In the realm of exterior home maintenance, it’s easy to get the different types of cleanings, materials, and tasks mixed up. Some of the most confusion exists around the terms “pressure washing” and “power washing”. So what is the difference between the two? The answer is that there isn’t any — most companies use the words interchangeably, so they mean the exact same thing. Both refer to a heavy-duty cleaning done with a professional machine that blasts water at high pressures in order to clean a surface.
Occasionally, home care technicians will use “power washing” to indicate a pressure washing done with hot water, but this isn’t always the case so it can be helpful to double-check with your maintenance professional and ask what they mean. Pressure/Power washing can also include the use of specialized soaps or cleaning fluids, depending on the job it is being used for. For example, most professional companies use soaps to break down organic material like moss, algae, or mold and keep it from coming back.
While pressure/power washers are often available at home maintenance stores, the average homeowner shouldn’t need to buy one and should seriously consider the risks they present. Pressure/Power washing sprays water at such high velocity that it can cut through skin, muscle, and bone much like a knife. Additionally, it has the potential to do serious damage to your home exterior if used improperly. It is generally best to leave pressure/power washing to professionals who know the proper techniques and have access to commercial pressure washers, nozzles, and cleaning solutions in order to provide the best quality cleaning.
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