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Buyers Guide & Information

Best Electric Pressure Washers Reviewed

If you’re looking for a low maintenance machine that is quiet, we have rated the top models on the market.

by

Buyers Guide & Information

Best Electric Pressure Washers Reviewed

If you’re looking for a low maintenance machine that is quiet, we have rated the top models on the market.

by JohnL

by JohnL

Power washing is one of the most effective cleaning methods there is. A high-quality pressure washer is capable of cleaning outdoor patios, decks, driveways, sidewalks, and cars, but did you know that certain pressure washers are suitable for indoor use? This isn’t the case for gas-operated machines, but the best electric pressure washers are perfect for both indoor and outdoor cleaning tasks.

There’s a lot involved in choosing the right electric pressure washer for your specific cleaning needs. So many people assume it's all about a machine's PSI, but there's more to it than just power. This guide on the best electric pressure washers offers everything there is to know about selecting a high-quality pressure washer, plus the 9 best electric models on the market.

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Model

Pressure

Flow Rate

Check Price

Sun Joe SPX3000 2030 Max PSI 1.76 GPM 14.5-Amp...

Sun Joe SPX3000

2030 PSI

1.76 GPM

Karcher K5 Premium Electric Power Pressure Washer,...

Karcher K5 Premium

2000 PSI

1.4 GPM

Powerhouse International - Electric High Power-...

Powerhouse International Platinum

3000 PSI

2.2 GPM

Sun Joe SPX3500 2300 Max Psi 1.48 Gpm Brushless...

Sun Joe SPX3500

2300 PSI

1.48 GPM

Briggs & Stratton S1800 1800 MAX PSI at 1.1 GPM...

Briggs & Stratton 20680

1800 PSI

1.2 GPM

Greenworks 1500 PSI 13 Amp 1.2 GPM Pressure Washer...

Greenworks GPW1501

1500 PSI

1.2 GPM

Stanley SHP2150 Electric Pressure Washer with...

Stanley SHP2150

2150 PSI

1.4 GPM

AR Annovi Reverberi Blue Clean, AR383 1,900 PSI...

AR Blue Clean AR383

1900 PSI

1.5 GPM

Shark CB-353007H 3,000 PSI 3.5 GPM 208 Volt...

Shark CB-353007H

3000 PSI

3.5 GPM

How Do Electric Pressure Washers Work?

Just as the name pressure washer suggests, this type of machine washes surfaces with the help of pressurized water. Unlike washing with regular soap and water, the addition of pressure makes cleaning a breeze. So how exactly does it all work? Let’s start by covering the main parts of a pressure washer.

The main components of the machine include a water inlet, an electric motor, a water pump, a high-pressure hose, and a cleaning attachment. The water inlet is the hose that connects the pressure washer to your home's main water supply. Once connected, you'll turn the machine on, and the electric motor will begin powering the water pump.

The pump is often thought of as the heart of the machine. Just as the human heart pumps blood throughout the body, a pressure washer pump pumps water throughout the machine. The pump takes water from the inlet faucet and pumps it to the high-pressure hose. Water then goes through the hose and is discharged at high pressure from the cleaning attachment, or nozzle.


Advantages of Owning an Electric Pressure Washer

There’s no doubt about the fact that a pressure washer is the ultimate cleaning tool. HomeAdvisor says that "medium and heavy-duty pressure washers, running at up to 100 times the pressure of a garden hose, are designed to clean concrete, stubborn stains, and grease… High capacity pressure washers also have adjustable settings for more sensitive jobs and are a great tool for giving your automobile a quick cleaning." 

The main question when shopping for a pressure washer is whether the best pressure washer gas or electric. Although gas-powered machines do have certain advantages, so does an electric pressure washer. The main benefit of going electric is the convenience factor. You no longer have to worry about refilling the tank with fuel; all you have to do to get your machine started is plug it into a compatible power outlet.


Buying a High-Quality Electric Pressure Washer

Pressure & Cleaning Power

As we mentioned before, pressure shouldn't be the only consideration, but it is a big one. Every electric pressure washer comes with a different pressure rating, which is measured in pounds per square inch (or PSI). The higher the PSI, the higher the pressure and the greater pressure leads to more cleaning power. Most electric models fall in the range of 1600 to 3000 PSI.

You should also think about water consumption, which is measured in gallons per minute (or GPM). Electric pressure washers consume less water on average than gas-powered machines. Try to find the GPM sweet spot - consuming too much water can be costly (and it’s bad for the environment), but consuming too little can weaken the overall cleaning power. If possible, try to find a GPM between 1.2 and 2.4.

Dimensions & Weight

A major perk of choosing an electric machine is better portability. This type of pressure washer tends to smaller and lighter, which helps with storage and mobility. If portability is your main concern, you’ll want to choose a small electric pressure washer that comes with mobility features, like wheels and handles. The lighter the weight and smaller the dimensions, the easier the pressure washer will be to handle.

Noise Level

It doesn't matter if you live in a tight-knit neighborhood or a secluded country home, selecting a relatively quiet pressure washer is always a plus. With a quiet machine, you won't disturb your neighbors, your family, or the peaceful surroundings of your home. A pressure washers noise level is measured in decibels, or dB. The higher the dB, the louder the noise.

It’s not likely that you’ll find a whisper-quiet machine, but you should be able to find one that has a noise level of 78 dBA.

When comparing different models, Consumer Reports said that "all the gas pressure washers produced at least 85 decibels (dBA)...Electric models averaged 78 dBA when running and are silent with their triggers released since doing so stops the motor."

Washing Surface/Requirements

Try not to focus solely on a pressure washer's specifications, but also focus on your specific requirements, specifically in terms of washing surface. Will you be washing wood, concrete, metal, or all of the above? The majority of electric pressure washers are compatible with a variety of surface types. However, it's still a good idea to make sure a machine is suitable for washing your deck's wood or your car's exterior.

Cord & Hose Length

Some homeowners feel that using a pressure washer with a cord is restricting, but the good news is it doesn’t have to be. All you have to do is choose a pressure washer that comes with an extended cord and hose. The longer the cord, the further you can move away from the power source. The other option is to purchase a high-quality extension cord.

All-electric pressure washers vary in terms of hose length. A longer hose could be the determining factor in whether or not you can clean every inch of your car without having to reposition the entire machine. Most models come with 25-ft hoses, but some manufacturers go above and beyond with 50-ft hoses.

Adjustable Power Management

Being able to adjust the pressure level of the water stream is an amazing feature. Not all surfaces handle high-pressure as well as others, and you might even end up damaging paint coating if you aren’t careful. But with adjustable power management, you never have to worry about this. This feature allows you to start the pressure on low before building up to a more powerful stream.

Safety

A pressure washer is not something to take lightly. No matter how much fun you have pressure washing the patio, it’s important to remember that this is not a toy. 

Consumer Reports sent out a pressure washer safety alert saying that “an estimated 6,057 people in 2014 alone went to an emergency room with injuries related to pressure washer use.”

As long as you use your machine correctly and you look for one that comes with all the necessary safety features, you shouldn't have to worry. Some must-have pressure washer safety features include automatic shut-down when the machine after a period of inactivity and color-coded nozzles, so you know exactly the degree you'll be spraying with.

Extra Features & Accessories

On-board storage isn’t a necessity, but it’s a huge perk. This feature makes it easy to organize your high-pressure hose, nozzle attachments, and extra accessories within the pressure washer itself. Another helpful add-on to look for is additional nozzle attachments. A lot of people don't realize that different spray nozzles should be used for different cleaning tasks, so try to find a model that comes with several nozzles included.

Price & Warranty

It’s possible to find a cheap electric pressure washer, but try not to be too frugal with your purchase. There’s no need to spend thousands on an industrial machine unless you’re looking for extreme heavy-duty cleaning, but don’t skimp out on the essential safety features. And whatever you do, find a product that comes with a warranty of at least one year, ideally two.


9 Best Electric Pressure Washers Reviewed

1. Sun Joe SPX3000

Our Top Pick!

Pressure

2030 PSI

Flow Rate

1.76 GPM

Hose Length

20 ft

Weight

31 lbs

Cleaning Power

3,573 CU (cleaning units)

Warranty

2 years

If you’ve ever shopped around for a high-quality snow blower, you’ve probably heard of the Snow Joe manufacturer. This company has a specific sector called Sun Joe that is dedicated to offering high-quality pressure washers, so if you’re a fan of Snow Joe, you’ll love what Sun Joe has to offer. When deciding on what is the best electric pressure washer for you, the top pick is the SPX3000 Sun Joe electric pressure washer.

This is a portable yet powerful 2030 PSI electric pressure washer that can tackle a variety of cleaning tasks, including home and building exteriors, RVs, cars, boats, decks, patios, driveways, outdoor furniture, and more. It uses a relatively small amount of water - just 1.76 gallons per minute - and has a max water inlet temperature of 104 degrees Fahrenheit.

One thing we love about the Sun Joe electric pressure washer is its high-capacity detergent tank. It holds up to 0.9 liters of detergent and can hold a variety of different detergent types for all of your cleaning needs. It comes with all the necessary safety features, including automatic shut-off for periods of inactivity. This helps to conserve water, prolong pump life, and promote safety.

This is the #1 best-selling pressure washer in the US, especially for homeowners who are looking for a budget-friendly cleaning solution. Another thing we love is that "this pressure washer lets you tailor the pressure output of the spray to your cleaning need with Sun Joe's five Quick-Connect spray nozzles (0º, 15º, 25º, 40º and soap)." The only thing that could use some improvement is the hose length, which extends only 20 feet, but the long 35' cord length makes up for this.

Pros

  • High cleaning power
  • Portable & lightweight
  • Large detergent tank
  • 5 nozzles included
  • Automatic shut-off

Cons

  • Short hose length
  • Long assembly time

2. Karcher K5 Premium

Best 2000 PSI Electric Pressure Washer

Pressure

2000 PSI

Flow Rate

1.4 GPM

Hose Length

25 ft

Weight

28.7 lbs

Cleaning Power

2800 CU (Cleaning Units)

Warranty

2 years

The Karcher K5 Premium is the best rated electric pressure washer that comes with top-of-the-range performance features and 2000 PSI operation. According to hundreds of electric cold water pressure washer reviews, this is the ultimate top-of-the-line model that is capable of handling even the toughest cleaning jobs. The electric pressure washer has a 2,000 PSI pressure rating and a 1.4 GPM flow rate, which adds up to a cleaning power of 2,800 cleaning units.

Karcher says that "it features a water-cooled induction motor to extend the life of the pressure washer and also to reduce noise… the pressure can be adjusted by simply twisting the VPS wand - for effective and surface-friendly cleaning."

Like most electric pressure washers, it has a maximum water inlet temperature of 104 degrees, so, unfortunately, it's not capable of handling hot water.  We love that the high-pressure hose extends 25 feet - 5 feet longer than the Sun Joe SPX3000.

The variable power spray wand is easily adjustable, allowing you to adjust the water pressure based on the surface you're cleaning. This is a powerful pressure washer, so it's suggested that you start on the lowest pressure setting and work your way up for more delicate surfaces (like cars and house siding).

Even with such powerful operation, the K5 Premium is a portable machine that's easy to handle. It weighs less than 30 pounds and comes with a sturdy carrying handle. The DirtBlaster Turbo spray wand is a signature Karcher feature, and it does exactly as the name suggests: blasts dirt with a heavy-duty spray. The main downside of any top of the range product is the price, but we say that the high cost is worth every penny - especially for those looking for a 2000 PSI electric pressure washer powerhouse.

Pros

  • Quicker cleaning
  • DirtBlaster spray wand
  • Increased motor life
  • Maintenance-free pump
  • Lightweight design

Cons

  • High cost
  • Challenging assembly

3. Powerhouse International Platinum

Best 3000 PSI Electric Pressure Washer

Pressure

3000 PSI

Flow Rate

2.2 GPM

Hose Length

30 ft

Weight

32 lbs

Cleaning Power

6600 CU (Cleaning Units)

Warranty

1 year

It’s not every day that we come across an electric pressure washer for home use with 3000 PSI operation; in most cases, only gas-powered machines have PSI ratings that go that high. But there's finally an electrically-powered pressure washer that can compete with the power of a gas machine. The best 3000 PSI electric pressure washer is, without a doubt, the Powerhouse International Platinum. 

This 3000-PSI machine has a flow rate of 2.2 GPM, which is a bit high for some people's liking, but on the plus side, the high flow rate contributes to stronger cleaning power. It's powerful, but that doesn't mean your ears need to suffer. The motor runs quietly, and it stops automatically as soon as the spray gun trigger is released. This extends the motor's life, plus saves on water.

The Powerhouse company made some significant upgrades to the new and improved Platinum model. Some of these upgrades include a more robust design, more portability with sturdy caster wheels, a flexible 30-foot hose, better power cord storage, and a stronger trigger gun and lance. The new model also comes with a telescoping handle for better maneuverability.

Using the Powerhouse pressure washer is simple. There's an attachable soap/detergent bottle that adjusts the amount of soap dispensed simply by twisting. There are just a few downsides of choosing the Powerhouse, and the first is the short 1-year warranty period. This isn’t so bad, but typically the best electric pressure washers come with a 2-year warranty. The second is that there’s no built-in detergent tank (but you will receive an attachable soap bottle that serves the same purpose).

Pros

  • Powerful
  • Long hose & power cord
  • Quick connect tips
  • Cleaning accessories included
  • Telescoping handle & casters

Cons

  • Short warranty
  • No built-in detergent tank

4. Sun Joe SPX3500

Best Rated Model

Pressure

2300 PSI

Flow Rate

1.48 GPM

Hose Length

20 ft

Weight

46.5 lbs

Cleaning Power

3404 CU (Cleaning Units)

Warranty

2 years

We've got another top-rated Sun Joe model to talk about, but this one is slightly different than the SPX3000. The Sun Joe SPX3500 is somewhat more powerful than the last one with a PSI of 2300 instead of 2030. But even with higher pressure, the SPX3500 has a lower flow rate of 1.48 GPM. You’re probably thinking that the lower flow means less cleaning power, but this electric pressure washer isn’t lacking in any way when it comes to cleaning performance.

The SPX3500 comes with a powerful 13-amp/2000W brushless induction motor that works to clean dirt, debris, tar, mud, and even grease and caked-on grime.  Similar to the last Sun Joe, this one comes with a 20-foot high-pressure hose, a 35-foot extension cord, and a 34-inch spray wand. All of this is easy to handle with the sturdy carrying handle and the set of 2 caster wheels. This pressure washer is often called the “Grime Fighter” - go ahead and take a guess as to why.

Sun Joe says that you’ll be able to “tackle the toughest cleaning tasks with the SPX3500 Electric Pressure Washer from Sun Joe. From homes, buildings, RVs, cars, trucks, to boats, decks, driveways, patios and more, this dirt-decimating dynamo makes quick work of a variety of outdoor chores.”

The only negative feedback for the Sun Joe has to do with its plastic connections. Sure, it's a sturdy machine, but it could be even more durable if it wasn't constructed with plastic parts and pieces where the water hoses are connected. We suggest that Sun Joe replace all this plastic with brass fittings, and maybe in the future, they'll take this suggestion to heart.

Pros

  • Automatic shut-off feature
  • Powerful 13-amp motor
  • Onboard detergent tank
  • “The Grime Fighter”
  • Easy-glide wheels

Cons

  • Short hose length
  • Plastic connections

5. Briggs & Stratton 20680

Best Electric Pressure Washer
for Home Use

Pressure

1800 PSI

Flow Rate

1.2 GPM

Hose Length

20 ft

Weight

31.5 lbs

Cleaning Power

2160 CU (Cleaning Units)

Warranty

1 year

For cleaning tasks that require light and medium-duty water pressure, no model compares to the 20680 Briggs and Stratton electric pressure washer. This model has a lower PSI and GPM than the others on our list, but it is still perfectly capable of getting the job done. Some homeowners prefer the lighter pressure since it means there’s not as much risk of damaging the surface of the house, car, or patio furniture. 

Briggs and Stratton is a member of the Pressure Washers Manufacturers' Association, which means they offer the performance you can trust. "As a member of the PWMA, Briggs & Stratton tests every power washer it designs through a third-party testing program to validate our claims of performance," says the company.

This 1800 PSI electric pressure washer has a flow rate of 1.2 GPM and can clean 40% faster with the help of the specialized Turbo nozzle. Another feature we love is the integrated detergent tank, which allows homeowners to up their cleaning potential in seconds by easily adding soap to the built-in tank. But most importantly, the pressure washer is constructed with durability in mind; it comes with a welded steel frame and long-lasting motor.

If you’re looking for a heavy-duty pressure washer to tackle big cleaning tasks, the B&S machine isn’t your best bet. For bigger jobs, you’ll want to go with a product that comes with a higher PSI, like the Sun Joe or Powerhouse. If you’ve got your heart set on this machine but wouldn’t mind having more power, there is the option to purchase a Briggs and Stratton electric washer with 2000 PSI instead of 1800.

Pros

  • Integrated detergent tank
  • Welded steel frame
  • Long-lasting universal motor
  • Fast-cleaning with Turbo nozzle
  • PWMA certified

Cons

  • Short warranty
  • Not suited for bigger jobs

6. Greenworks GPW1501

Best Small/Portable Option

Pressure

1500 PSI

Flow Rate

1.2 GPM

Hose Length

20 ft

Weight

17 lbs

Cleaning Power

1800 CU (Cleaning Units)

Warranty

1 year

The Greenworks electric pressure washer company specializes in creating powerful tools that aren't harmful to the environment. Their products are eco-friendly, and the GPW1501 is no exception. This Geenworks 1500 PSI electric pressure washer has a low flow rate of just 1.2 GPM, but just because you'll be consuming less water doesn't mean you can't get the job done.

Here’s a quick rundown of what the Greenworks company is all about: “Greenworks offers the right tool for every job. Utilizing best-in-class technology, Greenworks tools deliver the power and performance of comparable gas-powered tools without the mess, noxious fumes, stamina-reducing vibration and noise associated with gas products.”

Although the GPW1501 isn’t as powerful as a heavy-duty gas-powered washer, it works perfectly for light to medium-duty cleaning tasks. According to Greenworks 1500 PSI electric pressure washer reviews, this small machine will blast through grime and dirt to revitalize a variety of surfaces around your home. It's the ideal portable tool for cleaning lawn furniture, patios, decks, and cars, and it can be used both vertically and horizontally for more stability while cleaning. So what makes it our top pick for the best portable electric pressure washer?

That would be a lightweight, compact design. The machine doesn't even need wheels or the cart-design, because it's that lightweight. The 1500-PSI model weighs just 17 pounds, which is a fraction of the typical 35 to 40-pound electric pressure washer. It’s not as powerful as some of the other models, but you have the option to increase the PSI rating to 1600, 1700, 1800, or 1950 PSI.

Pros

  • Compact & lightweight
  • Great value for the cost
  • Eco-friendly model
  • Perfect for light-duty cleaning
  • Easy assembly

Cons

  • Less powerful
  • No water supply tank

7. Stanley SHP2150

Best Electric Pressure Washer
for Foam Cannon

Pressure

2150 PSI

Flow Rate

1.4 GPM

Hose Length

25 ft

Weight

26 lbs

Cleaning Power

3010 CU (Cleaning Units)

Warranty

2 years

A foam cannon is a pressure washer attachment that delivers a thick, soapy mixture that is perfect for washing cars. If you plan to wash cars with an electric pressure washer foam cannon attachment, you'll love what the SHP2150 Stanley electric pressure washer has to offer. It comes with a specially-designed detergent bottle that doubles as high-pressure foamer.

Not only does the Stanley come with the best foam cannon for electric pressure washer car cleaning, but it also features powerful 2150 PSI cleaning force that can clean decks, siding, cement, pavement, outdoor furniture, and more. The machine is built with leakproof 22mm connections and a 25-foot high-pressure hose that comes with 4 quick-connect nozzles.

Here’s what the Stanley Tools corporation has to say about their most powerful electric pressure washer: "Cleaning power comes from a proven universal motor and tri-axial pressure washer pump delivering 2,150 PSI of adjustable cleaning power that you can use to quickly blast away dirt, mold, moss, mildew, and grime to reveal a fresh clean look."

There is only one complaint about the SHP2150; from time to time, the machine experiences some fluctuations in pressure. So don’t be surprised if the pressure washer drops from full to normal pressure every once in a while - this is pretty normal. Overall, you can’t go wrong with any pressure washer that is branded with the Stanley name.

Pros

  • Foam cannon attachment
  • Durable construction
  • Perfect for home use
  • Reputable Stanly name
  • Portable design

Cons

  • Pressure fluctuations

8. AR Blue Clean AR383

Best Electric Pressure Washer for Cars

Pressure

1900 PSI

Flow Rate

1.5 GPM

Hose Length

20 ft

Weight

12.95 lbs

Cleaning Power

2850 CU (Cleaning Units)

Warranty

1 year

Although the Stanley SHP2150 comes with a handy foam cannon for washing cars, the all-time best electric pressure washer for cars is the AR Blue Clean AR383. The main reason for this is that it features the ideal PSI for washing cars, so you won’t ever have to worry about damaging your vehicle’s exterior paint.

A source called YourMechanic says that you should “choose a pressure washer with a setting of 1200 – 1900 PSI,” such as the 1900 PSI AR383 electric pressure washer for cars.

Yet another reason that this is the perfect solution for washing cars is its extreme portability. It is mounted on a set of wheels and is lightweight and compact, perfect for washing every nook and cranny of your vehicle. Because of the relatively low PSI, you can use this pressure washer on fragile surfaces - even on your home’s windows.

The AR383 has one of the most straightforward assembly processes, so you won't have to spend more than a few minutes putting it all together. These are the easy-to-follow steps for assembling your new pressure washer: "Pull it out of the box, insert the hose reel and attach the handle. Connect the high-pressure hose and garden hose. Plug the GFCI to a 3 prong outlet with a ground. Pull the trigger to start cleaning."

Another perk of choosing the AR383 is that this is an environmentally-friendly choice. It uses 80% less water with 40% more power than a standard garden hose, all while quickly blasting away dirt, mold, moss, and grime. The one thing we would like to see is a foam cannon attachment for washing cars with soapy foam, but unfortunately, the AR383 doesn't come with a foam cannon (you can purchase one separately).

Pros

  • Lightweight
  • Easy to assemble
  • Eco-friendly pressure washing
  • Great customer service
  • Ideal for delicate surfaces

Cons

  • Not for heavy-duty cleaning
  • No foam cannon included

9. Shark CB-353007H

Best Commercial Model

Pressure

3000 PSI

Flow Rate

3.5 GPM

Hose Length

25 ft

Weight

266 lbs

Cleaning Power

10500 CU (Cleaning Units)

Warranty

Pump: 7 years, Parts: 1 year

The most powerful electric pressure washer is the Shark CB-353007H. This is a commercial electric pressure washer that looks nothing like the residential pressure washers we’ve talked about so far. Instead of the typical cart and wheel design, this one comes with a fully-enclosed boxlike design, sort of resembling a high-quality stereo speaker.

As the best professional electric pressure washer, you can count on this machine to deliver nothing short of sheer power. Shark is a member of the Karcher Group, which means the CB-353007H comes with the same high-quality design, durable components, and reliable motor as all Karcher pressure washers.

“Shark’s dominating reputation for ruggedness and safety in the rental market is recognized by a broad array of cleaning professionals and commercial contractors,” says the company.

Unlike any of the other models on this list of best electric pressure washer reviews, the Shark functions as an electric hot water pressure washer. The other products we've covered are only compatible with water up to 104 degrees Fahrenheit, but not the Shark. This machine can handle water up to 180 degrees. Add that to the increased 3000 PSI rating, and you're looking at a pressure washer that can handle just about anything.

The main downside of this model is the insanely high price tag. The high cost is the main thing preventing homeowners from purchasing this 3000 PSI electric pressure washer for cleaning tasks around the house. This is mainly used as an industrial electric pressure washer in commercial settings, like office buildings, parking lots, and other industrial environments.

Pros

  • Highest cleaning power
  • Long pump warranty
  • Hot water compatibility
  • Karcher reliability
  • Many safety features

Cons

  • High cost
  • High water consumption

Comparing Electric vs. Gas Pressure Washers

When comparing an electric vs. gas pressure washer, electric has the upper hand in many ways. They're more convenient since they don't require you to fill up on fuel. Just plug in, and you're ready to start cleaning. The absence of gasoline isn't just more convenient, but it's also much safer. There are a lot of safety hazards for gas, but you won’t need to worry about these with an electric pressure washer.

Electric washers are smaller and lighter, which makes them easier to store and more comfortable to handle. Depending on the cleaning surface, they can be used indoors, which is NEVER the case with a gas-powered device of any kind. While gas machines operate at 85 dB, electric pressure washers are much quieter, with an average 78 dB noise level. To top it all off, you'll end up saving money by choosing electric.

There is just one advantage that gasoline has over electrical operation, and that is power. Gas pressure washers are capable of more powerful pressure washing, and they often come with a higher PSI. This is a significant factor for some people when deciding between a gas or electric pressure washer, especially if you're looking for a heavy-duty cleaning solution.


How to Setup and Use an Electric Pressure Washer

The steps for setting up an electric pressure washer depends on the specific model you’ve purchased. In most cases, the machine will be close to fully assembled out of the box, so you’ll just have to follow a few assembly instructions from the manufacturer. Once assembled, the next step is to connect the pressure washer to an appropriate water supply.

Connecting the Water Supply

To connect to the water supply, you can use your ordinary garden hose. If it's not connected already, connect the garden hose to the water supply on the exterior of your home. Then, turn it on and let the water run for about 30 seconds to clear out any debris/dirt that might be lodged in the hose. Turn the water back off and connect the end of the garden hose to the pressure washer’s water inlet.

Every pressure washer comes with a high-pressure hose. This hose is better capable of handling high pressure, so you can’t just use any old garden hose. Always use the high-pressure hose that is included with the machine. Take one end of the high-pressure hose and screw it onto the machine's pump outlet, and on the opposite end, screw on the spray gun attachment. 

Plugging Into a Power Source

Once all the hoses have been connected, it’s time to plug the cord into a compatible power outlet (this is usually 120V). These are high-power machines, so never use an outlet that isn’t grounded properly. If the cord doesn’t extend to the cleaning location, feel free to use an extension cord.

Tips for Operating an Electric Pressure Washer

While operating your new cleaning tool, the first thing to remember is always to use both hands. Operating with one hand can cause you to lose control of the spray gun, so try not to get too comfortable. Another helpful tip is to choose your nozzle carefully; each nozzle comes with a different angle that is meant for specific cleaning tasks.

Your pressure washer likely came with several color-coded nozzles, so here's what each color represents:

  • Red:
    0-degree angle, which is the narrowest stream (this can cause a lot of damage to a surface, so it’s no longer suggested that you use the red nozzle type)
  • Yellow:
    15-degree angle, which is best for washing sidewalks and driveways
  • Green:
    25-degree angle that works for most outdoor household chores, like washing patio furniture, meat smokers/grills, or your wooden deck
  • White:
    40-degree angle that is gentle yet powerful enough for cleaning the exterior of your home (windows, siding, etc.)
  • Black:
    65-degree angle that is only for gentle soap cleaning tasks

Electric Pressure Washer Troubleshooting & Maintenance

Like all home and garden tools, even the best electric pressure washer can experience problems. The most common pressure washer issue is low or no pressure coming out of the hose. This could be an issue relating to the nozzle, the spray gun, or the hose itself. Here are the electric pressure washer troubleshooting steps for low or no water pressure:

  • Check the main water supply by removing the garden hose attachment and running your home’s water with no hose.
  • Make sure everything is tightened by checking the nozzles, spray guns, and O-ring connections.
  • Check for clogs in the nozzle, spray gun, or water inlet - most clogs can be cleaned out, but some require replacement parts.
  • Inspect the hose for kinks, twists, or dents.

Proper storage is one of the most important aspects of pressure washer maintenance. A huge perk is that you don't need to remove gas from the fuel tank, but you should always remove any remaining detergent before storing it. Store the hose properly, keeping it free of twists, tangles, or kinks. It's never a good idea to expose your pressure washer to freezing temperatures, but if you have to, you can use an antifreeze designed for pumps to prevent damage.


Frequently Asked Questions

What kind of cleaning agent or detergent should I use with my electric pressure washer?

Krud Kutter is the best pressure washer cleaning agent on the market. Just be sure to choose a soap that is designed specifically for the surface you’re cleaning. For example, the Krud Kutter company has a type of soap for every kind of surface, including concrete/driveway, house/siding, deck/fence, and vehicle/boat. 

Can I use hot or warm water on my electric pressure washer?

Portland Compressor, a company that has been around since 1984, clears up the debate on hot vs. cold water perfectly:

“Hot water pressure washers are specifically designed for hot water use. If you have a cold water machine, running water through the machine at a greater temperature than 140 can damage the pump, and cause serious defects to the washer.”

Can power washers damage car paint? What PSI is safe for washing cars?

When cleaning your car with a pressure washer, Your Mechanic says that it’s essential to

“use the right pressure, nozzle, and car cleaning compounds to get dirt off... Choose a pressure washer with a setting of 1200 – 1900 PSI. It’s safe to use for cars, so you won’t need to worry about damaging the paint on your car. Experts recommend using a pressure washer with 1.4 – 1.6 GPM.”

What are the steps for winterizing a pressure washer?

There are 3 steps for winterizing an electric pressure washer:

  1. 1
    Place the detergent hose in a bucket of tap water. With the garden hose attached, turn on the main water supply.
  2. 2
    With the pressure washer turned on, run water through the spray gun for at least 2 minutes to clear out any remaining detergent from the system. Disconnect the garden hose and pull the spray gun trigger to empty all water from the system.
  3. 3
    Before storing, add a high-quality Pump Saver antifreeze to prevent the inner seals from becoming damaged in cold weather. With all the attachments and hoses properly placed, store your pressure washer in a dry place, such as the garage or garden shed.
Are there any risks or safety precautions when using an electric pressure washer?

The first step in learning how to use an electric pressure washer is to remember that this is not a toy. Just like electric snow blowers, these pressure washers must be used safely. Never point the water stream at another person, always wear the proper protective equipment, and be aware of your surroundings.

What are the best electric pressure washer brands?

These electric pressure washer reviews have covered most of the top manufacturers, including Karcher, AR Blue, Briggs & Stratton, Stanley, and Sun Joe. You might also consider buying a Husky or Ryobi electric pressure washer to make the most of your power washing.


Conclusion

In our honest opinion, the best top rated electric pressure washer for home use is the Sun Joe SPX3000. It’s powerful yet portable, versatile enough to tackle a variety of cleaning tasks, and easy to maneuver with a lightweight design and flexible hose. For industrial cleaning, you’ll want to consider something with a higher PSI, like the Shark CB-353007H.

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