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SouthernCutter
11-04-2007, 07:55 PM
I was just wondering, is there any money in pressure washing if i was to offer it to my customers?

Truly Beautiful Lawn Care
11-04-2007, 08:24 PM
Yes! There is a lot of money in pressure washing. To your customers, you can offer: drivway, patio and house washing.
Jay

DOLMARatOS
11-05-2007, 01:27 AM
I agree. There is a HUGE< MASSIVE market in our area. With 4 real seasons we see everything. I've solidly considered doing pressure-washing as a part-time business as it is not offered around here.

Some uses:

House, driveway, decks, buildings, large vehicles, fleet vehicles, heavy equipment, shopping carts, graffiti clean-up, fences, pool covers, paint removal, and more and more.

The equipment is a fairly low investment and the returns are great because it's fuel and labor only. Few chemicals, etc.

Plus, very few people actually have pressure washers where a lot of people have mowers and snow-shovels. lol

Hmmmmm. Maybe i'd better save some money up for a rig.

jeffex
11-05-2007, 05:32 AM
Ah yes but it's just like mowing. its not about doing the work , its about getting the work. www.deckdoctorpressurewashing.com I'v been doing this longer than mowing. It saved me this year in the drought.

FCPWLLC
11-06-2007, 07:44 AM
I was just wondering, is there any money in pressure washing if i was to offer it to my customers?


Yes there is money in Pressure washing..... My new toy... 2008 105th anniversary Harley Road King

Also, it is just like mowing, you need the right equipment like the machine in my trailer.

And you need to study all you can. You know the difference between a weed and grass, you also need to know about different dirts, stains, surfaces, flows, pressures, chemicals etc.

Budsport
11-07-2007, 12:22 AM
I was just wondering, is there any money in pressure washing if i was to offer it to my customers?

Had a pressure washing job today. This was one of a half dozen or so I've done in the past month. It took me about two hours to wash a single wide trailer, two gallon bottles of chlorox and not even a tank of gas for the pressure washer. So after all was said and done I had about $10.00 in supplies/gas and made $275.00.

FCPWLLC
11-07-2007, 06:59 AM
Had a pressure washing job today. This was one of a half dozen or so I've done in the past month. It took me about two hours to wash a single wide trailer, two gallon bottles of chlorox and not even a tank of gas for the pressure washer. So after all was said and done I had about $10.00 in supplies/gas and made $275.00.

Good money there. Learn to do that same job in 45 minutes and you'll throw away the lawn mowers. LOL I had 30 mowing acounts a few years back and sold the biz because it was getting in the way of pressure washing.

Seriously, I can do that mobile home in 30-45 minutes. The thing to remember is that even though you get faster, don't lower the price. As you see, it took you 2 hours. How long would it have taken for home owner to do it? This is how you sell it. Price it with that in mind versus how long it takes you.

Budsport
11-07-2007, 09:03 AM
Good money there. Learn to do that same job in 45 minutes and you'll throw away the lawn mowers. LOL I had 30 mowing acounts a few years back and sold the biz because it was getting in the way of pressure washing.

Seriously, I can do that mobile home in 30-45 minutes. The thing to remember is that even though you get faster, don't lower the price. As you see, it took you 2 hours. How long would it have taken for home owner to do it? This is how you sell it. Price it with that in mind versus how long it takes you.


That good advise. I will work towards that. I am new at pressure washing and wanted to make sure I did a good job for the customer, however as I was working on it I noticed things I could have done differenty to speed the process up. Thanks again.

M0wNG0
11-14-2007, 08:20 PM
I have been thinking about starting pressure washing, does anyone know a website that i can look at some equipment. I found this site http://www.dultmeier.com/mobile-car-wash.asp, but cant find any more

FCPWLLC
11-15-2007, 07:05 AM
I have been thinking about starting pressure washing, does anyone know a website that i can look at some equipment. I found this site http://www.dultmeier.com/mobile-car-wash.asp, but cant find any more

http://www.pressuretek.com

Great customer service... Great prices.... And quality equipment.

M0wNG0
11-15-2007, 11:58 AM
Thanks, where did you get that setup in your first picture in the above post?

FCPWLLC
11-15-2007, 01:44 PM
Thanks, where did you get that setup in your first picture in the above post?

I built it myself with parts from Bob at http://www.pressuretek.com.

Got Trailer and Tank locally.

M0wNG0
11-16-2007, 12:42 AM
Nice, looks really professional. Thats kinda the setup i want. I want my own water supply instead of using the customers water, just seems a little more professional. Is it necessity to have hot water also?

CPOonfinal
11-23-2007, 12:41 AM
I have experience in both lawn maintenance and pressure washing. I got to Florida from VA and the area was saturated with LCO's. I took up pressure washing. I did A LOT of reading before I did my first job. Did well, but it's a totally different kind of business.
1. Use their water. I've never taken my own and the customer doesn't mind. Unless you get a commercial acct where water isn't necessarily available use the customers. Water is VERY heavy to haul around.
2. Chemicals are ever important. I use a concentrate I bought from Sunbright Supply.com. I also use liquid pool chlorine. I get pool chlorine for about $1/gal as a contractor's price from the local pool supply store.
3. I have (3) 26gal tanks, my 4Kpsi 4gpm machine, 200' chemical hose, Shurflo 3.6gpm electric pump, couple of specialty nozzles, and a 22' surface cleaner. That's the bulk of my equipment. Cost around 2K for that and some chemicals.
4. Mix chlorine 50/50 with water for you "chemical wash." Buy 1gal of chlorine and get 2gal of solution. I buy 13 gal and fill one 26 gal tank. With that I can clean the ENTIRE outside of a 2000sqft home (including the roof). Chlorox tends to KILL turf grass, pool chlorine doesn't. Don't ask me why, I have no idea.
5. I made my own chemical application wand out of PVC. BTW, use as little metal as possilbe when putting together your chemical system.
6. Best $350 I ever spent was on my surface cleaner. BIG $$$$$$ as up-sells.
7. I price jobs between $75 and $100 per hour with a 1 hour minimum or .10c per sq foot based on living space for the roof as well as .10c for the structure. I could easily get paid $400 for a 2000 sqft house. Customer doesn't know my hourly fee.
8. Here is the catch. When I was running my LCO I never did more than an ounce of advertising. I rode around on Sunday mornings (11am-12am) for a couple of weeks asking people if they needed their lawn cut. The man of the house was out playing golf or some other activity which allowed him to gaff of the yard. Got all my business that way in just a couple of weeks. Word-of-mouth after that. Before you knew it I had the entire street of 3acre yards......pretty good. Pressure washing on the other hand isn't so much of a repeat-customer type business. If you wash someones house by the time they need it again they've probably forgotten who washed it in the first place. You have to advertise!!! I was spending approx $500/mo in advertising. I did the phone book(s), and a coupon magazine that comes out monthly.
9. There's a lot more I could write but it's near midnight and I'm pooped.

jeffex
11-23-2007, 06:21 AM
I made my own website and it cost $10 to buy the domain name a year. godaddy.com is where i registered. they have online editors you can make a simple site from . I make my own business cards on my computer and hand them out to anyone I can . This method takes time to build up a name . I agree you need to advertise in the p-wash business to generate steady income. There is repeat customers but it usually is every 2-3 years for a deck and 5+ for a house wash. I have been doing this for 16 years and the repeat customers generate referrals for you . A referral is the BEST customer. They generate new work for you at no cost and they usually come with an idea of how much you charge.

M0wNG0
11-23-2007, 03:04 PM
I have experience in both lawn maintenance and pressure washing. I got to Florida from VA and the area was saturated with LCO's. I took up pressure washing. I did A LOT of reading before I did my first job. Did well, but it's a totally different kind of business.
1. Use their water. I've never taken my own and the customer doesn't mind. Unless you get a commercial acct where water isn't necessarily available use the customers. Water is VERY heavy to haul around.
2. Chemicals are ever important. I use a concentrate I bought from Sunbright Supply.com. I also use liquid pool chlorine. I get pool chlorine for about $1/gal as a contractor's price from the local pool supply store.
3. I have (3) 26gal tanks, my 4Kpsi 4gpm machine, 200' chemical hose, Shurflo 3.6gpm electric pump, couple of specialty nozzles, and a 22' surface cleaner. That's the bulk of my equipment. Cost around 2K for that and some chemicals.
4. Mix chlorine 50/50 with water for you "chemical wash." Buy 1gal of chlorine and get 2gal of solution. I buy 13 gal and fill one 26 gal tank. With that I can clean the ENTIRE outside of a 2000sqft home (including the roof). Chlorox tends to KILL turf grass, pool chlorine doesn't. Don't ask me why, I have no idea.
5. I made my own chemical application wand out of PVC. BTW, use as little metal as possilbe when putting together your chemical system.
6. Best $350 I ever spent was on my surface cleaner. BIG $$$$$$ as up-sells.
7. I price jobs between $75 and $100 per hour with a 1 hour minimum or .10c per sq foot based on living space for the roof as well as .10c for the structure. I could easily get paid $400 for a 2000 sqft house. Customer doesn't know my hourly fee.
8. Here is the catch. When I was running my LCO I never did more than an ounce of advertising. I rode around on Sunday mornings (11am-12am) for a couple of weeks asking people if they needed their lawn cut. The man of the house was out playing golf or some other activity which allowed him to gaff of the yard. Got all my business that way in just a couple of weeks. Word-of-mouth after that. Before you knew it I had the entire street of 3acre yards......pretty good. Pressure washing on the other hand isn't so much of a repeat-customer type business. If you wash someones house by the time they need it again they've probably forgotten who washed it in the first place. You have to advertise!!! I was spending approx $500/mo in advertising. I did the phone book(s), and a coupon magazine that comes out monthly.
9. There's a lot more I could write but it's near midnight and I'm pooped.


Thanks that explained a lot, I 'm thinking that i need to wait a while before i start anything.

CPOonfinal
11-23-2007, 03:37 PM
I read my post from last night and I must say I was a tired puppy. To add a little more info to my previous post the word pressure in "Pressure Washing" isn't the key component to pressure washing at all. Many homeowners brag about their 4000psi and 5000psi machines that put out 1.9gpm or 2.1 gpm. These pressure washers are near worthless (at least from a time management point of view). In my estimation, if you don't have a machine that has an output of at least 4gpm you're going to be working WAY too hard. Basically, it's not the pressure it's the volume. I run my machine at around 2500 psi. In fact, when I go to clean the house (especially a shingle roof) and I'm going to rinse the cleaning solution, my spray-pattern is 2'-2.5' wide and I can run my hand through it at the tip. No pressure, just lots of water.

MOwNGO,
Why the second thoughts? Just do some research and get the right tools for the job. Feel free to ask me any question that comes up. If I don't know it I can find out for you. "I know people."

Grouch
11-23-2007, 04:04 PM
Invest in the best when purchasing your equipment. Shy away from the box store brands. In my rental business, I use pressure washers with Honda GX engines and Cat pumps. My 3000 PSI pump lasted 8 years before I ever turned a wrench on it, then only had to do a repack. My 1500PSI finally stuck the unloader after 12 years. A couple of things to be aware of (1) never let the unit freeze, and (2) use some pump saver if you're not going to be using it for a while. This displaces the water and preserves the rubber components.

M0wNG0
11-23-2007, 04:31 PM
MOwNGO,
Why the second thoughts? Just do some research and get the right tools for the job. Feel free to ask me any question that comes up. If I don't know it I can find out for you. "I know people."

Not really second thoughts just I'm not going to jump into starting a full-time business, just getting some good equipment and doing it part-time with just minimal advertising. But you really changed my mind on getting a mobile set-up with a water tank, i'm going to focus on mainly residental and just use there water.

CPOonfinal
11-23-2007, 05:45 PM
If and when I get back into landscape maintenance and installation I'll use pressure washing as an annual up-sell. Especially here in the South where a house probably needs washed annually and the roof every 2-3 years. I won't do it as it's own individual business again. I say that now but I have a job tomorrow. It's for a friend though. I'll consider taking pictures of my gear and my process while I'm at it. BTW, I bought my pressure washer from Lowes. I was going to get a belt drive unit ($1,500) from a company in Jacksonville, fl but I bought this unit because the unloader was jacked up and I got it for $499 (reg $1000). Bought a new unloader and never looked back. It's got the honda engine and a reasonably good pump. Like the previous poster wrote, I expect this unit to last a long time so long as I keep up the preventive maintenance.

Truly Beautiful Lawn Care
11-24-2007, 08:16 AM
CPOonfinal,
Would your screen name mean: Chief Petty Officer on his may out the door? I'm in J'ville also. I do lawn maintenance and also pressure wash/surface cleaning. Business is ok. I'm about 80% lawn and 20% washing. As always... looking for more accounts! Good tips on the GPM vs pressure. I'm running 4000 psi at 4 GPM's (hot/cold). I love it! With the right chemical application its a breeze.

CPOonfinal
11-24-2007, 09:14 AM
TBLC,
You hit the nail on the head with what my name means....former/current military? It is a breeze and with being in this part of the country it's easy to up-sell or even make part of a contract. I'll see you in J-ville next fall so long as my detailer hooks me up.
Chief.

Truly Beautiful Lawn Care
11-24-2007, 09:48 AM
Cool! Nice to meet you bro. I'm Jay... ENCS at the BRIG. Hopefully your detailer will hook you up. Its nice here for the most part.

CPOonfinal
11-24-2007, 10:31 AM
Cool, I agree. I would PM you but I don't have PM capability. My brother is an ENC BTW. I was stationed in Jax 2 years ago but for only 10mos. Were you there then? If so, we probably met at the porch, maybe more than once. I worked directly across the street from the porch but got transferred to Pcola after a family issue. My wife was already stationed in Pcola. Jax seemed to be a very incestuous place but great other than that. A lot of pressure washing jobs there as well as landscape maintenance. I would love to get contracted to maintain some of the property on the base and maybe do some pressure washing at base housing.
What kind of set-up do you have?

chillman
11-26-2007, 11:22 AM
Yes there is money in Pressure washing..... My new toy... 2008 105th anniversary Harley Road King

Also, it is just like mowing, you need the right equipment like the machine in my trailer.

And you need to study all you can. You know the difference between a weed and grass, you also need to know about different dirts, stains, surfaces, flows, pressures, chemicals etc.

If you dont mind me asking what are the specs on the trailor in the first pic? Looks like a great setup to get started. Cost?

Az Gardener
11-26-2007, 03:08 PM
I have considered this kind of up sell service I am just nervous about the potential for damage. Flagstone peels up and etches easily, paint can also easily peel and that is just with water pressure, to say nothing of what might happen with once you add chem's. to the equation.

How long does it take to get your technique and methodology down? Do I just worry too much? Keep in mind it wont be me it will be employees doing the work. Still think it is a good idea?

CPOonfinal
11-26-2007, 07:16 PM
Paint peeling, the occasional flower, ripping a shingle, or bleaching something are all things you let the customer know ahead of time. That said, if you use the right tip on your wand you shouldn't have any problems. Like I mentioned before, I use a tip that I can run my hand through. You shouldn't have to apply a lot of pressure while doing this type of job unless you aren't using the right chemicals/soap. To avoid bleaching something move everything away from the house. Also, try to avoid untreated fences. If you rip a shingle you better have a hammer and a nail or roof calking available. I let the customer know the potential for damage but have only killed a tomato plant and removed some sealant off of a beautifully treated deck. I resealed the deck and spent a dollar for a couple tomato plants. No biggie.

FCPWLLC
11-29-2007, 08:07 AM
If you dont mind me asking what are the specs on the trailor in the first pic? Looks like a great setup to get started. Cost?

20 hp Honda coupled to a 5.6 gpm @3500 psi General TS2021 pump. 225 Gallon water tank and 100 ft Non-Marking Pressure Hose.

the cleaner
01-12-2008, 01:19 AM
Yes there is money in Pressure washing..... My new toy... 2008 105th anniversary Harley Road King

Also, it is just like mowing, you need the right equipment like the machine in my trailer.

And you need to study all you can. You know the difference between a weed and grass, you also need to know about different dirts, stains, surfaces, flows, pressures, chemicals etc.


Hey Mike nice bike.Funny seeing you here :laugh:

FCPWLLC
01-12-2008, 07:36 AM
Hey Mike nice bike.Funny seeing you here :laugh:


I'm everywhere dude. I don't mind helping some grass cutters out if they don't sell PW'ing for mowing prices. LOL

lawnscapesLLC
01-12-2008, 10:17 PM
do you guys use hot water or are the chemicals the most important thing?

the cleaner
01-12-2008, 10:52 PM
do you guys use hot water or are the chemicals the most important thing?


Yes our rigs are set up with hotwater only. We do use chemicals when needed.

FCPWLLC
01-13-2008, 07:16 AM
I do mostly residential, so chems are my best friend. But nothing cleans a dirty Bank Drive-Thru better than Hot Water.