First, have you ever noticed how there is a pulse in the wand of a self-service car wash? These are nothing more than a pressure washer, and the pulse is from a multi-chambered piston pump. From cars to houses the high-pressure pump washer is our go-to cleaning machine.
Pressure Washer Ratings
The industry rates pressure washers by the pressure of the delivered water stream and the amount of water, gallons per minute, forced through the machine. Volume rates how fast the cleaning job will go, and pressure how effective the cleaning. Pressure in the US is in pounds per square inch (PSI) and volume in gallons per minute (GPM). GPM ∙ PSI = Cleaning Power. Add hot water and you have a steam cleaner, not actually steam but hot steaming water. Inject a detergent for cleaning, and plain water for rinsing and you have the modern pressure washer. A cautionary statement is that well systems may not be able to provide sufficient water flow to service a pressure washer. The low-end washers deliver about 1.5 GPM, while the midrange gasoline engine units push about 2.8 gallons per minute. The commercial machine guzzles and push out about 4 GPM, but are usually trailer mounted with their own tank of water.
What Can Pressure Washers Remove?
There are small electric units for the home owner. Our modern urban environments are dirty. Regular, every 5-10 years or so, our homes need to be cleaned to remove airborne particulates, being polluting particles, dirt, grime and grease. The smaller units allow for car washing and pavement cleaning. Pumps in lower pressured units might use an axial flow system, but higher the pressure the more robust the pump. From diaphragms to pistons to get the high pressures. High pressure systems can remove the finish of walls and trim. Effective on walls and trim, the pressure washer not only cleans but can remove flaky paint in preparation of a new paint job. Mold and mildew, both fungus organisms, requires deep clean. Low pressure to clean, high pressure for deep cleaning.
How Does a Pressure Washer Work?
Most other pressure washer are driven by a gasoline engine. Straight washer has a detergent solution tank that mixes its contents with the pressure stream allowing cleaning, followed by a straight water rinse. Some cleaning jobs rely on pressure alone. Add a water heater and your cleaning power goes up, as we all know hot water cleans better than cold. The heaters usually are powered by diesel or kerosene. Commercial units can go up 4,000 PSI, while the electric consumer models are between 1,300 to 1,800 PSI. Consumer gasoline engine units go up to the 2,000 to 3,000 PSI.
Dangers of DIY Pressure Washing?
Pressure cleaning can be destructive of the surface substrate. Anything over 1500 PSI can and will damage soft woods. Higher pressures will compromise stucco. So, the pressure must be set to the job. In pressure washing, lower pressures are perhaps superior to very high pressures.
Many pressure washing companies also offer abrasive blasting to further remove paint and finishes. Abrasives can be matched to the job at hand. Everything from baking soda to sand can be uses as an abrasive. Including iron powders, glass beads and other particulate mater can be used as a blasting media. Homes, decks and sidewalks and fences can be tackled to remove atmospheric pollutants.
Pressure Washing & More in Amagansett, Bridgehampton, East Hampton, Hampton Bays, Montauk, North Haven, North Sea, Noyack, Quogue, Shelter Island, Sag Harbor, Sagaponack, Shinnecock Hills, Southampton, Springs, Wainscott, Watermill, Westhampton, Westhampton Beach, New York
Large jobs demand professional, heavy duty commercial machines. If you don’t have pressing cleaning jobs on a regular basis, the investment in even an electric machine may not be an economically optimal solution. It makes more sense to hire a pro, rather than invest in something you only use once or twice a year. Contact Woodedge Powerwashing for all your pressure washing needs.