Am I Nutz?

First off thanks to all the members here willing to take the time to share your knowledge and experience! Been lurking for a month or so and trying to soak it all in. I need to bounce something off the group for feedback to see if my thinking is too far out in left field. I have done the average joe pressure wash jobs for neighbors etc (small time weekend stuff). I am really interested in ramping it up. However funds are limited. Is it insane of me to think it possible to use my 2400psi 2.4 gpm and Karcher surface cleaner to focus on small concrete jobs to build up enough seed money to buy a decent setup? I have another small venture where I got general liability and I spoke with the co and it covers pressure washing as long as it is residential only. I was thinking I would target market to townhome communities and other neighborhoods with shorter driveways. I understand the principles of mixing sh and would likely use a backpack sprayer to start with.
I’m in the metro Atlanta area if that helps.
Thoughts?

You’d be better off just doing house washing until you save up for a bigger machine. It’s still going to be slow but concrete will be really slow with a machine that small.

Another option is just to rent a machine for a week. Five jobs or so and you could buy a 5.5 gpm machine.

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You could definitely use your washer to do smaller jobs for friends, family, and neighbors. Once you have enough saved up, see about getting a 4 gpm or 5.5 belt driven washer. The 5.5 would need a buffer tank to run at it’s best but it’s the best of the 2. Everyone starts somewhere, just hustle.

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Thanks for the guidance. Have never softwashed but have watched and read quite a bit about it. With my setup what would you suggest I buy equip wise? Saw the x-jet m5 or maybe expandable pole? Many homes in my area are two story so not sure my backpack sprayer would be effective. Thanks!

Schedule 2 or more jobs on a day and rent a PW from HD. You’ll need to have your own accessories though.

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Thank you!

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Just get the proper nozzles and use your pressure washer to soft wash. You’d probably make more money renting a washer because you’ll be that much quicker and can do a handful of jobs a day. With a 2.4 gpm washer you’ll probably only be able to wash one or two a day. A 5.5 you could probably wash 5 a day. Maybe not quite that many since you’ll be unloading it and moving it around but I still think renting is the way to go. It’s brutal washing for a paycheck using a homeowner unit. It just takes forever. Guys on here have started out that way though.

Thanks. I will look into softwashing more and consider renting. I appreciate you sharing.

You might wanna re think that.

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Backpack sprayer leaks, you will have a nice burn down your rear end. I thought it was a good idea too until @Firefighter4hire warned me. Stick to carrying around a 5 gallon bucket with an x jet. If you decide to go that route, your 2.4 gpm machine would use a #7 M5 X-Jet.

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Why do you want to go into the pressure washing/ exterior cleaning business?

Didn’t even consider that…thanks!!

That is a good question. I am currently about 5 years away from being eligible for retirement with my current company. I would like to find something that I can continue after retirement from there. Pressure washing feels like a good fit as I can get a job done relatively quickly (I don’t like multi day drawn out projects), low cost of entry with decent return on investment, I could take a couple of weeks off with little impact to my customers (unlike lawn care) , and as odd as it sounds…it is very satisfying to me to clean a space.

How much$$ do you have to start with?

Somewhere between 300-500 to spend on top of the equipment I mentioned above.

Is there anyway you can bump up your initial investment? You will eventually want to get a trailer or do a truck build and keep your washer on the truck. It makes life so much easier. Keep that in mind as you start buying equipment. You know the saying, “buy once cry once”? Purchase a good quality washer and it’ll last you years. I also get satisfaction from pressure washing but I would absolutely hate it if I had to use a small homeowner machine. Go rent a 5.5 gpm just to try and you’ll know exactly what I’m talking about. Then imagine an 8 gpm that most guys end up getting. There’s really good money in pressure washing. You can make your money back in no time if you go about it the right way. Keep reading through old posts on here and take note of certain keywords to search. You’ll learn stuff you had no idea you needed to know.

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:wink:

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As far as budget…it is possible. How much were you thinking I would need to bump it? I am trying to be as smart as possible and think long term for as many of the purchases as I can.

As someone who’s been more or less taking my time with my business. I’d say and everyone is different but to get started a solid 2,500 to 3,000 would be a nice start. Go with a 5 or better gpm get extra injector, j-rod or whatever you prefer, SS fittings, buffer tank, at min 150’ pressure hose 200+ is ideal. If you are really tight a pump sprayer and water hose and soft brush can get you going in the house washing side. I made a pretty good lick with a pump sprayer. Best of luck to you. Insurance!!!

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Stick around the forum and just start reading and researching before doing anything. A lot of people come here thinking they’re going to pull a little homeowner pressure washer out of the back of their truck and wheel it around the house but soon realize it’s not ideal for a legitimate business. If you want to get back like a professional you need to be a professional. You can than demand higher prices I spent a little more than a year researching and found out at the beginning I was going to go about it the wrong way. I’m glad I didn’t because I made enough my first season where I was able to quit a good paying full time job. I know you’re getting ready to retire and don’t want to work all day long but you might as well get paid as much as you can for that half a day. You could go from washing one house in the morning with your homeowner unit to washing 3 in a morning with good equipment. The sky is the limit on how much you want to make.

You can get a 5.5 gpm for around $1500. If you don’t plan on doing a trailer or truck build you might want to stick to a 4 gpm. Search “trailer build” using the search bar on the upper right of the page by your avatar so you can see what they entail.

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