In April of 2020, Westinghouse announced their entry into the electric pressure washer market with the Westinghouse ePX3000 — A 2030 psi electric pressure washer designed around the concept of portability and efficiency. It has four 360° swiveling caster wheels mounted to the bottom. The actual pressure washer unit itself (minus the wheels and attachments) is barely larger than an 1800W 4-slice toaster. Combine this with a low center of gravity and you’ve got yourself the best compact electric pressure washer on the market. There’s no competing model in the same weight or price class out there that even comes close to beating the ePX3000. In addition, you also get a 3-year residential warranty which should give you peace of mind and shows that Westinghouse stands behind their products. Westinghouse has been in business since 1886, so they have a pretty good idea on how to build durable products.
Recently, Westinghouse updated the model and it’s now called the ePX3050. It received a minor 20psi pressure boost but all other specifications and features remain unchanged. Pricing hasn’t changed either, this is still one of the most affordable 2000-watt electric pressure washers you can buy. The ePX3000 will effortlessly clean everything from your patio to your driveway, and the built-in soap tank makes removing tough stains much easier. There are other excellent alternatives from companies like Sun Joe and Karcher, which I review later in this article, but my personal favorite is the ePX3000/ ePX3050 from Westinghouse. These are more than powerful enough for most homeowners. Plus, it transitions seamlessly between paved and unpaved surfaces thanks to the 360° wheels. If you have serious cleaning needs then you need a gas pressure washer, like the WEN PW31.
Table of Contents...
- 1 Review : Westinghouse ePX3000 / ePX3050
- 1.1 Reviews | Alternative Electric Pressure Washers
- 1.2 Review : Sun Joe SPX3501 | Affordable yet versatile
- 1.3 Review : Karcher K5 Premium
- 1.4 Review : Stanley SHP2150
- 1.5 Review : CAT 1800 / Best Electric Pressure Washer
Review : Westinghouse ePX3000 / ePX3050
VIDEO | A Closer Look at the Westinghouse ePX3000
- compact and lightweight at (16. 5″ High and 19 lbs.) / Easy to store and move around. Low center of gravity.
- Four-wheel 360° steering design. Engineered not to tip over.
- 2030 MAX PSI of deep-cleaning water pressure and up to 1. 76 gal/min. water flow – flexible 15′ Foot nylon braided hose with clear plastic coating for anti-tangling.
- 35’ power cord with inline GFCI
- Professional-style steel gun with onboard detergent tank and 4 adjustable nozzle tips
- Option of additional detergents/chemicals for versatile heavy-duty surface cleaning power on decks, driveways, garage floors, stairs, fencing, patio furniture, and vehicles
- Electric carbon brush / 120V – 13A motor with Total Stop System automatically stops pump when trigger is not engaged to conserve energy, prolong pump life, and added safety
- Free Lifetime Technical Support and a Three-Year Limited Residential Warranty (One Year Commercial) Backed by the Nationwide Coverage of Westinghouse Service and Support Centers
Electric pressure washers have an inherent advantage over gas-powered models when it comes to home use. They get the job done whether you’re removing stains from the siding of your home or blasting mildew off patio furniture. However, they cost far less than a gas-powered unit and weigh less. Not to mention, electric power doesn’t create any harmful CO emissions. So you can use these pressure washers inside your garage without any risk of suffocation. They are also easier to move and store because of how compact they are.
Which is why I always prioritize efficiency and user-friendliness over performance while recommending pressure washers to home users. Anything between 1500 to 2000 psi is more than enough to clean your car or driveway. And 1.5 to 1.8GPM of flow rate is plenty unless you’ve got a really large deck or boat to clean. Most electric pressure washers these days come with onboard tool storage and features like hose reels, and you can decide whether these extras are worth it for you. The ePX3000 doesn’t have a bunch of fancy add-ons but it does pack the most performance per pound compared to any other electric pressure washer I’ve ever seen.
It stands only 16.5” tall (with the wheels installed) and weighs 19lbs. I understand that a lot of you reading this article might be buying your first pressure washer and may not understand how small that really is. Okay, let’s do some comparisons to give you a better perspective. The Sun Joe SPX3501 which is an ultra-powerful 2300 psi electric pressure washer, weighing 46.5 lbs. and stands 38 inches tall. That’s a significant increase in size, considering it has less cleaning power. Look, size isn’t everything. It really depends on your needs, but if you want something small and compact then then either Westinghouse models are a good fit. If you want raw power then consider something like the Generac 7122 SpeedWash (Gas with 3200 PSI). Don’t buy more than you need but make sure you’re realistic about what you intend to use it for.
Clean-up work already takes a lot of effort by itself, you don’t want to add onto that by increasing the size and weight of your tool. Sure, the GreenWorks PW-1800 added mass isn’t for nothing. It is easier to push around thanks to the tall metal handle and large rear wheels. It also has a long wand which means less less bending over to clean. However, the Westinghouse ePX3000 is just designed differently. You don’t have to push it around; you simply pick it up like a briefcase and walk around the yard whenever you need to reach another spot. It doesn’t need a hose reel because that adds weight and increases the chance of something breaking in the future due to added complexity. Plus, the ePX3000 is more affordable than most reputable brands. You also get a much more robust mobility system in the quad caster wheels. Try pulling other pressure washers down from your driveway onto the grass. It will likely tip over because it only has wheels in the rear and the center of gravity is so high up.
With the ePX3000 you can comfortably transition between paved and unpaved surfaces without any hiccups. This thing climbs up slopes like a champ, and you can simply lock each individual wheel to make sure it doesn’t slide off the slope. It also has no trouble rolling over grass that is 4 or 5 inches tall. And it can handle some stones or pebbles without immediately tipping over. In fact, you need to actively try in order to make the ePX3000 tip over. It has a wide base with a low center of gravity, and each caster wheel can swivel a full 360°. Plus, you can lock out just 1 or 2 wheels if you want to gain more control on how the pressure washer moves.
UPGRADE / Newer : ePX3050 — with 2050 PSI / Electric
Now, let’s compare the Westinghouse ePX3000 to a Sun Joe electric pressure washer. How about the SPX3000 which is a 2030psi, 1.76GPM electric model? It’s the closest competition I could find to the Westinghouse in terms of performance specifications. The ePX3000 and SPX3000 are nearly identical if we talk PSI and GPM. However, the Sun Joe weighs 31lbs and is far taller at 33.9”. It is also much more likely to tip over if you pull it down a small step or from the driveway onto your yard.
Sure, you get a slightly more powerful motor. But what good is it if GPM and PSI are the exact same? On top of that, Sun Joe’s SPX3000 actually has a slightly shorter hose compared to the Westinghouse ePX3000/ ePX3050. The ePX3000 comes with a 25-foot nylon braided hose while the SPX3000 is equipped with a 20-foot hose. One area where the SPX3000 wins is in extension wand length- 34” vs 17.5” on the Westinghouse. But the ePX3000 has a length advantage where it actually matters- the hose. You’re getting similar performance in a much more compact package, which is a massive win in my book.
I don’t know what witchcraft Westinghouse employed to create a pressure washer this compact that matches or in some cases, beats out competition nearly twice its size. But one thing’s for sure- they didn’t compromise on reliability or build quality. The entire unit feels rugged, like it can take a few bumps and keep working. However, you need to understand that this isn’t a commercial model. You shouldn’t use it for paint stripping or removing graffiti. If you push the motor for extended periods of time, it will get damaged. Then again, if you operate a business or want something heavy duty you shouldn’t be considering electric anyways. There are lots of 3000 and 4000psi gas-powered pressure washers with commercial-grade OHV engines which are better suited to working all day in extreme conditions.
Once you take the ePX3000 out of its box, assembly is incredibly easy. You don’t require any tools (like screwdrivers or wrenches). There are plastic attachments that you just slide on to pre-cut rails within the main chassis, and there are locking tabs that keep them in place. If you are carrying the pressure washer with you on camping trips in your trailer or RV, you can simply detach the wheels. This will further reduce the size of the already compact ePX3000, and it can easily fit into a cargo slide on your RV.
The ePX3000 comes with 4 quick-attach spray tips ranging from 0° up to 25°. I don’t recommend you use the red nozzle (0°) unless you’re doing stonework or stripping paint. Most of the time, you’ll be using the 15 or 25-degree nozzles. The black tip is for soap application, so you can use it for cleaning windows and vehicles. The type of soap you use is also very important. As mentioned in the user manual, you only want to use thin soap (the kind with water-like consistency). Any soap that is too thick or heavy will clog the nozzle of your ePX3000’s built-in detergent bottle.
During winter, you should always store the pressure washer in a heated environment or at least somewhere that isn’t freezing. And make sure to drain all the water out of the pump otherwise it will freeze and expand, cracking open the pump. This can be fixed by using anti-freeze solutions or pump savers during water. And finally- never use hot water with the ePX3000. It like most consumer pressure washers is designed for use with normal or “cold” water from your garden hose.
Note: Don’t use the pressure washer off of an extension cord, always plug it directly into an outlet. And make sure the GFCI plug is working properly before you operate the pressure washer. The plug has “test” and “reset” buttons.
► Read press release from Westinghouse of their first electric pressure washers.
Reviews | Alternative Electric Pressure Washers
While the Westinghouse ePX3000 is the most efficient pressure washer for the money, there are other options if you want to purchase an electric model. Sun Joe, Karcher, Stanley, etc. all make excellent electric pressure washers. Karcher in particular stands out because they were the first company to make a modern “pressure washer” as we know it today. Back in 1950, Alfred Karcher introduced the DS 350- widely regarded as the first commercially available hot water pressure washer. To this day, Karcher’s pressure washers are regarded as top-of-the-line in terms of build quality and technology. While they do make models for homeowners, their commercial and pro-grade stuff takes priority.
Sun Joe is the brand you go to if you want affordable yet highly performant outdoor electric equipment. Their pressure washers are well-proven by now, and used by everyone from DIYers to small businesses. The SPX lineup from Sun Joe has plenty of options for everyone. You have the SPX3000 with its dual onboard detergent bottles which lets you carry 2 different types of detergents at the same time for washing multiple surfaces. Then, there’s the SPX7000E 2-in-1 which combines a wet/dry vacuum and pressure washer into a single unit. Sun Joe even makes a commercial-grade electric pressure washer, the SPX9009-PRO. This is a truly heavy-duty piece of equipment that’s designed for tough jobs. With a brushless 1800W induction motor allows it can run longer than consumer models, plus maintenance and on-the-fly pressure adjustments are much easier.
Stanley, like Westinghouse, manufactures both electric and gas pressure washer models. Their SHP2150 is one of the most powerful electric pressure washers you can buy, with a maximum rated pressure of 2150psi. Finally, there is CAT. With 1800psi this isn’t the best electric model in terms of pressure output alone, but it also boasts 2GPM of water flow which is higher than most electric pressure washers. The high flow rate makes this CAT pressure washer excellent for cleaning larger decks or patios. The CAT 1800 is also one of the most rugged pressure washers I’ve ever seen, it feels less like a machine targeted at homeowners and more like a commercial workhorse.
Review : Sun Joe SPX3501 | Affordable yet versatile
- Clean your house with cleaner air! The eco-friendly electric motor means no gas, fumes, or maintenance
- Powerful 13-amp motor generates a maximum of 2300 PSI (at initial discharge per CSA internal pressure testing) and 1.48 GPM (with nozzle open at minimum pressure)
- 5 Quick-Connect spray tips (0º, 15º, 25º, 40º and soap) tackle light, medium and heavy-duty cleaning tasks
- Onboard 40.6 fl oz detergent tank and Detergent Dial lets you control the mix
- TSS (Total Stop System) – automatically shuts off the pump when trigger is not engaged to save energy and prolong pump life
- Includes a 34-inch extension wand, 20-foot high pressure hose, 35-foot power cord with GFCI protection, garden hose adapter, needle clean-out tool
- Weight: 46.5 lbs (21.1 kg)
Sun Joe is the king of affordable pressure washers, while at the same time offering a ton of variety. You have 2-in-1 models that integrate a vacuum and pressure washer into the same unit, cordless pressure washers, and much more. The SPX3501 is designed for homeowners who want a reliable mid-range pressure washer but aren’t comfortable spending over 300 bucks on it.
While the SPX3501 isn’t as compact as the Westinghouse ePX3000, it does have some unique strengths. For example, the SPX3501 comes with an additional spray tip compared to the ePX3000 from Westinghouse. You get a 40° tip which comes in handy for cleaning vehicles and delicate furniture. It also has a dial to control the amount of detergent being used, so you can adjust the soap concentration depending on what you’re cleaning. The method by which you fill the soap tank is also quite convenient. You don’t have to bend down, because the tank cap is located towards the top of the pressure washer. Just lift up the lid and start filling directly from a jug/ bottle. With the Westinghouse ePX3000 you must bend down and either tilt the pressure washer itself or use a funnel because the soap tank cap is located at an awkward angle and low to the ground.
So while you do sacrifice portability and mobility compared to the ePX3000, you gain some convenience of operation in return for your compromises. The SPX3501 also has a unique safety feature wherein the pump is automatically turned off if you aren’t pulling the trigger. This ensures no accidental sprays on objects you don’t intend to get wet. Like pets, or people standing around you. It also preserves water and increases pump lifespan through decreased wear over time.
Review : Karcher K5 Premium
- Cleaner. Quicker. NOTE: Refer to the manual for troubleshooting steps
- Integrated hose reel for easy storage – 25ft high pressure hose
- Vario Power Spray wand – easily adjust spray right from the wand
- Dirtblaster spray wand – tackles the hardest jobs in half the time
- N-COR pump – durable, non-corrosive and maintenance-free
- Water cooled induction motor – increases life by up to 5X. Maximum water inlet Temp (°F) – 104
- Onboard detergent tank. Power supply (V/Hz) – 120 / 60
Karcher shows once again why they’re the king of pressure washing. Not because they were the first, but because they continue to innovate and deliver quality products. The K5 Premium is an excellent performer if we go by GPM and PSI figures, but there’s much more to it than what a mere spec sheet can convey. Take the motor for instance- it has extremely high endurance which approaches the level of commercial electric induction motors. The water cooling part is nothing new, a lot of electric pressure washers use water-cooled motors. And an integrated water filter is also standard issue on most pressure washers. But the way Karcher implements these systems is what makes them stand out. Their products tend to last longer than the competition while also performing better.
The K5 Premium has a max PSI of 2000 with a max flow rate of 1.4GPM. Both are above average for electric pressure washers and you will have no trouble cleaning your car, patio, furniture, or driveway with the K5 Premium. It has a built-in detergent tank with an adjustment knob that controls how much detergent is mixed with water. You also get a hose drum mounted right underneath the carry handle. This allows you to store the pressure hose in a tidy way without wasting too much time folding it around with your hands or dangling it off a hook. And every time you need to operate the pressure washer you won’t have to re-attach the pressure hose.
Karcher Plug ‘n’ Clean lets you insert and remove detergent without having to bother with filling a tank. However, you need to use Karcher’s proprietary pressure washer detergent bottles. Just turn them around so the neck is facing downwards (and into the receptacle for the pressure washer). Attach the bottle, and forget about it. Remove the bottle when you’re done cleaning. With internal soap tanks you must clean out the tank before you’re ready to use the pressure washer normally. That’s the case with the ePX3000 from Westinghouse. Say you fill the entire tank with soap but only use half of it to clean the concrete on your driveway. Now you must tilt the pressure washer to drain the rest of the soap in the tank and then proceed to rinse the tank with clean water before you can wash other surfaces with it. This is not an issue if the soap compound you’re using is non-caustic. But a lot of soaps you use to clean your driveway are caustic and can eat away stuff like plastic.
With the K5 Premium you don’t get any QD spray tips because all the different spray angle settings can be adjusted right from the spray wand. This is another thing you’ll find on modern electric pressure washers- instead of using detachable tips, they have different nozzles built right into the wand. So all you have to do is rotate the collar on the wand to get the desired jet angle and speed. There is a separate soap setting on the wand.
Review : Stanley SHP2150
Best Cheap Pressure Washer
- HIGH PRESSURE FOAMER INCLUDED: The specially designed detergent bottle doubles as a high pressure foamer to get tough stuff loose or remove deep-down stains.
- POWERFUL CLEANING FORCE: Perfect for siding, decks, cement, pavement, pools, outdoor furniture, cars, trucks, RVs, ATVs, garbage cans, animal cages and more.
- LEAKPROOF CONNECTIONS: Professional grade brass garden hose connector and 22mm connections. The connection of choice for professional level accessories.
- ATTACHMENTS FOR MOST COMMON PROJECTS: Pressure washer gun, pressure washer wand, 25 foot high pressure hose, foam cannon/detergent tank, 4 quick connect nozzles and o-ring replacement kit.
- WARRANTY AND CUSTOMER SUPPORT: Your new pressure washer is covered with a 2 year limited warranty. Contact customer support anytime for the lifetime of the electric pressure washer
The SHP2150 from Stanley is one of the most powerful electric pressure washers that I’ve ever reviewed. Most electric pressure washers fall within the 1500 to 1800 psi range, which is absolutely adequate for general cleaning tasks. But if you need to clean tough stains off the driveway or get rid of mold/ mildew from the furniture in your patio you need slightly more punch. Around 1800 to 2000 psi, but the SHP2150 goes even further than that. It has a maximum water flow rate of 1.4GPM which is actually not bad, I was expecting them to sacrifice flow rate for higher psi. However this flow rate is standard for electric pressure washers of this size.
The entire pressure washer has been designed to be as ergonomic as possible. For instance, Stanley put the detachable spray tips right on the wand instead of mounting them to holders within the main unit like most other pressure washers. This way you don’t have to bend down and select a different tip, you can swap tips with just one hand while standing straight up. I really appreciate this design choice; however it requires a more secure mounting system for the tips because the wand is constantly moving around and if a tip falls off it will be hard to find later on. I don’t want to spend half an hour searching for a penny-sized spray tip in my backyard. But I trust Stanley’s tip storage system to be sturdy and reliable.
If you want to use detergent, you will have to employ the external bottle which doubles up as a foam generator. Internal soap tanks are nice for convenience but on some pressure washer models like the ePX3000 you have to calculate exactly how much soap you need. Otherwise you end up having to drain the excess before you can resume regular cleaning.
With an external soap bottle there’s always the danger of dropping it somewhere or forgetting to bring it on your trip (the SHP2150 has no tool/ attachment storage options on the outside). Still, it isn’t as big of a hassle as most people think. Just connect the detergent bottle like you would a spray tip and start blasting. At 26lbs and 26.77” tall, the SHP2150 is not as large as some of the other electric pressure washers on this list. It comes in at 2nd place in terms of compactness and weight, right behind the Westinghouse ePX3000.
Review : CAT 1800 / Best Electric Pressure Washer
Commercial ruggedness in a consumer product
- 1800 watt universal motor coupled with the 5 piston pump gives an output of 3600 cleaning units. With a maximum peak pressure of 1800 PSI and flow rate of 2.0 GPM.
- 4 Metal Spray Tips, metal pressure gun and metal lance with brass connections ensures durability of these key components.
- 20 foot kink free rubber hose and 35 foot cord with GFCI gives you unrestricted movement. No more kinks and cracks on your hose, move about and remove out the dirt and grime.
- 600 ml detergent foam blaster bottle adds extra punch in removing dirt and grime. Fill with detergent liquid and connect to pressure gun for a quick fix. No more clumsy on board detergent tanks.
- Push Button ON/OFF switch and on-unit accessory holders makes it easy to assemble, use and store, giving you an easy product handling experience and control.
A few years ago, whenever someone brought up the name “CAT” I would think about their excavators, dump trucks, industrial diesel generators, etc. But it turns out they’ve got their hands in a whole bunch of businesses. They even manufacture phones. And just like their construction equipment, these phones are extremely rugged. Coming back to the CAT 1800, this is a very tough piece of kit. I strongly believe it’s one of the best deals you can get, not because of the PSI rating but because of how it’s built. No, there are no wheels. But with how small and light it is, you don’t need any. Just pick it up and move it around, there’s a perfectly nice carry handle right in the middle for optimum weight balance.
With a flow rate of 2 GPM, the CAT 1800 excels at cleaning large areas. If you’ve got a large deck or driveway, this is the pressure washer to get because it simply pumps out more water in the same amount of time. And without compromising on pressure since the max rated pressure is still a very respectable 1800psi. Just hook up a surface cleaner attachment to the ¼” connector on the spray wand, and you’ll clear out all the dirt and debris from your wooden deck within minutes.
WORK SMARTER : Attaches to power washers up to 2000 PSI
The CAT 1800 comes with an all-metal spray gun and a really tough rubber hose that is still very flexible and easy to loop around. However, the real showstopper is this pressure washer’s unique 5-piston pump. Patented by CAT, it is a tier above standard axial pumps found in most electric pressure washers. Simply put, it can run longer and sustain higher flow rates compared to run of the mill pressure washer pumps.
Combining a high flow rate with good pressure is the key to cleaning performance. In fact, you can measure the theoretical cleaning prowess of a pressure washer by multiplying its PSI and GPM to get Cleaning Units (CU). For the Westinghouse ePX3000, it’s 2030 x 1.76 = 3572 CU. For the CAT 1800, it’s 1800 x 2 = 3600 CU. CAT didn’t just focus on pressure figures, they created an all-rounder with plenty of thump. It comes with a 600ml foam blaster/ soap dispenser to deal with oil and grime. All accessories can be carried onboard since there’s a storage cup on the back of the pressure washer.
PSI vs GPM | Pressure Washer Selection
When buying a pressure washer, cleaning effectiveness should be your primary concern. Not PSI numbers on a spec sheet or the GPM. Cleaning effectiveness is a function of both PSI and GPM, but in the real world a lot of factors play into determining how well your pressure washer works. The angle of your pressure washer spray can have an effect on the cleaning speed. For instance, let’s say there’s a tough stain on your driveway and you find out that your 1800psi pressure washer with a 25° nozzle is barely able to remove it. If you took a 1600psi pressure washer with a 15° nozzle you would get similar results. But here’s the catch- you’ll cover less area so the job will take more time.
That’s also one of the primary differences between electric and gas pressure washers, at least for home usage. It’s not that electric pressure washers can’t remove stains or smudges that gas pressure washers can, but they take nearly twice the time to do so. So while it’s always good to have the most PSI and GPM for any given amount of money, you also must consider the downsides. For instance, gas pressure washers are louder and heavier. Yeah, they perform better but at what cost? Do you really need to go through the hassle of refueling and cleaning out filters if you only use the thing a couple times every year?
Similarly, if you only need to clear some cobwebs and get rid of mold on the porch, do you need 3200psi of gas power? Power isn’t always the answer, you should consider the most efficient solution that requires the least maintenance if you’re an average homeowner. Plus, remember that gas pressure washers can’t be operated indoors because they emit CO. Even if we’re restricting ourselves to just electric, too much pressure can be an issue. Especially if you accidentally throw on that red tip- you could cut a hole right through your work boots. Unless you’re stripping paint or cleaning a lot of dirty concrete, you don’t want over 2000psi and 1.7GPM in a pressure washer.
An effective way to calculate the theoretical cleaning power of a pressure washer is multiplying its PSI with its GPM. That will give you Cleaning Units or CU. To get an idea of PSI vs GPM, think of PSI as the velocity of water coming out and GPM as the weight of water flowing through per unit of time. If you have an extremely high velocity but not a whole lot of mass, you’ll punch through dirt but only in a tiny area. Too much mass and not enough speed means you’ll cover a giant area but get nothing done. You need both to clean effectively. Sometimes high GPM is better because the stains are mild and spread over a large area. Sometimes high PSI is required for spot cleaning tough stains. That’s why you get different spray tips- so you can adjust your water jet depending on what you’re cleaning. For vehicles and windows you don’t want more than 1500 PSI, and the nozzle shouldn’t be narrower than 25°. For concrete and stone you want at least 2000psi and a 15° nozzle.
To increase your cleaning effectiveness, you can buy attachments. Spray wands have universal connectors (either ¼” or ¾”). You can buy 90° tips that let you reach the underside of cars. Or brushes designed specifically for cleaning cars. There are surface cleaner attachments which have a rotating arm with nozzles on either end that push out water jets to spin the arm around. This lets you cover large areas in less time.
Understanding Pressure Washer Nozzles
A narrower nozzle will concentrate all the water into a smaller area, resulting in more force. A wider nozzle will spread out the water over a larger area, reducing force but increasing coverage. You have to decide which nozzle is appropriate for the task you’re doing. Nozzles go from 0° all the way up to 40°. A narrower angle also means your water jet will reach out further. So if you’re cleaning a far-away place like the 2nd story of a building, you might want a narrower nozzle.
Nozzles are color coded based on their angle :
- 0 degrees: Red
- 15 degrees: Yellow
- 25 degrees: Green
- 40 degrees: White
- Soap (greater than 40°): Black
Most of the time, you’ll be using the Yellow or Green tip to clear out mildew or remove stains. Most professionals will advise against using the Red nozzle, some even say you should discard it after purchasing the pressure washer. That’s because a lot of people have accidentally broken skin or hurt someone else by using the Red tip. It produces a straight, extremely focused jet of water. With enough force, water can cut through steel. And it is used to cut metal at factories, just like laser beams. A pressure washer isn’t quite as powerful as those industrial water cutters but it still packs enough force to eat through a leather boot within seconds if you equip the Red tip.
Most of the time, you want to start out with the widest nozzle you think will get the job done. And keep the wand at least 2 feet away from the target surface. Then depending on how it’s going you can bring the wand closer for more cleaning force, or swap out to a narrower tip. The further you take the wand from the surface, the less force you get from the impacting water jet.
Here are some examples of what you can do with each of the different nozzles-
Yellow (15°): Used for removing caked mud from farm equipment or vehicle wheels. Can also remove rust or paint from old surfaces, and mildew from brick walls. Typically used for surface prep before repainting.
Green (25°): An all-purpose nozzle that can clean most surfaces from plastic and masonry to wood and steel. It has a wide area of coverage and can sweep away dirt or leaves from a deck. Anything that isn’t deeply embedded will be dealt with by this nozzle. You can use it on furniture, the siding of your house, your boat, car, etc. It’s gentle enough to not strip away the paint from your vehicles.
White (40°): If you want a light jet for delicate surfaces, this is the nozzle to use. Whether it’s your car, windows, flowerpots, etc. the 40° nozzle acts more like a gentle broom than a fire hose. It is also excellent for rinsing away detergent from your decks or driveways.
Black (Soap): Has the widest angle, used primarily as a soap applicator for vehicles, windows, etc. The lower water velocity due to the larger nozzle orifice means your pressure washer can pull detergent from the tank.
Red Nozzle: Use with extreme caution. Don’t use it on your car unless you want to eat up the plastic trim and strip away paint. It will also scratch up siding and cut through furniture. The red nozzle is intended ONLY for metal and concrete. If you have tough stains from tar, glue, tree sap, dried gum, etc. on your driveway or stonework you might need this nozzle. It’s going to produce a very narrow and powerful jet, so don’t aim it at your person (or anyone else) even by accident.