How To Choose A Pressure Washer

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If you're in the market for a new pressure washer then there are several things you need to consider when choosing the most suitable machine for you. And with so many different models available today, selecting the unit best suited to you can be difficult.

First of all, a pressure washer or pressure cleaner uses a powered motor to pump water through a flexible hose and out of a nozzle connected to a lance. This results in a much lower flow rate than that of a standard garden hose however the water pressure is many times greater.

There are so many different terms relating to pressure washers that it can become quickly confusing when shopping for one and we hope this guide will help answer some of the questions you may have about them.

Let's take a look at what some of these terms mean.

PSI: Water pressure is measured in pounds per square inch and the PSI is the pressure required to break the chemical bond between the surface and the stain. The stronger the bond is then the more pressure is needed. Low-pressure washers usually start at 750-1500 psi and are ideal for light duties such as cleaning garden furniture, tools, motorbikes and rubbish bins. Medium range machines generate pressures between 1500 to 3000 psi and are great for cleaning guttering, vehicles and boats while heavy duty washers produce more than 3000 psi and are superb for decking, patios, concrete driveways, paint preparation and farm equipment.

GPM: Water flow is measured in gallons per minute and the larger the GPM then the more surface area a pressure washer can clean and the faster it can do it too.

HP: The horsepower of a pressure cleaner is divided up to produce both the PSI and the GPM.

CU: Units of cleaning power is an easy way to compare pressure washers to determine which one is the most powerful. The CU for a machine is the product of the PSI and the GPM and the higher the number is then the more powerful the pressure washer. For example, a machine with 4 gpm and 2500 psi is more powerful than one with 2 gpm and 4000 psi.

To help select the right pressure washer for you, firstly determine what you will be using it for and what is the minimum PSI needed to clean the surface. Next, look at the GPM rate because the higher it is then the less time your cleaning will take. Always purchase a machine adequate for your needs as one that does not have enough cleaning power will cost you extra clean up time and more expenses in the future.

Now that you have an idea of the cleaning power of the machine you require, it's now time to choose between a gas powered machine or an electric one.

Petrol or diesel powered pressure washers are generally much more powerful and durable than electric ones and offer the portability necessary for outdoor work while providing higher pressures and flow rates for larger cleaning jobs. Gas powered washers however can only be used outdoors because the engines generate toxic carbon monoxide gas.

Electric pressure washers can be used indoors or outdoors and are often quieter, lighter, smaller and cheaper than gas powered washers and are great for cleaning smaller surface areas

Some other considerations you may also like to think about before finally making your purchase includes the water temperature required as hot water machines clean faster and more thoroughly than cold water ones making them ideal for industrial and farm use and also the range of accessories compatible with your machine.

We hope this guide has helped you purchase the most suitable pressure washer for your cleaning needs.

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