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  #1  
Old 08-24-2013, 08:47 PM
mowlifebaby mowlifebaby is offline
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Not sure with what equipement to start with

Hi,

I'm working full time (50-60 hrs) during the week in lawn care as an employee. I'd like to start to work for myself after work and during the weekend doing some power washing. So there is not so many hours involved for the equipement I would be buying.

I would like to wash patio, fences, roofs, gutters, hardscapes. As for the moment, only residential stuff. We have about 1000 residential customers at the co I work for so I think this will be my area of business.

I'm not sure about what equipement I should be buying. I need to buy from John deere. I have an eye on the premium series cold water medium duty 3000 psi honda or subaru engine.

OR I should have a lower psi with commercial series heavy duty the 1500 psi or the 2700 psi.

I've heard you should not use more than 500-1000 psi on a house so I'm getting a lot interested in the 1500 psi one.

What's your opinion.
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  #2  
Old 08-24-2013, 09:29 PM
ducnut ducnut is online now
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You really need to go down to your JD dealer and talk with them. We use one of their premium models (3000GS), but, don't pressure wash as a regular part of business. The Subaru engine, according to propaganda, is superior to the Honda. I really like it. However, Hondas are reliable, so there's no need to fix what isn't broken. The choice is yours. You want the triplex pump. I wouldn't go any less than 3000psi. You'll find that concrete, brick, and decks require more than the 1500psi you mentioned. Get a complete set of tips, including the "power tip". Keep in mind that the commercial stuff is a lot heavier. The one we have is plenty for one man to lift. If I were to recommend, I'd get the same one we have. It'll be plenty to start out with.
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  #3  
Old 08-24-2013, 09:35 PM
whiffyspark whiffyspark is online now
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I would go with a softwash setup for residential.

Pressure washers have their place.
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  #4  
Old 08-24-2013, 09:54 PM
mowlifebaby mowlifebaby is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by whiffyspark View Post
I would go with a softwash setup for residential.

Pressure washers have their place.
What would be an ideal softwash setup?
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  #5  
Old 08-24-2013, 09:50 PM
mowlifebaby mowlifebaby is offline
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I really liked the 1500 psi commercial one since it was handheld, 87 lbs and would fit way better in a hatchback car. Would working closer to the surface I'm working on when doing some hardscapes washing do the tricks or not?

I've heard the pump on the premium one is not that good for commercial use.

Mind you, this is only a temporary solution until I get more money for more gears and a pick up trucks. What's the height of the one you own?
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  #6  
Old 08-25-2013, 10:15 AM
ducnut ducnut is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by whiffyspark View Post
I would go with a softwash setup for residential.

Pressure washers have their place.
That's why there's a pressure regulator on the pump. You don't have to blast everything at max psi.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mowlifebaby View Post
I'm working on when doing some hardscapes washing do the tricks or not?
No.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mowlifebaby View Post
I've heard the pump on the premium one is not that good for commercial use.
IDK, haven't had any problems. It is a triplex, so there shouldn't be any issues. The pump is rebuildable, though. And, JD pressure washers are made by Mi-T-M, which are some of the best in the business.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mowlifebaby View Post
What's the height of the one you own?
Not exactly sure as it's being stored elsewhere, but, no more than ~2ft.
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1st Class Lawn Service

'13 Hustler X-ONE, 60", Kohler ECV749 EFI
'05 Hustler FasTrak, 42", Honda GXV530
'13 Toro Timemaster 30"
'02 Lawn Boy SilverPro 21"
Stihl BR600 blower
Stihl BG55 blower
Stihl FS55R trimmer
Stihl KM55R Kombi system
Stihl MS180C chain saw
Stihl HS45 hedge trimmer
RedMax Reciprocator
Echo SRM225 trimmer
Echo GT-2000 trimmer
Gravely WB edger
Husqvarna 580BTS blower
Dolmar 245.4 string trimmer
'06 Chevrolet Silverado
'13 Bravo Star, 7'X12', V-nose
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  #7  
Old 08-25-2013, 11:15 AM
mowlifebaby mowlifebaby is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ducnut View Post
That's why there's a pressure regulator on the pump. You don't have to blast everything at max psi.



No.



IDK, haven't had any problems. It is a triplex, so there shouldn't be any issues. The pump is rebuildable, though. And, JD pressure washers are made by Mi-T-M, which are some of the best in the business.



Not exactly sure as it's being stored elsewhere, but, no more than ~2ft.
Thank you for all your quick answers. The 2ft height of the cart is something I can deal with no problem. The only problem is I'd be probably using the machine AT LEAST, the bare minimum, 10h a week. So the premium series might be a problem.

Do you do softwash using chemicals or you just use pressure to wash? Because it seems like low pressure is the key when the chemicals do the work. As of pressure only, I guess you are right, 1500 psi isn't strong enough for bricks, concrete, hardscapes.

It seems like there's two differents way to look at things. I'm not quite sure what direction to take. but hardscapes would be a huge part of my business, just as well as washing house, roofs, gutters, fences, decks, patios. Like I said, just as right now, we have a data base of 1000 residential homes, just for starting. And I will go big doing advertising. Premium series wont cut it. If I go for pressure only, I would need the 2700 psi commercial one I guess. But low pressure with chemicals looks to be the new trend in the industry.

I need to do more research. I will be starting this next year.
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  #8  
Old 08-26-2013, 10:19 AM
ducnut ducnut is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mowlifebaby View Post
The 2ft height of the cart is something I can deal with no problem. The only problem is I'd be probably using the machine AT LEAST, the bare minimum, 10h a week. So the premium series might be a problem.
As I mentioned, you really need to go to the dealer and see what the differences are. It appears the only difference between the 3000psi models is that the commercial version has a bigger engine. The pumps look to be the same. It's a shame that JD's site doesn't better list the specifications, so one would know for sure.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mowlifebaby View Post
Do you do softwash using chemicals or you just use pressure to wash? Because it seems like low pressure is the key when the chemicals do the work. As of pressure only, I guess you are right, 1500 psi isn't strong enough for bricks, concrete, hardscapes.
We try and use Mold Armor house wash (spotty availability, around here). It's been the best at removing staining on gutters. If it can get that off, it'll clean whatever is on the siding.

As mentioned, get the full set of spray tips. You get four different spray pattern tips (0, 15, 25, 40 degree patterns), so you can use the one that best fits the job. On siding, you can dial back the pump pressure and use a fan tip to keep from damaging anything. The fifth tip is a soaping tip. When you drop the pickup tube into your cleaner of choice, it'll automatically dilute it down as it comes through the pump. This particular tip produces a low-pressure, soapy output. It works brilliantly. When you're done applying the cleaner, just put your high-pressure tip back on and blast off the soap and grime, without touching the pressure regulator. There's no need to pull the pickup tube, as it'll only siphon with the soaping tip. Again, you want a "power tip", too. I've had good results with the Turbo Tip.

No. 1500psi isn't enough to do anything with. I've done several jobs for contractors. For them, they're usually doing paint or coating work. They want the surface free of all loose material, residue, and grime. High-pressure and the power tip work great for this. 1500psi will be a joke, as it's not enough to get crap off the surface. As before, I use Mold Armor on these jobs.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mowlifebaby View Post
I need to do more research. I will be starting this next year.
You've got plenty of time to think about it. Also, think about how you're going to market this. Lastly, make sure your employer is onboard with your plans, as it sounds like you're going to be using their customer base as a spring board for your own business.
__________________
1st Class Lawn Service

'13 Hustler X-ONE, 60", Kohler ECV749 EFI
'05 Hustler FasTrak, 42", Honda GXV530
'13 Toro Timemaster 30"
'02 Lawn Boy SilverPro 21"
Stihl BR600 blower
Stihl BG55 blower
Stihl FS55R trimmer
Stihl KM55R Kombi system
Stihl MS180C chain saw
Stihl HS45 hedge trimmer
RedMax Reciprocator
Echo SRM225 trimmer
Echo GT-2000 trimmer
Gravely WB edger
Husqvarna 580BTS blower
Dolmar 245.4 string trimmer
'06 Chevrolet Silverado
'13 Bravo Star, 7'X12', V-nose
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  #9  
Old 08-26-2013, 07:57 PM
mowlifebaby mowlifebaby is offline
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thank you so much for you two guys, you've been great help so far. I'm sure I'll need you guys in the futur!
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  #10  
Old 08-24-2013, 10:07 PM
whiffyspark whiffyspark is online now
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Pressuretek has good starter setups. The 5850 package would be fine for you.
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