So, you are thinking about getting that driveway or your sidewalk nice and clean and you are wondering, 'What size pressure washer do I need to clean concrete?'. Maybe you aren't even sure which type. For instance, there are a number of electric models, but they may or may not have the pressure that you require. Well, you will be glad to know that in this article we are going to review a few pressure cleaners and following this we'll give you some tips for cleaning just in case this is your first time. So, are you ready? Let's proceed!
Gas or Electric
Gas is generally going to be the better bet when it comes to power. We'll review one or two electric models in this article just to give you an idea of what is out there but generally we are going to recommend a gas model. What is important is the pressure that you need to use.
What size pressure washer do I need?
When cleaning concrete a lot is actually going to depend on the pressure. So what is a good psi for a pressure washer? You want a target pressure of 2000-3000 PSI, although the closer tto 3000 the better. It should be noted that you should not play around with this. At these pressures you can strip off paint(and skin as well), so be sure to play it safe.
So, what can you tell me about the different power washers?
Well, we have reviewed a few washers and collected some data for you. We'll rate these starting from the lowest cost to the highest so that you can get a ittle idea of what the different models offer.
Concrete pressure washers
In all fairness, there are actually more things that you can wash besides the concrete, but we're going to use that heading for the purposes of this article. Now, here are those washers!
AR Annovi Reverberi AR390SS
PSI - 1500 Cost -$150.00
This model is a bit on the low end of the spectrum for cleaning. While you can clean concrete with it, don't expect miracles. We would recommend one of the higher end models so that you are getting at least 2000psi for your cleaning needs.
Simpson Cleaning MSH3125 MegaShot
PSI - 3200 Cost -$440.00
While this cleaner will set you back more you will be able to get a lot more work done. The 3200 psi is exactly what you need and if the budget is tight remember that you can also rent it out to your friends for a little summer cleaning.
Generac SpeedWash 7122
PSI - 3200 Cost -$330.00
The Generac is our choice for getting the most PSI for as little cash as possible. At 3200 psi you'll definitely be getting a clean driveway and the price is definitely worth it.
“We can't stress enough, safety first”
So I've acquired my washer... How do I effectively clean the driveway?
- First you will want to clear your surface of debris. A good sweeping should do the trick.
- Protect exterior surfaces With a little bit of sheeting and tape you can cover any windows or the garage door to make sure that you are only cleaning the concrete. Don't skip this step or you'll be sorry. It only takes a few minutes so if you are going to do the job make sure that you are doing it right.
- Be sure to read the manual. We know it is boring but safety is paramount. This is a high end piece of equipment and failure to read the manual can cost you later. Don't forget that at the PSI levels you are outputting it is quite easy to remove skin. Put your safety first and be sure to read the manual.
- Degrease the surface. Get yourself a bottle of spray degreaser. Spray at least 6 inches from the surface and be thorough, scrubbing deeply with a stiff wire brush. Scrub thoroughly to make sure that we are getting all of that yucky grease out of the surface before we begin.
- Attach the detergent wand - We're just about ready to clean. Get your detergent wand attached so we'll be ready to go.
- Attach your hoses - We're just about ready to go. Get your hose attached and we're ready for the next step.
- Load your detergent - Once you start the washer the detergent should be pulled directly into the washer.
- Put on your gloves and we are ready to soap up the driveway- Keep the sprayer a good 10 to 15 inches from the surface that you are spraying for best results. Let the detergent soak for at least 5 minutes before we begin the pressure wash.
- Time to pressure wash! Pressure wash by holding down the sprayer. For really tough stains you can hold the sprayer about 4 inches from the concrete but for standard cleaning 6 to 8 inches from the surface will suffice. Make sure to spray in overlapping strokes to ensure an even coverage. It's a slow process but you will really see the results.
- Seal the concrete - Once you are done cleaning a little waterproof sealer will preserve your work quite nicely. Apply it with a roller as you would with paint and allow at least 24 hours before parking your car on the newly sealed surface. Simply remove the tape and plastic tarp and you are ready to go. Congratulations on your newly cleaned driveway! ,
So we are all done?
Yup, that is all you need to do. Remember to read that manual and follow our steps and soon you're driveway will be the envy of the neighbors. We can't stress enough, safety first. These machines are not toys and you can seriously hurt yourself or others if you aren't careful. Read that manual and out your safety first and you'll be enjoying that clean driveway soon.