I was planning on building a soft wash side of my truck along with the pressure washer here in Arizona. This way I could wash stucco houses without damaging them. The Hotsy dealer I’m ordering my equipment from told me that the soft wash setup I was planning on (with the mixing manifold, 12v pump, bleach tank etc) was overkill and that I could do the same with a pressure washer by utilizing a “dual lance.” They say that I can use a high flow nozzle and downstream my chemicals and rinse with the 4gpm that the machine puts out and it’s the same as soft washing.
Does this make sense to do or am I saving money that I’ll eventually spend down the line?
So, your vendor is kinda an idiot, and fire the most part 12v/gas soft wash systems are a scam unless you are washing roofs or, wait to for it… Stucco. If I was you, is wash stucco with an Xjet, don’t worry about the soft wash system and find a new vendor
Downstreaming with your pressure washer typically gets you 10:1 bleach. I’ve read that folks get higher bleach ratios with a 4 GPM machine than an 8 GPM. I wouldn’t necessarily rely on getting better than 10:1 though.
The 12v pump will let you apply whatever ratio you want.
A 10:1 ratio is a standard house wash mix, and it will work on materials such as vinyl and hardy board. It is not strong enough for roofs or stone if you want to use bleach for stone. You could use onerestore or prosoco products for stone which could possibly be downstreamed at 10:1 (be extremely cautious on colored stone!)
The dual lance is not necessary for downstreaming. A low pressure nozzle for you lance is necessary. Get the M5DS.
I started without a 12v pump, and I very quickly added one to my setup. If you plan on being in the industry for a while, I would bet you end up getting one too. It comes in handy for a lot of different things. You could probably save some money on the mixing manifold by making one yourself. I would also recommend a 55+ gallon tank for bleach so you can get a whole drum of bleach. Then you can use your 12v pump for liquid transfer.
Lot’s of great threads here on building your own softwash system. If you plan on doing a lot of stucco or roofs, it’s definitely a useful tool to have. Xjet is great for the occasional stucco job, but won’t cut it for most roofs, and will get old really quick.
And William is right, your vendor is kind of an idiot.
Would you use the xjet if the whole house is stucco? I’d pull a second hose before x jetting a whole house. I certainly understand that budget and space are factors though, and the xjet will work just fine.
Lots of good info here. The vendor was also trying to sell me on this 75 gallon degreaser product that you mix 15:1 maximum. They claim you won’t need bleach or surfactant if you use this product. Pretty much goes against everything I’ve read on here.
Don’t wash a house with degreaser.
Yeah that set some red flags for me. I’m going to plan out my softwash build and get a decent pressure washer too.
I wouldn’t wash a stucco house period. But that’s just me. I’d use an Xjet over a 12v pump though
Why not? Every house in AZ is stucco and it would be leaving a lot of money untapped. Is stucco hard to softwash?
I haven’t lived in AZ since 1972. I started a washing business where I am because it’s easy washing. If I lived where there was stucco I wouldn’t start a washing business. But that’s just me
William is in North Carolina, they don’t have many stucco houses down there…great whitewater though. Stucco is very prevalent out west so it would make sense to get a 12v in your case.
Yeah that’s what I’m thinking. Just gotta build up a 12v pump system and get soft washing houses down to a science.
Guys, I’m with @Innocentbystander on this. You’re not paying attention. He lives outside of Phoenix in Gilbert AZ. Average rainfall is 9". I doubt he’s ever seen mildew. Zak you can easily wash every house you’ll see out there simply by setting up a ds system on your pressure washer. I wouldn’t worry about a 12v system right now unless you were doing something special where you were applying a lot of some special chemical like an acid. Anything else you can downstream or use a pump up for rust removal or something like that. I wash a fair amount of stucco houses here and it’s rare I need to pull out my 12v.
Zak I would pay attention to possible water restrictions out there. If there is, could seriously hurt your business.
This could happen over night and hit you like a sack of bricks. Think ahead and be prepared.
Thanks for the insight, Racer. Do you have any experience with downstreaming stucco with a dual wand? I’m nervous about DS because I think it would be painful to have to go to my truck and pull the DS hose out of the bucket every time I want to rinse. Am I missing something?
Also, they just stopped the agricultural water use in Pima county. I’m in Maricopa county and there’s no restrictions yet. I’ll have to roll with the punches on this one unfortunately.
Stucco is no big deal, just takes more chem and longer to rinse… that’s all.
You’re in AZ you don’t need a soft wash system… you can down stream and be fine…
No mold or mildew out there…
With that being said, make sure there’s a market for it, because sometimes ppl just don’t clean! The only time a house gets washed in many places is just before getting painted keep that in mind.
I’m in Socal and I don’t see a need for a soft wash system unless I start stepping in properties close to the beach with clay roofs… and offer roof washing…
Not that big a deal to walk to truck, we’ve pretty much all done it at some point that way, but most on here have a remote soap valve now or you could just do it with the nozzles on a jrod, what most the others do.
The problem is about 1/3 of your water comes from the Colorado river and Lake Mead which is at it’s lowest point in 26 years. This article was written at the end of April and it’s gotten worse since then. Arizona preparing for cutbacks on Colorado River water amid drought
Not trying to squash your dream, but this business takes awhile to build up your client base, etc. Just go into it with your eyes open because if it gets bad enough, they could shut you down overnite with a water restriction. Heck if it doesn’t get better in a couple of years, Las Vegas could cease to exist.
They’ve stopped agricultural water use which is the biggest consumer of water for us. They’re predicting that water restrictions won’t happen until at least 2025 and that’s if a lot of things go wrong.
What would your ideal mix be for a stucco house in the desert? The guys that are selling me the equipment are saying that I don’t need surficant or bleach. They say that they use this chemical that is soap and bleach on steroids and it has a very high concentration and lasts forever etc etc.
Ask them for a free sample. Test in an inconspicuous location on a good friend’s house. Sounds like either snakeoil or a dangerously powerful degreaser to me.
I would go light on the bleach, and choose a high quality surfactant like elemonator or maybe powersolve from hydrochem.