Pre-built vs build yourself

I am trying to decide between building my own rig or buying a pre-built rig. My budget is 10k but naturally if I can get away with less I’ll be happy about that.

My main issue is that I am utterly overwhelmed with options and I don’t understand all of the lingo or even the exact process of things. To alleviate some of that, I am considering a pre-built rig that is more or less ready to roll.

However, I am a man, and I don’t want to let this whip me.

Could you give your opinions on that matter? I’m lost in buffer tanks, up streaming, batch mixing, hose reeling, soft washing, pressure washing, GPMs, PSI, and all of the other things that are swirling in my head.

Maybe a better question… If you got to start today with a 10k budget for your rig, what would you do?


Sounds like you dont need to do anything except for reading and learning.

But setting up your own trailer would be more economical.


Im thinking if you dont know the lingo you arent ready to take that step. Read and learn from the mistakes and success of others to avoid the mistakes yourself


Why would you upstream

3000psi/8gpm Honda with udor. $4200
Hannay reel. $300
250’ pressure hose $275
19 inch eagle wash surfacer $600
ST 2315 trigger gun $50
125 gallon leg tank $250
35 gallon chem tank $100
Nozzles $50
6 inch and 36 inch wand $35
Turbo Nozzle $100
$300 for whatever you forget/plumbing/extras etc
200 ft garden hose $150
Garden hose reel $100

That’s about $6500 and leaves you the rest for a trailer or to put toward a truck.
Each truck I put together costs roughly $11000 not counting the truck. That’s 2 machines per truck. This will let you clean anything except greasy concrete and roofs. Both of those are headaches anyway


Most of it I’ve been able to figure out. Upstream vs downstream, etc… SH… but there are new things I find all the time.

I guess I should have said that I’m afraid of making the wrong choice. Every time I think I have the lingo I find something new that I haven’t heard before. I’ve been researching this off and on for several months and I’d like to make a smart decision.

I’m a fishing guide and I’m familiar with running my own business. I just need a little help. This feels like buying my first charter boat LOL.

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bystander, are you saying that roofs aren’t worth the trouble? Do you turn that business away?

Gotta hit the books. It’s all here ready to learn. I wouldn’t spend a nickle until you have a better grasp on the basics.


Sharpe I’m with you there. Trouble with these forums is people always want you to sift through 990 lbs of stuff that you don’t need to get to the 10 you do instead of just answering a simple question about pre-built vs build your own.

Ask me about the fishing business. Anything you want to know. I’ll shoot you straight and save you a lot of heartache.

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And thanks for this awesome reply. Very detailed and helpful.

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Here is one way to think about it. If you build your own trailer you know how it was put together. It’s going to break no matter how much you take care of it. If you know it inside and out you will more likely be able to diagnose a problem on a job site and save yourself the embarrassment of postponing the job.
If you buy a pre made trailer your not getting anything you wanted. Your getting what someone else thought was good. Also you are over paying for the equipment.

Going through the process of building your own trailer is the way to go in my opinion.


in the 990# there is much more than 10 needed in it. You just dont realize yet.


I’m with you brother. I was at the point of building my own and found something in the 990 that said it’s a waste of time for your first rig… It seems like I can find every opinion imaginable and without some debate and discourse it’s just muck.

Send me an email


There is a lot. To me it was helpful to first decide what I was going to focus on. Residential exterior and associated flat work. I do roofs too, but only single story. I’m also picky about which ones I mess with. I dont particularly want to do roofs but sometimes I find the roof gets me en entire house wash. I dont do a roof unless they are willing to do roof down to slab. At the end of the day its a 800.00 job done in 4 hours or so. Im back to reading now because Im upgrading my set up from 4gpm to 5.5. I almost want to jump to 8 but 5.5 is an easy and cheap step that gives 37.5% more rinse water. I find the most time spent is rinsing. So far the only thing I feel Ive wasted money on was a water broom. The water feb pole is a close second but it allowed me to reach some dormers on a 3rd story making it valuable. Once!

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Cleaning roofs is a sham in my opinion. It is purely for aesthetics. I don’t do much anymore except apartment complexes, hoa’s and town homes. When I did roofs I always explained that it was merely for looks. There is good money in it and as long as you don’t mislead a customer it’s ok for some. Logistics hamper me. I can’t put a roof system on every truck, or want to.

There is a lot of knowledge here man… find a topic and read all you can. That will lead you to researchng something else and Any questions then address them. Think of it almost as sight casting for cobia vs trolling for Spanish blindly.

Where do u fish out of?


southeast GA

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