Best Pressure Washer 2018 – Buyers Guide

Whether it is your patio, car or decking that you want to keep in top condition, a pressure washer will make the job a whole lot easier. But the best pressure washer for you depends on a lot of factors, from its weight and transportability to how powerful it is and how long the hose is.

The price also widely varies, from around £40 to well over £300.

We have reviewed the best pressure washers available in one handy guide, so you don’t have to, as well as finding the best deals and prices.

The Best Pressure Washers – Our Top Picks

Best Overall: Kärcher K4
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Kärcher K4 Full Control Home Pressure Washer
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  • Power: 1800W
  • Flow Rate: 420L/h
  • Max Pressure: 130 bar
  • Hose Length: 6m
  • Cable Length: 5m
  • Weight: 11.42kg
Best Budget: Makita HW101
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Makita HW101 Compact Pressure Washer
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  • Power: 1300W
  • Flow Rate: 360L/h
  • Max Pressure: 100 bar
  • Hose Length: 3m
  • Cable Length: 4m
  • Weight: 6.5kg
Best Commercial: Kärcher K7
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Kärcher K7 Premium Full Control Plus
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  • Power: 2800W
  • Flow Rate: 600L/h
  • Max Pressure: 160 bar
  • Hose Length: 10m
  • Cable Length: 5m
  • Weight: 25kg

Best Home Pressure Washers

Kärcher K4 Full Control Home Pressure Washer

Kärcher is possibly the best-known brand for pressure washers, and there are now more than seven models to choose from. The K4 is the best for most households, regarding price and functionality, without going overboard.

The feature we love the most is the LED display which lets you know the ideal pressure for the surface you are trying to clean. This comes in handy when changing between items or levels of dirt. Simply twist the spray lance to adjust the pressure.

There is also a stability foot on the bottom of the body, so it will remain where you put it, and you won’t risk toppling it over.

There is a water inlet filter to prevent any dirt particles from blocking the pump. Ideal for cleaning everything from barbecues to pavements to large vehicles, the aluminium telescopic hose makes transportation and storage easy.

Newer models from Kärcher aren’t really much different, especially if you’re just after something which can undertake regular cleaning tasks outside.

Included with this package is the Full Control trigger gun, Vario spray lance, Dirt Blaster spray lance, 1L 3-in-1 Stone Cleaner and T350 Patio Cleaner, which is great for the price.

We like

  • Offers great results
  • Cleaning solution bottles fit directly to the machine
  • Hose guidance through machine and stability foot means no tilting

We disike

  • Assembly instructions are a bit vague and unreliable

Final Verdict

All of the attachments and handy technology anybody could want, that will make using a pressure washer much more manageable for anyone

+ Specifications

  • Power: 1800W
  • Flow Rate: 420L/h
  • Max Pressure: 130 bar
  • Hose Length: 6m
  • Cable Length: 5m
  • Weight: 11.42kg

+ Downloads

Kärcher K4 Full Control User Manual

Download

Vax PowerWash P86-P4-T

Vax is a heavyweight name in the vacuum and carpet washer industries, and their move into the pressure washer one leaves a lot of expectations. We found that it seriously rivals some of the more expensive, ‘industrial’ washers on the market.

With an incredibly generous flow rate of 510L/h and a wattage of 2500, it provides plenty of power and cleaning capability. The pressure is also 160 bars, giving an incredibly forceful clean. The hose length is also a considerable 10m, whereas most others only sit around the 3-6m range.

Another reason we love it is that it is relatively lightweight. The other washers we have reviewed with similar power outputs weigh over 20kg, so the Vax is your choice if you will be moving it around a lot.

It is primarily made for larger areas which need more power, but even if you only have a small patio, this machine will vastly cut down the time it takes for it to get sparkling clean.

The good news is that it also comes with all of the tools you’d ever need – a car brush, rotary brush, jet nozzle, lance, patio kit, solution nozzle and turbo nozzle. So there is no reason why you can’t use it to clean pretty much any outdoor surface, for the one-off price.

It even comes with a bottle of universal solution, and a dedicated car protect detergent, so you’re ready to go straight away. All accessories can be kept on board for easy reach and storage.

We like

  • Incredibly powerful for the price and weight
  • Very easy assembly and setup
  • Fully adaptable to any need

We disike

  • Slightly noisy but this is to be expected

Final Verdict

Our top pick if you want a pressure washer with all the functions and power of the high-end options, but for half the price

+ Specifications

  • Power: 2500W
  • Flow Rate: 510L/h
  • Max Pressure: 160 bar
  • Hose Length: 10m
  • Cable Length: 5m
  • Weight: 7.7kg

Nilfisk C 135 bar Pressure Washer

Nilfisk is another big name in the cleaning equipment industry, and again there are various models available. We have chosen the 135 bar as it means it is an excellent all-round product capable of tackling any surface in a medium-sized domestic environment.

Changing the chosen accessory is easy, just clicking to the lance and releasing with the press of a button. The aluminium pump is super reliable and long-lasting, yet lightweight.

Onboard accessory storage keeps everything in one place so you won’t risk losing or damaging anything. There is also a storage reel for the hose and electrical cables. The wheeled upright design makes transportation more manageable, and the resistant, recyclable casing protects the machine from any dirt or damage.

It comes with the Tornado and Powerspeed nozzles, for general cleaning and rinsing and more powerful, concentrated cleaning for stubborn dirt.

Other reviewers say it is much better than its Kärcher equivalent, the K4, and we’d have to say it has the edge too.

We like

  • Induction motor and aluminium pump for longer lasting machine
  • Quieter than most other models

We disike

  • On the heavy side

Final Verdict

One of the best options in its price range, with enough pressure and power to tackle almost all cleaning no matter how stubborn

+ Specifications

  • Power: 1700W
  • Flow Rate: 440L/h
  • Max Pressure: 135 bar
  • Hose Length: 6m
  • Cable Length: 5m
  • Weight: 17.1kg

+ Downloads

Nilfisk C 135 bar Pressure Washer User Manual

Download

Spear & Jackson S1810PW

Coming a very closely called second place in our overall favourites list, this is a fantastic all-rounder for an incredibly reasonable price.

If you’re after something on the smaller side but just as powerful as its larger cousins, this is a great option. Spear & Jackson are well loved in the gardening community, but you aren’t just restricted to cleaning the garden patio with the S1810PW.

Included is a patio cleaner, variable lance, turbo lance and a fixed brush – meaning it is ideal for anything from patios to car wheels or conservatories. These can be stored away in the SnapShut compartment on board, protected from the elements and any damage or loss.

One of the most prominent design elements of this machine was its manoeuvrability. There are a long handle and hose, but there is also the ability to use it on its side with the help of the additional wheels so it can follow you round like a vacuum cleaner, as opposed to having to carry it everywhere.

The 150 bar pressure is so strong that it shouldn’t be used for brickwork or windows as they could be easily damaged, but it will happily sort out any other surface.

We like

  • Plenty of added tools
  • Very easy transportation for any area
  • Relatively lightweight

We disike

  • Patio brush is not as effective as the other attachments

Final Verdict

If you’re on a budget but want something which will do everything you could every need perfectly well, this is a very good bet

+ Specifications

  • Power: 1800W
  • Flow Rate: 420L/h
  • Max Pressure: 150 bar
  • Hose Length: 6m
  • Cable Length: 6m
  • Weight: 10.5kg

Best Budget Pressure Washer

Makita HW101 Compact Pressure Washer

For anybody after a basic yet effective washer, this Makita model is great. There is enough power for small patio areas or vehicles, so don’t be put off by its size.

Despite low pressure usually being a bad thing, because of the bar rating of the Makita, it can also be used to clean more delicate areas. Most pressure washers are far too powerful to clean windows and brickwork, but the HW101 is perfectly suited and ideal if this is what you are after.

It is best suited for anyone who needs a pressure washer on an occasional basis, perhaps for cleaning garden furniture before use in the summer or cleaning the car/conservatory.

We like

  • Low pressure for cleaning windows/doors
  • Basic and simple to use

We disike

  • Not stable when in use, can easily tip over
  • Poor instructions

Final Verdict

It doesn’t give the results of more powerful pressurised models but is a good option for anyone who will use it intermittently or for small areas, without breaking the bank

+ Specifications

  • Power: 1300W
  • Flow Rate: 360L/h
  • Max Pressure: 100 bar
  • Hose Length: 3m
  • Cable Length: 4m
  • Weight: 6.5kg

+ Downloads

Makita HW101 User Manual

Download

B&Q Pressure Washer

Even though it is very much at the lower end of the price scale for pressure washers, it doesn’t mean there is any less performance compared to a lot of its rivals.

It is a great, easy to lift and carry product perfectly capable of tackling most light to medium tasks. The coverage area of the spray is only small, so it wouldn’t be ideal for any large space or stubborn stains as it would be time-consuming, but it would be perfect if you need a quick blast every so often.

Having said this, it removes things like moss and algae from patios and cobblestones with ease. For the price, it is an incredibly effective product and worth giving a go if you’re sceptical about splashing out hundreds of pounds on a washer with only slightly better specifications.

We like

  • Low Price
  • Really easy to lift and move
  • Very easy to follow instructions

We disike

  • No extra fittings available that we could find
  • Quite loud

Final Verdict

A washer for a much lower price than the majority of others on the market, yet pretty on par for most cleaning tasks

+ Specifications

  • Power: 1400W
  • Flow Rate: 330L/h
  • Max Pressure: 100 bar
  • Hose Length: 3m
  • Cable Length: N/A
  • Weight: 5.61kg

Best Car Pressure Washers

Hozelock Pico Power Pressure Washer

With a high-pressure bar for its size, the Pico Power perfectly describes itself as small and mighty.

It has been designed to be moved around your home with ease, with Hozelock understanding that no two houses and outdoor areas are the same. You can carry it with the easy to grip fixed handle or wheel it behind you using the extendable one. This also keeps its storage size to a minimum.

The 6m hose is generous enough to help you out without restricting your movements. There are also plenty of attachments available so you can adapt it for your desired use, such as a patio cleaner head if you’d like to be able to use it for more than the car.

It is only slightly more expensive than the Bosch EasyAquatak 110, but a lot more powerful and adaptable, so the better choice if you want a product you can use to clean other things in the future.

We like

  • Easy to assemble and change fittings
  • Incredibly compact design

We disike

  • Nothing we can find!

Final Verdict

Brilliant for tackling items requiring medium pressure, and if you are short on space for storage

+ Specifications

  • Power: 1700W
  • Flow Rate: 438L/h
  • Max Pressure: 140 bar
  • Hose Length: 6mm
  • Cable Length: 5m
  • Weight: 8kg

+ Downloads

Hozelock Pico Power Pressure Washer User Manual

Download

Bosch EasyAquatak 110 High-Pressure Washer

Most regular pressure washers will also clean your car or bike perfectly well, but if you are looking for a product which is just for your vehicle, you are probably after something which is small, transportable, easy to manage and not so powerful that it will soak you in the process, too.

The Bosch EasyAquatak is small yet will tackle dirt comfortably, with a decent amount of pressure and power for its size – easily enough for removing mud. It is compact and incredibly lightweight, so is no trouble to move around or lift to reach those hard to reach places such as car roofs. The broad base will keep it stable even with maximum reaching.

There is an attachment to fit your soap detergent bottle to, as well as a dispenser for the nozzle. This makes cleaning your car easier, as the right amount of soap is used for the task and you can choose which detergent to use.

It comes with a Variable Fan Jet Nozzle, Rotary Nozzle, and High-Pressure Detergent Nozzle, but there are plenty of extra additions available for a really great price if needed, such as a wash brush and a 6m long hose extension. Although the standard hose is easy to direct with being short, it can be a bit annoying for higher areas.

You aren’t just restricted to car washing though – it will also clean small patio areas and garden furniture, too.

We like

  • Incredibly effective manoeuvrability
  • Great price
  • Compact design makes it easy to store

We disike

  • Hose length is short

Final Verdict

An ideal product for anyone who needs a quick cleaning blast occasionally or just needs to clean outdoor furniture and vehicles

+ Specifications

  • Power: 1300W
  • Flow Rate: 330L/h
  • Max Pressure: 110 bar
  • Hose Length: 3m
  • Cable Length: 5m
  • Weight: 3.8kg

+ Downloads

Bosch EasyAquatak 110 User Manual

Download

Best Commercial Pressure Washers

Kärcher K7 Premium Full Control Plus

Kärcher has been dealt the tasks of cleaning Nelson’s Column, the Space Needle and Mount Rushmore in the past, so there is no denying they know what they are doing. If you are after something which can easily take care of large areas, stubborn ground in dirt or merely give you all the choice and flexibility you would ever need, this is a winning option.

It is the most powerful in the Kärcher range, capable of cleaning anything that would possibly need cleaning in your home. You can change the pressure with the press of a button, and use the LED screen recommendation as a guide.

The 3-in-1 lance makes cleaning fast and easy, as it has the vario, dirt blaster & detergent settings all in one tool. So if you are washing your car and suddenly realise your patio needs a quick blast, there is no changing of accessories required.

Also included is a T450 tool for cleaning large areas of patios & decking, and a 1L stone & façade detergent.

Worried about storage space? The handle is telescopic, and there is storage for the cable, high-pressure gun and lances. The hose can be wound into the integrated hose reel after use, too.

We like

  • Very powerful
  • Great control even on full pressure
  • Long 10m hose saves having to move the machine around
  • Surprisingly quiet

We disike

  • Take care with the power, on paint and brickwork
  • Requires a lot of water

Final Verdict

Unbeatable performance. If you have the funds and will be a regular user, it is worth investing

+ Specifications

  • Power: 2800W
  • Flow Rate: 600L/h
  • Max Pressure: 160 bar
  • Hose Length: 10m
  • Cable Length: 5m
  • Weight: 25kg

+ Downloads

Kärcher K7 Premium Full Control Plus User Manual

Download

Nilfisk Excellent 150 Induction Pressure Washer

Requiring no assembly and powerful enough for any application, the Nilfisk 150 is super easy to use.

A fan jet Tornado PR nozzle controls pressure regulation, and there is also an extension lance, dirtblaster lance (provides a concentrated blast of power to remove dirt), pressure adjustable lance (allows you to alter the level of water pressure to suit the task), and low-pressure gun included.

There is also a detergent bottle and foaming nozzle which attaches to the end of the lance. Because of this method, the detergent doesn’t have to be flushed out of the hose and gun after use.

All of the included standard attachments can be stored on the machine. The wheels make it easy to move about on level surfaces, which is good as it is on the heavy side.

We like

  • Range of attachments for every job
  • Ease of use, building and transportation

We disike

  • Some of plastic is a bit flimsy

Final Verdict

Worth spending that little bit more for a machine which will tackle most jobs if you have the ability

+ Specifications

  • Power: 2900W
  • Flow Rate: 500L/h
  • Max Pressure: 150 bar
  • Hose Length: 10m
  • Cable Length: 5m
  • Weight: 21.2kg

+ Downloads

Nilfisk Excellent 150 Induction Pressure Washer User Manual

Download

Help and Resources

Pressure Washer Buying Guide

What Will You Be Cleaning?

This is the first question to ask yourself long before you start looking at pressure washers. Most are suitable for washing bins and garden furniture/pots, and some of the more powerful ones will also tackle your patio and decking.

Commercial cleaners may be needed if you have a heavy duty area, such as kennels or stables. For personal gardens, home pressure washers will likely be adequate.

Attachments

All pressure washers come with the standard lance hose attachment for general cleaning, and depending on your particular model there may be extra attachments included or available as an extra.

This could be anything from car wash brushes to detergent guns to more concentrated nozzles for an extra blast. If you want to be able to clean your patio, a dedicated attachment can be easier as it creates less mess and removes dirt rather than just pushing it away.

Thoroughly research what is available for your chosen model and if it is suitable for your needs. Also bear in mind that you may want to use your washer for an added reason at a later date, so may want extras to be available if you choose.

Power

The higher the wattage, the more powerful the engine and larger the motor. They can generally cover more area in a smaller amount of time.

It could, therefore, be worth looking into a washer around the 2000W mark if you have a very large patio, or regularly have a lot of deep cleaning to undertake. They can cope with higher pressures for a longer period.Water Pressure

The greater the bar, the higher the pressure. And, the more suitable for cleaning stubborn dirt and grime. Higher pressure basically means a greater force.

  • 100 bars – light pressure – suitable for woodwork such as decking or light garden furniture.
  • 110 bars – medium pressure – vehicles, plastic furniture and small patios.
  • 120+ bars – high pressure – patios, paths, driveways, metal.

Hose Length

This matters depending on what you will be cleaning. A longer hose could be useful if you have a larger garden or are going to be washing your car and want to be reaching every inch.

FAQ

Which brands make the best pressure washers?

Kärcher and Nilfisk are the two biggest names you will see when looking at pressure washers, as they both concentrate on these products. However, a lot of gardening brands also have models available, such as Spear & Jackson.

Companies who often make things such as drills, lawn mowers, vacuums and other electrical household items have also emerged into the pressure washer competition, such as Bosch and VonHaus. Stores such as B&Q, Argos or Homebase also have their own models available, often at the lower price and power end of the scale.

Do I need an outdoor tap to connect the pressure washer to?

Some models do require an outdoor tap, but these are generally on the lower end of the price scale. More powerful washers may need a regular high-pressure hose to be connected, or they may work if attached to a water tank tap.

Every model varies, so check the specifications before you purchase to ensure it is suitable for your setup.

Can I use a pressure washer to clean my windows?

Generally, no. Pressure washers are very powerful, and glass is simply too delicate for them. Never use a pressure washer for cleaning your brickwork or windows unless it is a strictly specified use, as most will cause damage.