Are Battery Powered Pressure Washers Worth it?
Pressure washers are not only excellent cleaning machines, but they are also more economical with water than a regular garden hose. However, the more popular gas and corded pressure washers can be quite expensive to buy and maintain.
That’s why manufacturers such as Dewalt, and Bosch, among others, came up with the battery-powered pressure washers. Although these cordless pressure washers are relatively new in the market, they have a growing demand. Because of this, other consumers are always wondering if they are worth the fuss.
Like other pressure washer types, these cordless, battery-powered(Li-Ion) pressure washers have both benefits and drawbacks. Battery-powered pressure washers are quieter, have no emissions, lightweight and more portable but have less cleaning power.
This post will shine some light on the pros and cons of battery-powered pressure washers, and it’s up to you to decide if they are worth the expense.
What is a battery-powered pressure washer?
Also called a cordless pressure washer, electrical handheld pressure washers run on one or two rechargeable Lithium-ion batteries with light to medium spraying power. They are lightweight, compact, and do not require an electrical outlet or water source to work.
One 4.0Ah fully-charged battery lasts between 20-40 minutes, depending on the type of task and model. Some modern models can run for 60 minutes before a recharge, which is enough time to complete most light pressure washing tasks.
The spraying power of most models can range from 300 PSI to 1300 PSI. There are also battery-powered pressure washers with tanks, which are in-built water reservoirs. Other models use a bucket as a water source instead of connecting it to a hose, thus allowing you to use it away from your house.
How does a battery-powered pressure washer work?
Even with varying brands and models, battery-powered pressure washers work the same way. They use electric power from a battery to run the machine’s engine. First, the battery supplies power to a pump. This pump then draws in the water and sends it via two suction valves to one piston each. The pistons are on a movable plate(swash plate) moved back and forth by the water pressure. This motion sends the water at high speed through pressure valves to the nozzle, and the water jets out at high pressure. The motor speed will determine the pressure of the water jets.
Cordless pressure washer pros and cons
Battery powered machines have been gaining popularity over the recent years for a number of reasons. Although battery-powered pressure washers are the least powerful of the three main types, they still produce enough pressure in Pound Per Square Inch(PSI) to clean most surfaces.
Pros of battery-powered pressure washers
- Battery-powered pressure washers are very quiet, with less than 85 decibels. This is great to use if you’re a suburban homeowner. It also allows you to use it even at night.
- It has no emissions, making it more environmentally friendly than the gas models, which produce fumes that can also irritate your respiratory tract.
- They are lightweight, making them portable and easier to move around with. This makes it an excellent handheld pressure washer.
- Most cordless pressure washers have a compact design, making them easy to carry and store in your car’s boot.
- It’s flexible to use since it is cordless. As long as the battery is fully charged, you can use this cordless pressure washer when there is no power or power source.
- These machines can also draw water from a bucket instead of depending only on a garden hose for water. This makes it convenient to use in areas far from a faucet.
- The battery-powered pressure washer has little to no maintenance, making it user-friendly and excellent for people with little to no pressure washer experience.
- Most cordless pressure washer models are quite low-priced compared with gas and corded ones.
- These machines are also safe to use in high-traffic places without causing accidents. They do not have power cords or garden hoses that could potentially cause tripping accidents.
- They are easy to set up and start, ideal for people with little to no experience with pressure washing.
Cons of battery-powered pressure washers
- With about 800 PSI, these battery-powered pressure washers have less power compared to both gas and corded pressure washers. However, it is unsuitable for heavy-duty jobs and stubborn stains such as stripping paint.
- These machines are also not as durable and long-lasting as gas pressure washers since they are made of lighter plastic instead of metal like the gas models.
What do you clean with a cordless pressure washer?
Although battery-powered pressure washers are the least powerful than the gas and corded ones, they also have varying pressure depending on the model. Some brands also come with a wide range of nozzle attachments for different tasks. This means you have to use the right cordless pressure washer and the right attachment for the right job. Here are some of the items you can clean with your cordless pressure washer;
- Vehicles and boats: Battery-powered pressure washers have a slightly lower PSI than the corded models, making them excellent for cars and vehicles without damaging the finish.
- Motorbikes and bicycles
- Pets: A 5-bar pressure washer should be gentle enough to clean your dog. It’s also important to test the spray on your hand to see if the water jet is too strong.
- Remote properties that have no water or power connections
- Outdoor structures like pet and storage shelters and garden furniture
- Moderately dirty driveway.
- Wood and sealed floors
- Fragile structures like windows
How much is a cordless pressure washer?
The average cost of a light-duty battery-powered washer is about $246, while heavy-duty cordless pressure washers average around $422. While your pressure washer’s cleaning capabilities play a significant role in the cost, it’s not the only factor. Factors that affect the cost of cordless pressure washers include:
- Intended use
- Cleaning power in PSI
- Total battery capacity
- Type of pump
- Length of water hose
- Number of nozzles available
- Presence of adjustable pressure
- Presence of a detergent tank
Battery-powered pressure washers are worth buying for light to medium cleaning jobs. They are highly maneuverable, lightweight, relatively inexpensive, have almost the same cleaning power as a corded one, are garden hose free, and have a good battery run time. They are also excellent and efficient for remote and light pressure washing needs.
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Therefore, someone who needs a cordless pressure washer is into outdoor activities such as biking, RVing, boat riding, or owning remote properties such as farms and workshops. Cordless pressure washers may soon overtake the corded ones in popularity when they improve their cleaning power and battery capacity.
However, if you’re looking for a pressure washer for heavy-duty jobs, the cordless power washer is not for you.