Cleaning may seem simple, but it can get complicated when dealing with industrial messes. You need to know which equipment is best for any given situation, and you want to know which pressure washer is best for your specific needs.
Before making any purchases, it’s essential to research your options to justify the cost of a particular fee.
There are two leading pressure washers: hot and cold water pressure washers.
You might think the difference between the two is as simple as cold and hot water, but these machines vary widely in application, cleaning ability, and cost.
What is a cold water pressure washer, and what surfaces is it best for?
When you think of pressure washers, you most likely think of cold water pressure washers. These pieces of equipment are typically rented to homeowners for small jobs and can be found at most home improvement stores.
These machines do a great job of cleaning dirt and grime from sidewalks and fences and can be used to wash most surfaces around the average home. Cold water pressure washers are also best for temperature-sensitive surfaces.
A temperature-sensitive surface is any material that is subject to high temperatures. Two of the main varieties include any surface made of wood or plastic. For these types of materials, it is best to use a cold-pressure washer.
What is a hot water pressure washer, and what surfaces is it best for?
Hot water pressure washers are heavy-duty versions of traditional cold water pressure washers. These industrial-strength cleaners can handle any mess a cold-water pressure washer can’t. However, they also have some advantages and work in situations that cold water cannot solve.
A hot-pressure washer is the only effective way to deal with oil and grease. When hot water and high pressure come into contact with oil, they tear it apart on a molecular level. The heat quickly wipes away any spills, making cleanup quick and easy.
A hot water pressure washer works well if the surface is not temperature sensitive. From metal, which includes many vehicles and building materials, to hardened surfaces like concrete, a hot water pressure washer can also clean many surfaces, if not better than a cold water washer.
Which industries are cold pressure washers best for?
For pressure washers, cold water is best for smaller messes. If your business is housing related, such as cleaning services, this is the equipment you want. Unfortunately, this machine may not be for you if your wash requires more power.
Cold water pressure washers are often not suitable for industrial work. Oil and grease are an ever-present problem in most heavy machinery industries. Cold water won’t work on oil or grease because the high pressure isn’t enough to break up stubborn spills. In these cases, you only have one choice regarding pressure washers.
Which industries are hot water pressure washers best suited for?
Hot water pressure washers are designed for industrial cleaning jobs. When
you need to worry about the maintenance and cleaning of heavy machinery. A cold water pressure washer can do very little overall.
Some industries in particular can benefit from using hot water pressure washers. Hot water pressure washing is the most effective way to deal with the grease that coats the surfaces of various vital mechanical parts. Let’s look at some industries that typically benefit from purchasing a hot water pressure washer.
a) Catering services
Oil is an essential ingredient in preparing various dishes in commercial food service. Whether it’s filling a deep fryer or sizzling in a pan, the oil can often be released from its intended container. Once on the floor, this creates an accident waiting to happen, as a fast-moving cook could slip and injure himself.
A hot water pressure washer quickly degreases any kitchen surface, allowing staff to move with speed necessary to keep serving hungry customers. Not only that, but the heat does a great job of killing any bacteria that might spoil your stored food.
Properly lubricated machinery is the cornerstone of a well-run job site, and grease is a natural byproduct of efficient equipment maintenance. You don’t want excess oil or grease covering surfaces; you must keep clean and reduce productivity.
In these cases, the worst thing you can do is use a cold water pressure washer. Plain water won’t do much to degrease these surfaces, and you’ll just push around to remove any grease you’re trying to wash off. Hot water is the only correct choice for site cleaning.
For professional truck drivers, every second counts. There are always other loads to haul; extra time cleaning your vehicle can be a hassle. But when dust and grime coat your vehicle, it can affect your reputation and company.
It would help to have a pressure washer that can handle road grime and more to keep your truck clean and tidy. Not only that but excess oil and grease can be dangerous when loading and unloading truck chassis. Hot water pressure washers are designed in such a way to handle these situations.
For anyone who works in an auto workshop, grease is just part of the day-to-day operations. Cars need oil, and grease ensures all vehicle components are well-lubricated and run efficiently. This means that most of the mess you’ll tackle will require serious cleaning power.
Chemical spills pose a fall hazard and emit toxic fumes that can injure employees. A hot water pressure washer is the best solution for these and many other messes.
How do cold and hot water pressure washers cost differently?
When you buy specialized equipment, it stands to reason that you may have to deal with higher costs. Hot and cold water pressure washers are no different. Cold pressure washers cost less, and if you have a small amount of cleaning, they might be the right choice.
But if the surface you’re cleaning has been exposed to even the smallest amount of oil and grease, you have no choice: You must use a hot water pressure washer. A hot water pressure washer is the only machine capable of dealing with grease residue.
Not only that, but a hot water pressure washer can handle any spill that a cold water unit can handle. That way, you get two models of pressure washers for the price of one. This machine’s hot, pressurized water can clean everything from dirt and grime to oil and grease.
While hot and cold water is suitable for less stubborn dirt, only hot water will provide the cleaning power needed for good industrial maintenance. While the bottom line is essential in any business decision, you usually get what you pay for.
How hot water pressure washers work
Hot water has a powerful punch of energy when released into the cleaning equation. This energy also lowers the surface tension of the water, making it easier and more effective to penetrate oil and dirt molecules.
To successfully remove grease and grime, a hot water pressure washer has three key elements—heat, agitation, and soap. Here’s how they work:
- As mentioned above, the heat creates high-speed molecular action that makes the cleaner more active and helps lower the surface tension of the water, allowing it to penetrate dirt effectively at the molecular level.
- Agitation is the effect of the volume and pressure of water hitting a surface—similar to scrubbing dishes by hand in a kitchen sink.
- Soap chemically breaks the bond between the dirt and the surface. It starts when oil and grease molecules attach to dirt and trap or bind them to the surface. Cleaners use softeners to emulsify oils and greases. Once the oil and water can mix to form an emulsion, the wash water carries the dirt still attached to the oil and grease.