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A buyer's guide to high pressure cleaning equipment

Once upon a time, hydroblasting and steam cleaning were restricted to industrial cleaning. Today, home owners facing huge amounts of debris, dirt and leaves stuck to their drives or cars covered in mud, salt and oil can purchase their own pressure washing equipment. Here are some tips on choosing the most suitable washing equipment.

Types of pressure washers

Water jetting a drive with a garden hose will remove loose dirt, but at average pressures per square inch of around 40 lbs, stubborn dirt remains in place. Pressure washers are not only more effective, they also make light work for difficult tasks. A light duty pressure jet washer with pressure ratings between 1300 and 2000 lbs for every square inch is most suitable for pressure cleaning cars, awnings or patio furniture. For power washing large concrete areas, covered in grime, grease and other mild stains, a medium duty power washer, utilising 2000 up to 2600 lbs of pressure per square inch, will be the perfect answer. Power cleaning stubborn grease or other major stains of large concrete surfaces, or removing bits of debris, dirt or flaking paint of large areas to be sealed or painted, will benefit from using a heavy duty, 2700 to 4000 lbs pressure washer. In addition, some washers using hot water and even more powerful contractor models are available for those really tough jobs.

Choosing gas or electric washers

All sizes of pressure washers come in a choice of being powered by gas or electricity. Some of the hot water washers are fired with oil. Gas powered washers allow users more freedom of movement, as they are not tied to a power outlet. They do, however, tend to be much noisier and emit toxic fumes, as do oil fired burners. Extra space to store the fuel will also be required. Though at a disadvantage, due to being tied to electrical outlets, electric pressure washers are quieter and do not emit fumes. As a rule, they are the most suitable equipment for residential and tube cleaning.

Spare parts

When choosing a pressure washer, potential users should also check whether companies supplying cleaners supply a range of pump spares and other parts as well. This will avoid excessive waiting times for ordered parts to arrive, which is particularly annoying if something goes wrong halfway through a large job.

A few final thoughts

The most suitable pressure washer is best determined by assessing the jobs at hand. There is little point in purchasing a high power, expensive washer if it is going to be used to wash a car once in a while. When comparing washers and prices, it also pays to compare what comes with each washer, as standard equipment supplied varies between manufacturers.

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