Hot vs cold water machines

Hi everyone,
I am adding pressure washing to my window washing business. I have a couple questions first is a machine that uses cold water ok or do I need one that uses hot water. I also read from someone that if you use hot water you don’t need to use soap what does everyone think about that.
I saw a machine at Lowes that was a Husqbarna it has 3300 PSI and 3.2 GPM is this machine powerful enough for starting out.
Any tips for power washing or the equipment would be great!!! :slight_smile:

If you are sticking to just powerwashing houses (mostly vinyl) a coldwater unit is sufficient. Try to aim for at least a 4gpm unit

The homes around here are mostly stucco is the cold water ok for that as well. Any suggestions where to buy a good pressure washer. I’m willing to buy a good one but don’t want to spend a fortune.

If you are just starting out get at least a 4 gpm machine preferably with a belt drive. carries a full line of pressure washers. All you need is cold water if you are just doing residential work.

Buy as many gpm as you can (but at least 4) in a good quality, preferably belt-driven machine. If you can only afford direct drive, don’t despair. It will make you a lot of money before the pump dies.

If you decide you need hot water later you can add a hot box.

[SIZE=1][COLOR=#000000][FONT=Arial]I used a cold water machine for eight years until I got a hot water unit just over a year ago. So yes, a cold water machine will get you through a lot of work. I know I am repeating what others have said, but I agree that you should go with at least 4 gpm. High psi will be a lot less beneficial to you than having one with higher gpm. [/FONT][/COLOR][/SIZE]

[SIZE=3][COLOR=#000000][FONT=Arial][SIZE=1]As far as [SIZE=1]not needing so[/SIZE]ap with a hot water machine it is not true. Hot water is an emulsifier and is better a breaking down dirt than cold water, but soap is still needed. If you are cleaning homes, you still need your house wash mix. If you are cleaning concrete, having the right cleaners for mold/mildew, grease and oil, or red mud stains will yield faster and better results than hot water alone.[/SIZE][/FONT][/COLOR][/SIZE]

[SIZE=1][COLOR=#000000][FONT=Arial]Another benefit to being able to heat your water is soaps and even bleach become practically ineffective in water temperatures around 50 degrees. Being able to apply your solutions in warm water (not necessarily hot water) will help keep your cleaning solulutions at optimum strength so you can greatly extend your cleaning season. I cleaned two houses a few years ago while standing in 6" of snow. [/FONT][/COLOR][/SIZE]

[SIZE=1][COLOR=#000000][FONT=Arial]Like Thad said, you can start out with a cold water unit and add a hot box later on if a hot water skid is not in the budget. No matter what you go with, before you buy a machine from a home center that sells mostly homeowner grade equipment, I would give Powerwash. com, Bob at PressureTek, and Russ at Southside Equipment a call and talk to them about what you are wanting and see what they can do to help you.[/FONT][/COLOR][/SIZE]

Thanks that was helpful.

Having hot water can open more doors and add more revenue streams. It’s also very marketable.

Since you’re just starting out a 4 gpm washer may be all you need right now. If you’re committed to adding and keeping PW’ing to your business then I would suggest a 5-8 gpm hot water set-up. I’m seeing a few in craigslist for around $5000.

I agree with Guy,Lynn and Thad. For years I had cold water and Guy kept telling me about switching over for a cpl years now. Finally I switched over last year and I’ll never NOT have a Hot water machine. If you have the budget for one hit
and do a search for your local areas. You might find a complete trailer set up…

I would recommend going with that model, I use it at the Coral Springs pressure cleaning company that I work for. Hot water works very well and so does soft washing if you offer it.

If you want to see some of the work done with hot water visit this sites gallery.

I have worked with them and they provide great work at an affordable price. The provide you with a quote and work with you on the price.

Agree with all the above. I have been using 4gpm 4000 so far and that would be the minimum gpm I’d suggest. I have to say when I (finally) get in a position to upgrade my priority will be GPM then heat will have to come 2nd,although I know once I go to hot I probably won’t understand how I survived without it!

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Hot water is a must if doing commercial work. As soon as you start popping a few pieces of black gum on Commercial concrete and you look ahead of you have another 100’ to go your going to wish you had a Hot water Powerwasher right then and there.

But like everyone says above at the very least 4gpm cold water Powerwasher is a good way to start.

One thing I didn’t realize until I was sold one, it that the belt-drive is able to pull from a tank source and that the direct drive can only be fed by a pressurized hose source. I don’t know if this is true, but it might be something to consider when picking your unit out.

Also, I’ve been using the same direct-drive pump for 2 years now with no issues. :rolleyes: knock on wood

Can someone confirm that? I’m very interested to know before I start planning my new setup! I thought direct drive would be ok once you work out what head of water you need in your tank to feed the pump properly, and just keep that amount as your ‘0’ level…?

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We’ve had direct drives in the past that pulled from a tank without issue…

I was sold… :frowning:

When I had my direct drive it pulled from a tank alright…won’t pull very well up hill though…

I loved switching to gear drive.

Gear drives are good space savers and not to harsh on a pump. Belt drives in my experiences are the best all around way to go. If you plan on putting a ton of hours on your Powerwasher Direct drive can wreck havoc on your pump. The reason for that is the pump will be turning the same speed as the engine RPM which is about 3600 revolutions per minute. Pumps with belt drives are turning only around 1460 or so rpm which will add many hours of life to your pump.

I had 1 direct drive Powerwasher in 17+yrs Powerwashing and the pump lasted 2 weeks before it broke. I returned that under warranty and never purchased another Direct drive again. Time lost = money lost.

I had a direct drive hooked to my water tank. Ill see if i can find the older pictures. The secret to. I had 2 inch pipe my outlet pipe heading toward my machine. Then i had maybe 1 foot off water hose connecting to my machine. It was almost like a force feed. Worked well for 3 years…

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Yeah, I was under the impression the best way to do it was keep the pipe the same bore as the tank outlet for as much of the distance as possible to the machine. I.e all the way up to your main pre-pump filter and then from the filter right into the machine inlet…?

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