How Does Pressure Washing Actually Work?

How does a pressure washer work exactly? While they’re a well-known cleaning method for their strength, how they actually function remains a mystery for some. Let’s take a look at how pressure washers work and why they’re a beloved cleaning technique.

How Does a Pressure Washer Work?

So, how does a pressure washer work? The reason why they’re able to spray such powerful blasts is because of the water pump, which increases the speed of the water so that it can be shot out at high pressure. Once you pull the trigger for the spray gun, the water is released from the nozzle and mixes with the air.

The strength of pressure washers is measured with pounds per square inch, also known as psi, which can vary based on both the type of washer and the setting chosen on the valve. Some pressures can reach up to 30,000 psi, meaning that they aren’t suited to clean fragile surfaces that are easily damaged.

In addition to utilizing high psi blasts of water, pressure washers also use a detergent that enters into the system through a hose. These cleaning solutions are designed to kill any organic growth on the surfaces they wash and break down contaminants.

Another reason why pressure washers work so effectively is because they can also use a boiler to heat up the water before spraying it out. This makes it easier to wash away grime because the heated water speeds up molecules and loosens their bonds. In addition, hot water will kill off bacteria present on the surfaces.

Important Components

If you want to better learn how a pressure washer works, then it’s important to take a look at the machine’s components. These parts work in tandem to ensure that water can be sprayed out as fast as possible and include the following:

Pressure Washer Soap Nozzle

The nozzle for the gun comes in several different spray patterns, which each offer different benefits and, in turn, are better suited for varying applications. For example, some pressure washer soap nozzles have wider streams which are better for more delicate surfaces, whereas lower, thinner streams are stronger.

High-Pressure Hose

The hose is how the water travels from the washer to the cleaning attachment you’re using. However, it’s far from your standard garden hose. In order to withstand the power of high-pressure water, the hose used with a pressure washer must be sufficiently reinforced with wire layers, rubber, and other materials.

Water Pump

The water pump is responsible for creating high-pressure blasts that this cleaning technique is known for. As the engine pulls the pump in one direction, it sucks water from the faucet. After being pushed in the opposite direction, it sprays out the water at high pressure.


In order for the water pump to function properly, it needs to be powered. This is achieved through either a gas engine or an electric motor, which varies depending on the particular pressure washer you’re using.

For Professional Pressure Washing Services, Reach Out to Grime Stoppers Today

Even though you now understand how a pressure washer works, it’s best to have an expert handle the equipment, as they know how to operate it safely and efficiently. At Grime Stoppers, you can schedule professional pressure washing in Owensboro, KY, and surrounding areas for your home or business. In addition, we also offer gutter cleaning and many other services. For more information and to schedule an appointment, reach out to us today.