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Discover the Major Differences Between Power Washing and Pressure Washing

power washingDid you know that there’s a big difference between power washing and pressure washing? Most people don’t, so don’t be too hard on yourself if you answered “no.” Today, we’re going to look at the major differences between the two types of cleaning so that you can better understand the applications for each and which one to choose for your cleaning needs.

How they’re similar

Since pressure washing and power washing are both quite similar, it’s understandable that most people are uncertain of the differences between the two. If you need to get stubborn stains up, then utilizing the power of a power washer or pressure washer may be necessary.

Powerful stream of water

Both methods employ a high-powered stream of water that you can direct toward whatever surface you wish to clean. Pressure and power washers are used to clean home exteriors, sidewalks, industrial buildings, and even in some smaller-scale operations like auto body work.

Various power types and uses

Additionally, both power and pressure washers come in a variety of power types (gas and electric) and strengths to suit different purposes. While you may be able to pick up an adequate machine at your local home repair store, it might not deliver the same type of results as one that a professional might use to clean your home.

Power washing

Power washing is the catchall phrase used to describe power stream water cleaning.

The heat is on

However, an actual power washer cleans by using hot water and a very powerful stream. The water must be hot to be considered a real power wash. Power washing is much more efficient at removing stubborn stains than pressure washing because it utilizes the aforementioned hot water.

Applications for power washing

If power washing is better at cleaning than pressure washing is, then why even bother with pressure washing? Should everything get power washed?

High intensity

While power washing is excellent for cleaning some things, it is not okay for cleaning everything. The hot water stream combined with the intense power from a high-grade power washer makes the stream too intense for some applications.

Certain surfaces

Power washing shouldn’t be used on surfaces like roofs, where harsh water streams can get under shingles and possibly dislodge them or deposit water that has a hard time escaping from under shingles and stays behind to mold. Power washers also should not be used on masonry and other porous surfaces, since they can penetrate too deeply and leave water behind. Again, this left-behind water can linger and cause mold or other damage. A power washing professional is the best one to determine whether this application should be used on an individual surface.

Hard stains

Power washers are best used for work on siding and sidewalks, where hard stains – particularly molds and mildews – need to be scoured away. The hot water jet from a power washer is just the trick for killing spores and getting through the tough grime.

Pressure washing

As you may have inferred, pressure washing is suitable for surfaces where power washing would be too strong. Pressure washing works well on masonry and for tackling messes that aren’t too ground-in or grimy to require a full power wash.

Take care of your outdoor surfaces

Pressure washing works by combining a steady stream with cold water to quickly and easily power through most messes. Pressure washing is good for roofs, decks and brick homes since it doesn’t scour the same way that power washing does. Pressure washed surfaces have a much less chance of molding or getting overly blasted from the force and hot water combination of a power washer.

Getting the job done

As spring and summer set in, you’re probably tackling a lot of projects outdoors and may have noticed that the outside of your home is looking a little less than clean every year. If you’re considering giving it a good wash, it’s important to know the difference between pressure and power washing it, and whether or not you’re the best person for the job.

Learning curves

Sure, you can go to a home improvement store and grab yourself a pressure washer, but the system you get there, and the one that a professional could use to clean your home are two very different things. Additionally, you’ll need to tackle the learning curve and use up a weekend of your valuable time to get the job done.

So yes, you could DIY your pressure or power washing job. But you might not be wholly satisfied with the results. You could damage your property or wind up with a messy situation that requires a pro anyway. Calling a professional right away eliminates the time investment and money you’d have to spend on a machine of your own. If you have some pressure or power washing needs, contact us to learn more about our home and industrial cleaning services.

Thank you for reading our blog! How can we help you? Contact us today.


We are a family operated business that specializes in roof repair, conversions, over layment and replacements. We take pride in the services that we provide and make sure that all of our customers are satisfied before the project is complete.

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Pressure Washing
Americas best pressure washing is a family owned and operated business that specializes in cedar shake roof maintenance, repair and treatment. We take pride in the services that we provide and make sure that all of our customers are satisfied before the project is complete.

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