When it comes to pressure washers, there are two main types: hot water and cold water. Each type has its own unique benefits and drawbacks. So which one is right for you? Here, we will discuss the pros and cons of each type of pressure washer so that you can make an informed decision.
Cold Water Pressure Washers
Cold water pressure washers use, you guessed it, cold water. They are typically used for jobs that do not require hot water, such as cleaning hard surfaces or removing dirt and grime. Cold water pressure washers are also better for surfaces that can warp with heat, such as wood decks.
These are the most common pressure washers on the market, and are what the vast majority of homeowners are likely to use. Since most people tend to use this type, you’ll see cold water units make up a majority of our best pressure washer list each year.
How do cold water pressure washers work?
Cold water pressure washers work by using pressurized water to remove dirt, grime, and other debris from surfaces. The pressure of the water does all the work, so there is no need for hot water.
Pressure is measured in pounds per square inch (PSI). The higher the PSI, the more pressure the washer will have. Cold water systems typically have PSIs between 1500 and 3000.
What are the best jobs for cold water pressure washers?
- Cleaning driveways
- Washing cars
- Cleaning decks and patios
- Cleaning house siding
- Cleaning dirt, dust, and caked-on mud
Hot Water Pressure Washers (Power Washers)
Hot water pressure washers use hot water to remove dirt, grime, and other debris from surfaces. The hot water is more effective at breaking down tough stains and removing stubborn dirt. Hot water pressure washers are also great for sanitizing surfaces.
Commercial and industrial consumers are the ones who gravitate towards hot water pressure washers because of the type of jobs they need to handle. Most homeowners will not ever need to own one. The exception might be for the true cleaning enthusiast.
How do hot water pressure washers work?
Hot water pressure washers work by passing the water through a heating element, which heats the water to a high temperature and gives the water more cleaning power. The hot water is then mixed with detergent, and the mixture is sprayed onto the surface to be cleaned. The hot water and detergent work together to break down stains and remove dirt.
What are the best jobs for hot water pressure washers?
- Cleaning grease stains and oil stains
- Stripping paint
- Cleaning concrete
- Cleaning tough dirt stains
- Removing mold, mildew, and weeds
- Removing salt
Hot Water vs. Cold Water Pressure Washers FAQs
Which pressure washer costs more?
Hot water models typically cost more money than cold water models due to the added features and functionality. A cold water unit also typically requires less maintenance and thus lower maintenance-related fees.
How hot does the water get in a hot water model?
The water temperature can reach up to 250 degrees Fahrenheit in a hot water pressure washer.
Do hot pressure washers heat the water enough to meet food sanitizing guidelines?
Yes, hot water pressure washers can meet food sanitizing guidelines.
What happens if I use hot water in a cold water pressure washer?
If you use hot water in a cold water pressure washer, it can damage the water pump and other components.
Is hot water better to use than steam?
That depends on the job. Hot water is excellent for breaking down grease and oil at the molecular level, but steam is better for sanitizing surfaces. Some hot water pressure washers can reach the high temperatures necessary for steam cleaning, while others cannot.
Is cold water pressure washing or hot water washing better for engines and automotive parts?
Hot water cuts the grease and oil in engines and automotive parts easier, so you’ll want a hot water pressure washer.
As you can see, there are pros and cons to both hot water and cold water pressure washers. Each type of pressure washer has its own unique benefits and drawbacks. So which one is right for you? It really depends on the job you need to do. If you are cleaning a tough stain, you will need a hot water pressure washer. If you are cleaning a delicate surface, you will need a cold water pressure washer. If you are unsure, it is always best to consult with a professional for the perfect pressure washer for the job.
No matter which type of pressure washer you choose, be sure to read the instructions carefully and follow all safety guidelines. Pressure washers are powerful tools that can cause serious injury if used improperly. So be safe, and happy cleaning!