What Pressure Washer Do I Need?
Updated: May 8, 2019
Picking the proper pressure washer is essential not only for proper cleaning of specific equipment but from an economic standpoint as well by eliminated unwanted service. Here are a few things to consider when considering a pressure washer:
How much use will the equipment go through on a daily, weekly and monthly basis?What is the environment that the equipment will be operating in?
What are you are cleaning with the equipment?
What kind of cleaning detergent will you be applying?
Who will be operating the pressure washer?
These five simple questions will determine if you need the following requirements for your pressure washer:
Heavy industrial/light industrial – belt driven pump or direct drive pump. A belt driven pump is recommended for 5+ hours of use per day. Belt drive pumps run at lower rpms and will extend the life of the pump for equipment that has a lot of usage.
Paneled unit for heavy debris protection / open unit for easier moving/ gas/electric. If you are cleaning in an industrial manufacturing environment with a lot of dust/product debris, a paneled unit is recommended to protect the moving parts and electrical from damage. An open unit can be lighter and more portable in certain applications if you need to move unit to different areas. Gas powered units allow portable applications both outdoor and indoor where electric units are more restrictive to portability unless the facility is set up properly.
Gallons per minute/psi and hot water or cold water. Volume of water is extremely important when cleaning. More so than psi in many applications. More volume allows you to remove debris and dirt. Higher PSI assists in removing greases and oils. You will need to decide whether to use hot or cold water, depending on what you are trying to clean. For example: if grease is involved, heat is highly recommended. Heat allows debris to be cleaned easier and faster as well as help detergents being used to optimize the effectiveness. For an example in using cold water you can read this blog entry
Upstream or downstream application. Harsh chemicals can eat away at your pump, doing damage over time and reducing the life of your machine. Because of this, there are two ways to add detergents to your wash. Less harsh detergents can be injected upstream (before the pump) to add to the effectiveness of the clean. Harsher detergents can be injected downstream (after the pump) to extend the life of your pump.
Auto/on off – cool bypass – time delay shutdown safety features. Having multiple users of the equipment can sometimes create the need for extra repairs. For example: if you have several users who stop washing for a period of a time and do not turn the unit off, the running of the unit without the constant water flow can cause machine to overheat and damage several of the operating parts.
Getting the answers for your needed pressure washer usage will allow you to not over spend for something you do not need and not under spend on something that won’t get the job done. It also can help in making sure maintenance and repairs are to a minimum.
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