What to expect upgrading to a 5.5gpm machine?


Been running a 4200/4gpm machine for a year now. We are doing great! After this community we’re finishing in two weeks I want to start my proportioner build and upgrade to 2500/5.5gpm.

What appreciable difference can I expect on jobs from you guys that have upgraded also? Will there be an increase in distance I can reach with an X Jet? I assume rinsing time will go down.

I currently run my 4gpm from a 100 gallon buffer. The tank puts out 5.3GPM. Ive read that a belt driven machine will actually pull water from the source as opposed to a direct drive.

Is the 2000 dollar investment worth it for a one man operation that runs 4 days a week?

1 Like

I’m sure most everyone on here is going to jump in and say how much better it is. Check your flow on the one you have now. Most the belt driven 4gpm 4000psi machines flow at least 5 gpm with a softwash tip. Whatever you do get a belt driven machine or at the very least a gear drive. I personally wouldn’t trade my 4 /4000 psi for a 5.5 2500 unless it was just going to be used for housewashing. I will never own a pw machine that doesn’t have at least 3500 psi but then I do a lot of concrete.
If you look at the old time cleaning formula of flow times psi then a 4/4000 has 16,000 CU versus a 5.5/2500 has 13,750CU. In a head to head comparison last summer my 4/4000 shot further, washed just as fast and cleaned concrete faster than a 5.5/3000 machine. As far as how far it will shoot an xjet have no clue.

Me personally I would keep using what you’ve got if it’s working well for you, build you a nice 12v with proportioner system that will make you a ton of money and just wait till you can move up to at least a 8/3000 if not 8/3500 system on the pw.


Wow thanks for the advice. I’m excited to share my proportioner build. I’m leaning towards an air diaphragm set up at the moment. I’m glad I made the post, I had the order page up on my browser ready to submit but thought… let me just ask and see.


Air diaphragm with proportioner will work great for you too. You’ll make more with that than getting another little machine. With the right tips you can use it for hw too but talk to @florida_condo_cleani as far as capabilities of them.


There is a difference between the two but it’s not going to wow you. It’s only a little more water.


I am under the impression that the proportioner with the diaphragm pump is a great way to house wash?


Although you could use a Air diaphragm or 12V pump to wash a house it would be slower. Also the lack of pressure wouldn’t be great at knocking any nest or stubborn stains down. The only time i use my aodd for a house is on stucco and limestone, and even than i has to be a lot of area. I would rather not pull that hose and just use a pump up sprayer most of the time.

As for the 5.5 over the 4 gpm. There is a pretty big difference. I have both on my trailer and will always choose the 5.5. With the right nozzles the 5.5 will shoot further, it rinses way quicker. If you use the same xjet you currently are using, if its an unmodified one, then 5.5 will mist more. The 4gpm is really only effective at running a 16in surface cleaner but the 5.5 can run a 20in so less pass on concrete. As for the lower pressure on the 5.5, the only time ive needed more than 2500 psi was when i was running 400 ft of hose to a surface cleaner, so i used the 4/4k. I do a lot of community drives where there are 75+ driveways and the 5.5 is a better machine. Concrete doesn’t need that much pressure to be cleaned. Ive also tested my flow on both machines, i dont know how some are getting more than 4gpm open flow. And cleaning units mean nothing, its a sales gimmick to sell to homeowners.

All that being said if its just you washing than it would be better to hold out for an 8gpm.


4/4 and an 8/3500 on board together are great. Heres why I like a 4 backing up an 8:

  • situations that are better with less gpm like garage floors, wood resoration, poorly sloped driveways or toting water to a work area from a common area
  • poor water flow from onsite ie. well water or old city pipes
  • situations that require more psi than 3500. Rare but happens.
  • burn buffer water more slowly when running both/helper.
    In my opinion keep the 4 and add an 8/3500 for those reasons.

I made the mistake of getting a 5.5 gpm at 2500 psi and I did about 4 concrete jobs before I bought a 8 at 3000. I agree with the rest keep the 4 gpm until you can get a bigger better machine.


Really? That bad at 2500?


For me yes. I wash very dirty driveways and I was having to wash them twice. It was killing my time. I couldn’t imagine using it for the whole season.


I have a 4/4000 and added a 5.5/3500 hot skid this past winter. Honestly I was a little surprised at the subtle difference, smaller than I expected it would be.


Just my opinion…it looks like you are going in a more “softwash system” direction. What’s in your service area? Lots of stucco etc or traditional plastic and wood? Everything is a trade off. FYI I went from 4/4k to 8/3k udor. Big difference in concrete and rinse time. You have built a " mixing valve" system so keep on that and use the 4/4. Save the step and money. Buy once cry once


95% vinyl and shingle roofs. I don’t mind the x jet it’s made us a ton of money. I’d like to put together a little cart with a 10 gallon sealed container to wheel around that is more stable than a 5 gal bucket.

So there wouldn’t be enough pressure or flow from an air diaphragm proportioner to treat some homes?

1 Like

Gotta be vented


Yeah. I saw a picture of someone’s set up recently that was done up nice on sort of a modified hand truck. The only down side would be less of an ab workout.


You’re going to get a lot of back and forth here on this subject. I will lean towards agreeing with many here and keep the 4/4 and add an 8gpm later on.

I added a gear drive 5.5 and for me personally it’s a monster. With soft wash tips it flows 6.6gpm and my time has almost been cut in half on house washing. There is a difference in concrete cleaning. 2500psi won’t cut it on very dirty concrete unless you you’re pre-treating/post treating with a 12v or X-jet. My 4/4 cleaned the concrete much better but obviously went much slower. This set up works perfect for me since I don’t clean a lot of concrete and only wash 2-3 days a week.

If I was full time I would keep the 4/4 and add the 8/3500 and you’ll be much better off.


How come you went gear drive and not belt drive?


Because you can unbolt the direct drive pump…bolt on your gear drive pump…set your unloader…and go make some money. Gear drive and belt drive both run at cooler temps and both pull water

1 Like

Gear drive > belt drive imo. :+1: