What Does GPM Mean on a Pressure Washer? Choosing the Best Pressure Washing GPM

What Does GPM Mean on a Pressure Washer? Choosing the Best Pressure Washing GPM

For nearly a century, businesses worldwide have adopted pressure washers’ incredible cleaning power to eradicate tough, embedded stains. While introducing these helpful machines into your operations is relatively simple, there are still a few things to figure out before shopping.

One of the most crucial concerns is figuring out what the best GPM for pressure washers is relative to your own cleaning needs.

But wait, what does GPM mean on a pressure washer, anyway?

In this guide, we will cover everything you need to know about the essential specifications that can be found on any power washer. We will help you figure out what is the best GPM for a pressure washer by analyzing all of the factors that go into this determination to help you analyze your own needs.

First, let’s define GPM to help you determine what to look for.

What Does GPM Mean on a Pressure Washer?

While it is an essential specification on any machine, what does GPM mean on a pressure washer, really?

Properly understanding the role of GPM in power washing will help you figure out the best setting for your needs. GPM directly affects how fast you can tackle normal cleaning tasks, and getting the wrong number can spell disaster.

Defining GPM in the Context of Pressure Washing

So, what does GPM mean on a pressure washer?

GPM stands for gallons per minute. It refers to the volume of water that a pressure washer stream outputs in any given minute. Higher GPM values lead to more water, determining your machine’s ability to wash away debris effectively.

The Role of GPM in Cleaning Efficacy and Efficiency

Okay, but what does GPM mean on a pressure washer in terms of cleaning speed?

Every stain you encounter during normal operations requires a different approach. While some small bits of debris, like dust, can be dealt with using just a tiny amount of water, the toughest stains, like embedded oil or rust, require significantly higher GPM values.

By figuring out the best GPM for pressure washers for any given stain, you can wash away the stain. Without the proper GPM, you may be stuck repeatedly going over the same debris in the hopes of entirely removing it.

The scale of your cleaning jobs is also a factor in this decision. For example, if you just have one small stain, accidentally choosing the wrong GPM may be frustrating, but it will only add a few more passes and some scrubbing.

However, multiply one stain for which you do not have the proper GPM by ten or even a hundred, and suddenly, what was supposed to be a quick cleaning job becomes a multi-day fiasco.

Therefore, finding a suitable high GPM machine is crucial for maximizing operational efficiency. After all, one of the most significant benefits of a power washer is cutting down the time your normal cleaning operations take, so be sure you are doing all you can to reap that benefit.

What is the Best GPM for a Pressure Washer?

Now that you know the importance of ensuring your machine has the proper specifications for your cleaning tasks, let’s discuss how to find the ideal settings.

While it would be nice if there were a one-size-fits-all answer, the reality is that there is no single best GPM for pressure washers. Optimal GPM will vary based on the type of stains you are working with, your water supply, the size of your cleaning area, and more.

Factors Influencing Your Ideal GPM

So, what goes into determining the best GPM for pressure washers? These are some of the most prominent factors:

  • Type of Stains: Perhaps the biggest factor in determining an ideal GPM is the type of stain you are dealing with. Lighter stains, like dust atop a surface, can be tackled with lower GPM. Tougher embedded stains like grease, oil, or rust require significantly higher values.
  • Cleaning Area Dimensions: As mentioned above, the size of your cleaning area matters significantly. Small spot cleaning allows you to get away with a lower GPM, but needing multiple passes across a large surface area like a parking lot, factor, or maritime setting will require a higher GPM to speed things up.
  • Water Supply: How much water you have available will also play a role. Choosing the lowest possible GPM will be best if you have a limited water supply or are concerned with energy costs. Conversely, if you have enough water to work with, a higher GPM can give you the versatility you need.
  • Variations Between Tasks: If you plan to tackle multiple types of tasks, it is also in your best interest to find a pressure washer with a modular GPM. If you need to clean everything from delicate vehicles and surfaces to industrial rust and grime, you will need to be able to switch between low and high GPM values at a moment’s notice.

The Best GPM for Pressure Washers in Various Applications

Given these factors, what is the best GPM for a pressure washer? Let’s take a look at some of the most common use cases.

  • Light Tasks: The lightest tasks, like washing cars, outdoor furniture, or delicate siding, will usually be handled with 2 to 3 GPM.
  • Medium Tasks: Middle-ground tasks include concrete driveways, wooden decks, sidewalks, and parking lots. GPM anywhere from 3 to 4 is ideal here.
  • Heavy Tasks: Heavier tasks will pose a problem without suitable GPM. This includes embedded stains like oil and grease in industrial or maritime settings. 4 to 6 GPM is appropriate, and the higher, the better.
  • Other Specialty Tasks: Beyond heavy tasks, there are a few specialized tasks that require even higher values. This can include highly caked-on biofilm on commercial shipping vessels, cleaning out rust and grime from sewers, and more. These jobs often range anywhere from 6 to 10 GPM.

Overall, while this guide should give you a good idea, we also encourage you to contact our team if you have any questions about your cleaning needs!

Other Things to Consider Besides GPM When Choosing a Pressure Washer

GPM is just one of a few factors to consider when shopping for a pressure washer. You must also weigh PSI, engine type, water temperature, accessories, etc.

PSI (Pounds Per Square Inch)

On the list of specifications for any power washer, you will often find another acronym near GPM: PSI. This refers to the strength of water flow, rather than the volume, that your machine delivers.

Both PSI and GPM are equally vital to your cleaning power. A machine with high GPM and low PSI would emit a ton of water without the strength to remove stains, while a low GPM and high PSI machine would be able to break up a stain but lack the water to wash it away.

Light duty PSI ranges from 1000 to 2000, while heavier tasks require PSI above 3500+.

Power Source

Another crucial factor is the type of engine within your machine. The two most prevalent options on the market are gas and electric-powered.

Electric pressure washers are quiet, fantastic for indoor settings, and are much cheaper to maintain. If the cost to repair a pressure washer is a concern, electric is an excellent choice with fewer moving parts that are prone to wearing down over time.

Gas pressure washers are more powerful, offer exceptional mobility since they do not need to be plugged into an outlet, and are slightly more durable in the long run.

Water Temperature

The debate of hot water vs cold water pressure washers is also vital. Generally, heated pressure washers are more powerful, making them excellent for dealing with tough stains like oil and grease.

However, cold water pressure washers are cheaper on average and require less upkeep during winter.

Accessories and Soap

Depending on the stains your business most commonly deals with, finding suitable accessories and detergents can take your cleaning power to an even higher level.

For example, you can find biodegradable soaps from trusted brands like Hotsy specifically formulated for cleaning tasks. Whether you need a light soap that is safe for delicate surfaces like vehicles or potent degreases for industrial settings, you can find something that works for you.

Additionally, accessories like extension wands, foam cannons, and surface cleaners can help you access hard-to-reach areas, providing the flexibility needed to tackle various tasks.

Mobility and Portability

Finally, you want to ensure you can easily access all surfaces within your cleaning area. This often depends on some of the other factors we’ve discussed. A gas pressure washer with an extension wand can easily access the top of an exterior roof. In contrast, a smaller electric pressure washer with a surface cleaner can reach tiny nooks and crannies to remove dust and dirt.

Now that you have everything you need to start shopping, all that is left is to figure out where to rent a pressure washer to get started! Thankfully, the best place to find industrial pressure washers in New Jersey is right before you.

The Perfect Pressure Washer Awaits at RJP Hotsy!

The Garden State’s #1 store for all things power washing is here at RJP Hotsy New Jersey! As the state’s only authorized Hotsy retailer and the leading place for industrial pressure washer repair in NJ, we are by your side at every step along your power washing journey.

We are honored to be trusted by Hotsy, the industry’s best brand with half a century of experience helping businesses worldwide. We have personally worked with several prominent local brands, including the Philadelphia Phillies, Greyhound, and the NJ Transit Authority.

Whether you want assistance with industrial pressure washer trailers in NJ for a one-time job or want the long-term flexibility of industrial pressure washer leasing in NJ, we’ve got you covered.

Our friendly team is highly knowledgeable and compassionate. We will work with you as a strategic partner when you inquire about industrial pressure washer rental in NJ, discussing your cleaning needs and recommending the perfect machine for the job.

You will also have access to our Hotsy warranty repair center, which uses a comprehensive 24-point inspection process to help diagnose and upkeep any maintenance your machine needs. With our speedy service and convenient rentals, you can avoid downtime and keep your business as clean as possible.

Wrapping Up Our Guide to Pressure Washer GPM

Before you begin shopping, let’s recap our discussion to help you find the perfect machine for your needs.

What does GPM mean on a pressure washer?

GPM stands for gallons per minute and describes the amount of water flowing from your machine at any moment. The more water you have flowing, the easier and quicker it will be to wash away stubborn debris. GPM can start as low as 2, but specialty jobs require anywhere from 8 to 10 to remove stains promptly.

Therefore, it is crucial to examine your business’s cleaning needs to find the best GPM for pressure washers, as the ideal number will vary.

Once you are ready to take your cleaning to the next level, the best place to find industrial hot water pressure washers in New Jers here at RJP Hotsy! We pair the most trusted brand in the industry with over 50 years of experience with an easy shopping experience that will leave you with a reliable machine for years to come.

If you enjoyed our guide exploring what is the best GPM for a pressure washer, check out our blog! Other articles you will find on pressure washing include how to repair a pressure washer, the average cost to rent a pressure washer, and how to set up a pressure washer trailer.

Of course, the best way to get all of your questions answered is to contact our friendly team at RJP Hotsy! Whether you are looking for industrial cold water pressure washers in New Jersey for your business, want to know the best GPM for pressure washers, or just need to restock your go-to pressure washing detergent, we’ve got you covered.

Contact us by phone at (609) 286-2958 or stop by our New Egypt storefront, and we will help you effortlessly transform your businesses’ cleaning processes!