We get asked that question all the time. With over 50 years’ experience, and one of the leading authorities in the industry, I can say with certainty there is absolutely NO difference between power and pressure washing.

Think about it, what is pressure, and what is power? By definition, they’re both a force of energy used against a surface, simple right? Of course, it isn’t that simple! Although power and pressure washing have the same meaning, there are other very important factors you need to consider that will determine whether you get professional results or just a mediocre job. And from this point on I will be referring to this service as “pressure washing”.

What Does Make a Difference?

The Equipment

Unlike the words power or pressure washing, the equipment used to apply the power or pressure DOES make a difference. Like the saying goes “In order to do the job right, you have to have the right tools.”

Pressure washing involves applying various pressure levels, spray patterns of water and, detergents against a surface to remove dirt, grime, and mold. And that’s why the company you hire to clean your valuable property must have the right equipment. If a contractor shows up at your house or commercial property with a portable pressure washing unit and tells you he can do any job because this unit has a high PSI rating – you most likely will not be happy with the results. I will use Sparkle Wash’s equipment to demonstrate what a professional pressure washing contractor’s equipment should able to do:

  • Their equipment should be able to adjust water pressure from high to low depending on the surface and level of dirt, grime, and mold
  • Their equipment should be able to apply detergents and rinse/clean without changing out hoses or application equipment
  • Their equipment should be able to heat and dispense hot water

The Cleaning Detergents

Like so many things in life, “one detergent doesn’t fit all (I promise that will be my last quote reference!). A professional pressure washing contractor should be using different types of cleaners depending on the surface and substance they need to remove. I know Sparkle Wash uses a proprietary brand of cleaners that are all environmentally safe and will not harm your landscaping, your children, and your pets.

The other factor you need to consider is whether the contractor or technician is trained to use these detergents, safely. If the technician is not trained properly there is a much higher risk of damage to your surface, property or person. So don’t be afraid to ask a potential contractor what type of training they or their technicians have. A reputable pressure washing company will have no problem answering that question.

The Technicians

I don’t know of any profession or job that doesn’t require on-going training and pressure washing is no different. Sure anyone can pick up a pressure washing wand and spray a surface but that doesn’t mean they aren’t really getting it clean or even worse damaging the surface. The art of pressure washing doesn’t consist of blasting a surface with the highest PSI water pressure known to mankind. The art of pressure washing is having the knowledge and training to access the job and then apply the right pressure and detergent to safely clean the surface.

At Sparkle Wash, all new technicians are required to participate in a 6-week on-the-job training program, including coursework on techniques, surfaces, types, and detergents. At Sparkle Wash, Safety First is more than a sound bite and is taken very seriously. All technician, new and existing, are required to know and implement OHSA Safety Standards on every job.

For your protection and the technicians, always ask to see their Certificate of Insurance, if they abide by OSHA Standards and if the person providing the service has formal training.

Even though the answer to your original question was simple, I hope I provided you with helpful information about pressure washing in general and what to look for if you need to hire a pressure washing company. If you still have questions or would like an estimate, please contact me and I will make sure you get the answers you need.