its own function and range of degrees from 0 to 40.

The basic rule is that the smaller the angle, the more powerful the liquid execution. For example, a 0-degree angle nozzle will work best on those pesky smudges you find on your driveway.

For moving garbage or other debris away from your house, a 25 or 40-degree angle nozzle will be more suitable. Caution: make sure that the nozzle is securely attached to the trigger gun before using. As a consequence of not doing this, the tip may harm property or persons or may get lost.

Using chemicals

It is very important that you use detergent and other cleansing solutions that are specially formulated for pressure washer use. Citrus Degreaser and Super Film Remover are two examples. Citrus Degreaser is for removing hard grease and industrial cleaning whereas Super Film Remover is generally used for minor dirt or car washing.

Some pressure washers come with detergent injectors which give a seamless, continuous outflow of the cleaning solution into the water. Unapproved detergents may be harmful for pressure washer components and may not be eco-friendly. Also, keep in mind that different cleaning agents react differently to different materials.

Power

Before starting your cleaning chores, it’s a good idea to test the capability of your pressure washer. Aim a few feet away from the actual object. Keep the hose a few feet away from the item or surface you want to clean.  Slowly move the hose a couple of times back and forth to check if the surface is clean. Slowly move the hose closer to the object if extra cleaning is required. Edging the cleaning wand gradually towards the surface/object is best because the jet of liquid ejected from pressure washers is powerful and may cause damage to the item if it is too close.

Fragile items

Take great care when spraying at or around plants, windows, light fixtures, glass objects etc. They can break if the water pressure is aimed at a directly at them. Furthermore, to avoid spraying under the sides of an object and causing it to collapse, point the trigger gun downwards. Another thing to be mindful of is to be careful when cleaning windowsills. There is a great chance that water might seep through tiny holes and into your home. Alternatively, you can check to see if the window is airtight/watertight.

Maintaining control

It is easy to lose control when pressure washing. It is generally fun to clean with it, but you may get exuberant and start spraying everywhere rather than at a set target. You are more liable to miss spots this way if the area is large and will need to go over it twice. Plan out how you will execute the cleaning; first vertically and then horizontally or vice versa.

Let the solution work

The cleansing agent used needs time to react and do its job. Wait 5 to 10 minutes and not more for the dirt to start dissolving. If you wait too long, the soap suds will begin to dry out. Once you are ready to rinse, use a top-to-bottom approach.

Injuries are not fun

Here are some pointers on how to minimize damage and avoid injury while pressure washing.

Electric shocks

Water is a good conductor of electricity. In most pressure washing situations, it is obvious that you are going to get wet. This is risky and increases your chances of getting electric shocks from outlets and wires. If you will be doing cleaning work requiring a ladder, check beforehand for overhead power lines. Don’t blast water at the main electrical sources of the house such as an electric meter, power outlets or outdoor lights.

Proper support

Your ladder should have good support before you climb it, especially considering that you will be using your pressure washer while on top. The proper angle for a ladder is between 70 to 75 degrees. The tricky part is standing firm on the ladder and using both hands to operate the pressure washer. If at any point you are uncomfortable, call a professional.

Color-coded nozzles

The red nozzle sprays at 0 degrees, the yellow nozzle at 15 degrees, the green nozzle at 25 degrees and the white nozzle at 40 degrees. The red nozzle should only be used for certain applications which require extreme pressure. As mentioned above, keep the hose away a few feet away before gradually bringing it closer to the surface.

Conclusion

Cleaning is a chore which can require effort and is time consuming. By using the correct tools and accessories with your pressure washer and following these tips and tricks, your cleaning tasks will be accomplished efficiently and you will never worry again about keeping your interior and exterior properties consistently well-maintained.