Sunday, March 3, 2024

How to choose and what to take into account for the proper use of a pressure washer?

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In previous posts we explained what a pressure washer is, how it works and in a future article we will detail how to maximize its use. In this article we will answer questions such as What pressure washer should I buy? How do I know that I am selecting the pressure washer correct? What criteria should I consider when selecting a pressure washer?

We will present a guide to the different types of pressure washers, its characteristics and how to choose the most suitable one according to our needs.

Things to consider when selecting a pressure washer

There are several selection criteria that must be taken into account when purchasing a pressure washer, since depending on the work that is going to be carried out or the time of use that is going to be implemented, among other factors, a pressure washer or other.

Electric pressure washer or Combustion pressure washer

Electrical equipment is the most common or popular, since it is used mainly for domestic tasks due to its low power and low cost. There are also pressure washers professional electricians.
This type of pressure washers It is ideal to be used in places where there is an electrical connection, in small or closed places, or with a large influx, such as residential areas. This type of equipment does not emit noise or emissions of any kind.

There are several models, which have different lengths of the electrical cable, which is a detail that must also be considered. Likewise, the electrical supply required by the equipment must also be taken into account, since there are models that work with one or three phases, and different voltages such as 220, 380 and 400 volts.

Regarding the pressure washers With combustion, they work independently of electricity, so they have greater freedom of movement. They also have higher power so they are recommended for high demand jobs. However, this type of pressure washer must be used in open spaces, due to the carbon monoxide emissions it generates.

On the other hand, combustion equipment is physically larger than electrical equipment, so they require a little more effort when being moved from one place to another.

Pressure washer

Hot water or cold water pressure washer

This factor depends directly on the use that will be given to the machine. The pressure washers of hot water are the most recommended to remove or clean oil or grease, since high temperature water is more effective to decompose them. Additionally, hot water reduces working time and increases the effectiveness of chemical cleaners and detergents. It is also ideal for disinfecting areas with the presence of bacteria.

The pressure washers hot water have a boiler that is responsible for raising the temperature of the water, after going through the pump. The pressure washers cold water take the liquid directly from the water supply.

Pressure from a pressure washer

Pressure is expressed in pound-force per square inch PSI (Pounds-force per Square Inch), also indicated in “bar”.

According to the work to be carried out with the pressure washer, you must select the machine with the minimum pressure required. Here is a reference guide for the pressure required depending on the surface or object to be cleaned.

Necessary pressure according to the application to be executed:

  • 1500 PSI Vehicles
  • Industry 1800 PSI
  • Trucks, Trailers, Tractors, Chassis 1800 PSI
  • Platforms, walls, fences 2000 PSI
  • Stables 3000 PSI
  • Large surfaces, patios 3000 PSI

Should you need to decrease the pressure capacity of a pressure washer, you can do so by using the variable pressure trigger or by reducing the pressure at the equipment valve.

Flow rate of a pressure washer

Flow is indicated in liters per minute (lpm) or gallons per minute (gpm). Regarding the pressure washers refers to, the higher the flow, the higher the cleaning speed. Once the proper pressure for cleaning has been determined, the only way to speed up the process is by increasing the speed of the water.

The flow of a pressure washer it cannot be increased beyond its capacity.

Power of a pressure washer

Power is expressed in horsepower (Hp). The power of a pressure washer is distributed to generate the pressure (PSI) required to expel the water, and to produce the gallons of water (gpm) that the pressure washer expels.

For example, a 2 Hp pressure washer can generate:
2.1 gpm at 1600 PSI or
3.0 gpm at 1100 PSI

The power of the cleaning depends on the volume and pressure of the water.

On the other hand, the power of a pressure washer it also determines the working time that the machine can perform per shift. Here is a reference guide to the performance time of a pressure washer, according to its power.

Cold Water Pressure Washers

  • Machine 2 Hp 1.5 hrs.
  • Machine 3 Hp 2-3 hrs.
  • Machine 5 Hp 4 hrs.
  • Machine 7.5 Hp 5 hrs.
  • Machine 9 Hp 10 hrs.

Hot Water Pressure Washers

  • Machine 7.5 Hp 4 hrs.
  • Machine 9 Hp 5 hrs.
  • Machine 10 Hp 8 hrs.

Accessories of a pressure washer

Generally the pressure washers They are accompanied by complementary elements, which facilitate cleaning work depending on the surface or object to be cleaned.

Pressure washer - accessories

Pressure washer – accessories

Nozzles: they are the main accessory with which the pressure washers. The nozzles according to their design, determine the type of water jet that will be used during the cleaning process. For example, a jet in a straight line exerts a greater impact on the surface to be cleaned, quickly removing dirt. This type of spray should only be applied to resistant surfaces.

On the other hand, the fan jet can be used in different amplitudes, depending on the size of the nozzle. This type of jet covers a larger surface area and is recommended for applying cleaners or detergents with low pressure.

Another type of jet is that of the milling effect, which is achieved with a rotating nozzle. This jet of water is the jet in a straight line, but turning in a circle as the pressurized water circulates. The result is excellent surface coverage with a high water impact.

Bristle brush: ideal for applying on surfaces with heavily impregnated dirt and large surfaces. It is generally used with a cleaner or detergent.

Skimmer: this accessory allows you to generate foam by combining water and some detergent. It is widely used for cleaning vehicles.

Extension: this accessory is used for cleaning in high places.

Portability of a pressure washer

An additional feature, but valuable in some cases, is the ease of transportation that a vehicle can offer. pressure washer.
There are models that have wheels to allow easy movement of the equipment, which would represent a valuable advantage in the event that the work to be carried out requires constant movement of the equipment.

Wheel pressure washer

Wheel pressure washer

Design aspects

Currently there are a wide variety of models of pressure washers In the market, the designs are of course diverse but there are some aspects that are worth considering.

Pistons: For professional and intensive use, it is highly recommended that the pump pistons be made of ceramic.

Hose connectors: For this type of connectors, metal or brass material is recommended. In a pressure washer plastic connectors do not provide the necessary fit to withstand water pressure.

Gun: the design of the gun must be ergonomic to facilitate its handling and control, while working with pressurized water. This is very important, since the power and flow of the water can cause discomfort in the hands and shoulders.

Handle or equipment grip: the equipment must have a handle that allows its grip, to facilitate its transfer from one place to another. Care must be taken that this handle complies with the minimum design, for a secure grip.

Hose holder and cable holder: some models of pressure washers They have a device that allows to place and hold in an orderly way, the hose and the cable (in the case of electrical equipment), for an easy handling of all the equipment. This helps prevent hose and cord tangle problems, and also makes it easier to store.

Pressure washer with hose holder

Pressure washer with hose holder

Care and maintenance of a pressure washer

Before using the machine, you must take into account the following indications:

  • Check and control the oil level in the pump.
  • Check and control the oil level in the engine.
  • Check power cord, high pressure hose, couplings, cleaning gun, and lance. If any of these parts are damaged, do not use the pressure washer.
  • Check the hose inlet filter.
  • Check equipment for water or fuel leaks. In the event of a leak, do not use the equipment.

When using the pressure washer:

  • Avoid running the pump dry, without water circulation.
  • Do not exceed the PSI determined for the equipment inlet water pressure.
  • Avoid the circulation of abrasive, acidic or alkaline liquids through the equipment pump.
  • You should clean the water inlet filter weekly, you can do it under running water or with compressed air. If it is extremely dirty, you can use a scale remover.
  • Monthly clean the nozzle with the pin for this purpose. In case of not achieving the necessary cleaning, contact specialized personnel.

Professional maintenance

After every 50 hours of use, you must take the equipment in so that the technical personnel inspect the hydraulic circuit of the pump, and verify that the pump is fixed.

Every 100 hours of use, the technical personnel should replace the oil pump, and check the suction and outlet valves, that the pump screws are tight, the valve adjustment and the safety devices.

Taking into account all these aspects and criteria, you will not have any problem when selecting the pressure washer correct. To continue adding information, in this article we mention the 10 things to know about this tool tool.

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