The best pressure washers on the market: For home, cars, driveways & patios
Modern pressure washers are great for keeping your garden, car or bike clean but with so many models on the market, how do you choose the best one for you? Our reviewers have compiled a handy best selling jet washer comparison table below plus we have included a useful guide to the main features that you find on each model.
One thing to consider first is your budget. You can buy a new, good quality power washer for well under £100 but prices extend as far as £400 plus. It’s easy to get carried away when choosing a pressure washer so consider carefully if you really need that extra attachment!
- The best power washers on the market: A quick comparison
- What to look for when buying a pressure washer
- Top 5 power washer reviews
The best power washers on the market: A quick comparison
|Image||Make & Model||Motor||Retail Price||Latest Price|
|Karcher K4 Full Control Home||1800w water cooled||£249.99||Click here|
|Karcher K2 Premium Home||1400w air cooled||£152.96||Click here|
|Karcher K2 Compact||1400w air cooled||£84.39||Click here|
|Nilfisk C110 4-5 PC Xtra Compact||1400w air cooled||£94.99||Click here|
|Karcher K2 Full Control Home||1400w air cooled||£129.99||Click here|
What to look for when buying a pressure washer
Aside from price, the main features to consider when purchasing a pressure washer are:
- Power output – the motor is a critical part of the machine as this is what creates the pressure. A more powerful a motor usually gives a higher pressure spray and improved flow rate. Power on most machines is between 1400 and 2800 watts, however most in the sub-£200 price bracket are 1400 watts and this is more than adequate for less frequent domestic uses. It’s only if you have larger areas to cover or if you use on a regular basis will you need a higher power machine.
- Maximum water pressure – this is the pressure of the water from the machine, usually measured in bar. A higher pressure machine will be more effective at removing stubborn marks or dirt. Most budget models are around 110 or 120 bar. The high priced Karcher K7 has a maximum pressure of 160 bar, so around 45% more than the lower priced machines. You need to consider how you will use the machine, for simply cleaning the patio, car or bikes then 110 bar is sufficient.
- Water flow rate – this is measures in litres per hour and gives an idea of how quickly you can clean with the power washer. A higher flow rate will mean more water is used per hour and therefore the greater area you can cover. Typical flow rates on budget models are around 350 litres per hour. Again, the premium Karcher K5 and K7 have flow rates of 500 and 600 litres respectively. If you have large areas of driveway or patio to cover then it might be worth considering a mid-range model such as the Karcher K4 which has a flow rate of 420 litres, 20% more than the budget models.
- Weight – jet washers vary considerably in weight, starting at a manageable 4kg for the Karcher K2, increase to a hefty 20kg for the Karcher K7! Most models come with wheels but please be aware that the budget Karcher K2 Compact models do not have wheel and therefore need to be carried around (it can be left in position if required). Luckily its quite lightweight at 4kg but this still need to be an important consideration. The heavy duty Karcher K5 and K7 models weigh in at around 15-20kg so only consider purchasing one of these if you have no concerns moving that weight around.
- Accessories – carefully consider what accessories you really need. Models with lots of accessories look tempting but can you justify the extra cost versus how often you will use them? You can always buy extra attachments later as most parts are easily interchangeable for each brand. The main accessory we would recommend when looking for the best model for patios is a dedicated patio cleaner; this can save a lot of time on larger patios compared to using the traditional lance.
- Price – when comparing pressure washer the prices can vary considerably so its important to decide what features and specification you really require and get the best value model for you. As mentioned above, accessories can always be purchased later. The main questions should be: how often will you use it and what cleaning duties will you require the power washer to perform? Quite often that cheap jet washer will meet your requirements.
Top 5 power washer reviews
1. Karcher K4 Full Control Home Review
The Karcher K4 Full Control is a serious bit of power washing kit. For instance, this model features an LED light telling you the exact pressure that you need to apply on a particular area while cleaning. Plus, this washer also comes with the “Home” kit which includes the T350 patio cleaner and a 1 litre bottle of stone and façade cleaning solution.
Some of the great features of this model are:
- Plug and Clean system, which makes the replacement of detergents easy and effortless
- Extendable aluminium telescopic handle, which makes it easy to move this power washer around (the wheels also help to!)
Although this model is more than the double the price of the cheapest Karcher pressure washers its still one of our best buys; it includes some great features and accessories that go some way to justifying this price. If you require a pressure washer for regular use then the K4 Full Control is definitely worth considering (just bear in mind it’ll take up more space than the cheaper “Compact” models).
2. Karcher K2 Premium Home Review
Water Inlet Filter: The built-in water inlet system prevents dirt and debris from getting in the washer. This is very helpful since debris can damage and potentially ruin the washer.
Lightweight: Weighing less than 8 kg, the Karcher K2 is one of the lightest ones I’ve tested and definitely the easiest to move around. The last thing you want is a washer that is heavy and hard to move when you are cleaning your entire house.
A huge advantage for this washer is that it comes with detergent. A 500 ml bottle of detergent concentrate is included to make your life easier, and by adding water, you can have up to 5 litres of detergent.
It took me a while to find something negative about this power washer. The only thing that I could come up with is that I got pretty messy, but that comes with pressure washing no matter what.
3. Karcher K2 Compact Review
This is a lightweight, portable and highly efficient power washer from Karcher; it’s easy to use and comes with a water inlet filter, which prevents all potential clogging issues to the pump. With a suction tube for detergents attached to this appliance, it becomes easy to make use of Karcher’s range of detergents.
The motor in this model can be automatically controlled by a pressure switch. As this is Karcher’s budget model, accessories are limited. You do get the dirtblaster (high-power jet nozzle) lance for better cleaning but do without the T150 patio cleaner (an effective solution for cleaning patios) that is included with the Karcher K2 Compact Home.
This is a very affordable model and one of the best budget pressure washers under £100.
4. Nilfisk C110 4-5 PC Xtra Compact Review
Powerful: This pressure washer, as the name implies, is incredibly powerful. It has 110 bar pressure and 440 liters per hour water flow. If this all sounds like gibberish to you I’ll make it easier. You can’t get much better than this.
Long Lasting: The 1400 W motor is air cooled, so you know it will last a long time. It keeps it from overheating and crapping out on you, which is always good.
Easy to Use: Not only is it very lightweight, but the K2 is also easy to operate thanks to its click and clean connectors and it’s quick and swivel technology.
The best part of this power washer is the 2-year warranty that is included when you buy it. The warranty makes it so you don’t have to worry about wasting your money or time.
The downside is that it doesn’t come with any detergent. However, it will work with any detergent meant for power washers, so it is easy to buy and it doesn’t leave behind any residues.
5. Karcher K2 Full Control Home Review
Clear settings: The graphics on this washer tell you what setting to use and when to use it, which is helpful for newer users.
On-board Storage: The on-board storage makes it easy to carry all your necessary tools with you as you clean.
Detergent Suction Tube: The detergent suction tube allows you to suck detergent directly from the bottle, and only when it needs it.
This washer is very lightweight and easy to use, which is a huge advantage. It won’t way you down or wear you out any more than any other pressure washer.
The only possible drawback of this washer is that the hose is only 4 meters long. But this is actually plenty long enough and won’t cause any problems for you.