by Doug Rucker Doug Rucker

Portable Pressure Washer Setup

Portable Pressure Washer Setup

When starting a pressure washing business, many people chose to begin with a portable unit.  So in this portable pressure washer setup post, we offer a video and detailed, expert advice.  Many ask if a 2-3 Gallon Per Minute machine good enough to start with?  You can certainly start with any unit you choose, but our recommendation is always the Mad Max belt drive 4 Gallon Per Minute portable pressure washer.  So to help those of you just starting out, here’s what we can offer.  We walk through an unboxing and set up for this great starter machine.

MAD MAX PORTABLE PRESSURE WASHER

This unit is a 3500 psi machine and is ideal for a limited budget.  So let this be the minimum machine you would start out with.  While you can get some cheaper machines at a home improvement store, this unit will last much longer.  Keep in mind that home improvement store options are not designed for everyday, commercial use.  They are designed to be used by one homeowner very rarely.  But the Mad Max is an industrial grade, professional model designed with those in this business in mind.

PORTABLE PRESSURE WASHER HOSE REEL MOUNT

One great option that we recommend is to include the hose reel mount.  Because it has wheels, it easily rolls in and out of a truck or van and moves around easily on a job site.  I got my start on this exact type of machine 37 years ago that hauled and roll in and out of with a pick up truck.  As your business grows requiring upgrade to a second machine, this will still come in handy as a spare or as a second unit on the job on to do a second job at the same time.

ACCESSORY KIT

This unit comes with great accessories such as a gun, a chrome plated wand, and connectors.  Of course, you also get the hose and tips.  We recommend using sealant and thread tape on all your connections, but this will be a separate purchase.  If you intend to downstream with this unit, you would want to purchase the JROD nozzle kit.  Don’t miss any part of the video because we provide detailed set up instructions too extensive to go into on this post.  If you are new to the pressure washing industry, you can learn a little bit more about who we are here.

portable pressure washer set up

by Doug Rucker Doug Rucker

PRESSURE WASHER HOSE LENGTH

PRESSURE WASHER HOSE LENGTH

One of the questions many new pressure washing professionals have is how much pressure washer hose length do I need?  Typically, new pressure washing professionals start out with a portable pressure washer.  And one of loyal YouTube channel viewers is inquiring about this very thing.  We always recommend starting out with a BELT DRIVE pressure washer because it is far more reliable for commercial use.  In addition, you can connect to a buffer tank to draw water.

PORTABLE PRESSURE WASHER

When using a portable pressure washer, there is no need for any more than 100 feet of hose.  With proper set up of the portable machine, you can easily get 200 feet of coverage because you are using two different hoses collectively.  You could easily add an additional 50 foot spare hose for larger projects.  But we recommend 100 foot of initial pressure wash hose for portable units.  In addition, our experience is that a one wire hose is much easier to manage because they are lighter in weight.  The two wire hose is heavier, doesn’t last any longer, and costs more.

HOOK UP MECHANICS

Another consideration with portable pressure washer hose length is how you will hook it up.  There are couple different options to choose from.  First, you could use quick connects to connect hoses as needed.  A second option is a 3/8 inch coupler.  This is the best option if you are storing the hose on any type of hose reel.  The quick connects take up more straight space than the coupler which makes the circular hose reel wrapping much more challenging.  So you would need to decide if you’re rolling the 100 foot hose up together with the 50 foot hose for storage.

PORTABLE PRESSURE WASHER WITH HOSE REEL

One great option we offer at Doug Rucker Store is a portable pressure washer with hose reel.  We also remove all the bend restrictors from every hose because they are a huge nuisance to work with.  The bend restrictors trap water which causes rust.  Finally, check out some of the FAQs about the various training opportunities we provide in the Houston area.

Pressure Washer Hose Length

by Doug Rucker Doug Rucker

Pressure Washing Trailer

PRESSURE WASHING TRAILER

If you are starting a pressure washing business, you will be considering how to set up your equipment.  One option is using an enclosed truck or trailer, and you can find an example of this here.  But another option is utilizing an open PRESSURE WASHING TRAILER for your equipment.  With the exception of a few small details, the set up for both an enclosed or open truck or trailer is the same as far as equipment.  There is a greater need for more plumbing aspects on enclosed, and not so much for open.

PRESSURE WASHING TRAILER EQUIPMENT

We have the 9 gallon per minute MAD MAX as well as the 10 gallon per minute KINGSLINGER soft wash system.  I do not recommend the 12 volt electric pumps because there are too many things that can go wrong with those such as electrical components, wiring and so forth.  I’ve used and tested all types of machines and always find that air diaphragm pumps are the most reliable and easy to use and maintain.  Storage bins are great for guns, wands, buckets, cleaning solutions and so forth.

TRAILER SIGNAGE

One of the things we incorporate into the PRESSURE WASHING TRAILER is a moving billboard on both sides.  This helps to advertise your service and provides immediate contact information for anyone who sees it and is interested.  We recommend keeping the information simple and easy to read and see as potential customers get a screen shot or copy the information.  An easy access ladder rack is part of the billboard system.  In this case, you don’t have to have a ladder to get to the ladder!

Pressure Washing Trailer

 

REELS, HOSE, TANKS

Additional pressure washing trailer equipment includes reels, hose and tanks.  Our titan reel features a garden hose on the bottom and a pressure hose on top.  An electric reel is an option.  Two 85 gallon vented tanks hold bleach and water and are connected to the Kingslinger.  We do not see any need to ever meter soap, so we simply add it to the bleach tank as needed.  And finally, we have a schertz box down stream remote system and a 24 inch “little big guy” surface cleaner.  As you consider your equipment set up, I’ve got some deals here worth taking a look at as well.

 

by Doug Rucker Doug Rucker

COMMERCIAL PRESSURE WASHING SETUP

COMMERCIAL PRESSURE WASHING SETUP

One thing that every job must have is some sort of water source.  Either it’s on the property, or you’re hauling the water.  Recently we overcame a few challenges getting water on large commercial property.  So this commercial pressure washing setup post and video will help other pressure washing professionals do the same.

THREE IMPORTANT  CONSIDERATIONS

First, what are your water source locations?  Second, how much water pressure flow volume are able to get from each location?  Third, what is the distance from the water sources to the cleaning areas?  The answers to these questions help determine how you set up for commercial jobs.  This will help determine the ideal setup location based on how many times will you need to move setup in order to keep cleaning.  As you examine water sources, check for leaks and let the owner know about those issues.

commercial pressure washing setup

 

 

 

 

 

TOOLS NEEDED

One important tool to possess for commercial pressure washing setup is a water key.  A four way sillcock key is another term for this tool that opens enclosed water sources on many commercial properties.  But these are usually available at home improvement stores or hardware stores in plumbing.  You really need to watch the entire video to gain more practical information for commercial pressure washing setup.  The video provides an aerial schematic of the various water flow options along with back flow.  These can be difficult to locate on commercial properties.  If you are new to the pressure washing industry in need of a website, consider this!

For more tips and tricks on commercial pressure washing, check out this video.

by Doug Rucker Doug Rucker

FIRING CUSTOMERS

FIRING CUSTOMERS

Have you ever had to fire a customer?  If you’re just starting out in the pressure washing business, FIRING CUSTOMERS might sound like bad advice at first.  It is somewhat of an oxymoron like jumbo shrimp, small crowd, walking dead or act naturally.  There is no doubt that most customers are good customers and a few are just average.  But there are those rare cases the best thing you can do to grow your business is “man up” and fire a customer!  So why fire a customer?  I’m glad you asked!  I’m going to give you six reasons for firing customers in the video and summarize three of them here.

HIGH DEMANDS

Some customers simply expect too much.  They demand service before we’re able to get there because previous jobs are already on the schedule.  They may have unrealistic expectations about how clean you can get it.  Some customers want everything for nothing.  When a customer is overly emotional about pricing from the very start, it’s a good sign you’ll have more issues if you take on their business.

SLOW TO MAKE PAYMENT

Some customers drag their feet when it comes time to pay.  This disruption in cash flow hurts your business.  In some cases, it’s intentional and they hope you’ll forget and leave them alone.  We do think it’s important for businesses to keep current with the latest payment method trends.

Firing Customers

THEY TALK MORE THAN THEY LISTEN

Remember that you are the professional in the exterior cleaning industry.  It never ceases to amaze me when a customer wants to argue with their three hours worth of internet research against my 30 years of experience.  There will always be those customers who simply won’t listen to you.  They think they know better and try to give you and education in your field of expertise.  The worst part is when you did it the way requested, but you knew it would not work, and it didn’t!  In the book Lifestorming, they recommend firing the bottom 10-15% of your customer base every two years!  Consider the metaphor of pruning plants.  Sometimes the best thing you can do is clear out the dead wood to make room for more growth!

Enjoy this great brief article about firing customers!     Also, check out some our recent graduates from my online pressure cleaning school!

 

by Doug Rucker Doug Rucker

PRESSURE WASH TRUCK

PRESSURE WASH TRUCK

At Doug Rucker Store, we provide PRESSURE WASH TRUCK and trailer build service.  This is especially helpful for those just starting out in the pressure washing business.  We recently had an opportunity to provide this service for a  pressure washing pro from Austin, Texas.  They purchased a previously city owned vehicle and brought it to us for the build out.  We did make some minor repairs and improvements to the enclosed portion of the truck before installing equipment. This included things like patching holes, installing new aluminum flooring, and sealing all surfaces. This phase is important to ensure maximum protection of new equipment.

 

 

SOFT WASH WITH KINGSLINGER

First, the KINGSLINGER SOFT WASH SYSTEM goes in with plumbing through the floor.  This is because the unit needs to be drained to keep moisture from building up and adversely affecting the system.  When considering a pressure wash truck or trailer build, this is a great way to provide soft wash service.  Soft washing is critical to protect a variety of surfaces from damage resulting from large volume of high pressure water blasting.  It has three different valves to meter mix ratios, usually water, bleach and another detergent.

 

ADDITONAL PRESSURE WASH EQUIPMENT

This particular project was for an existing car detail business that was expanding their service into the pressure washing sector.  So for this pressure wash truck build, we provide him with a new pressure washer also plumbed to an 85 gallon space saving tank.  In fact, two new tanks enable him to store water and bleach.  They are bolted down and firmly secure.  The schertz box remote control for down streaming and a new surface cleaner is also part of this package.  In addition, hoses and hose reels are a great addition to this pressure wash truck build.  It’s important to have pressure hose, soft wash hose, and a garden hose.  For larger projects, you would also want to consider spare hose in order to effectively clean without having to relocate equipment.  If it interests you, check out another post.  The sled is what makes this one really special!

pressure wash truck

by Doug Rucker Doug Rucker

SURFACE CLEANER VIDEO

SURFACE CLEANER VIDEO

If you need SURFACE CLEANER VIDEO TIPS, you’ve come to the right place!  I use  a Hurricane 4 Gallon Per Minute Pressure Washer, which is a great starter unit.  There are many surface cleaners to choose from, but the one I use is the Whisper Wash Ultra.  This is a sixteen inch deck.  There are many considerations to work through such as size, nozzles, and personal preferences.

FORMULA FOR SIZE CHOICE

Here is the standard industry procedure for calculating surface cleaner size with the pressure washer machine.  For every 4 gallons per minute on your machine, you need 4 inches of surface cleaner size.  So my 4 Gallon Per Minute machine multiplied by four equals a 16 inch surface cleaner.  5 Gallons Per Minute would mean use a 20 inch surface cleaner and so forth.  Of these surface cleaner tips, this is most important remember as you evaluate which model to purchase.  If you’re surface cleaner is elevating off the surface, you are using way too much pressure.  While some suggest weighing it down with a brick or something similar, I take a different approach.  Using too much pressure with a surface cleaner can cause damage to the concrete.

SURFACE CLEANER NOZZLE OPTIONS

Most surface cleaners come with some nozzles included.  2502 is the most common nozzle size.  The 25 indicates the spray pattern and the 02 reflects gallons per minute.  I go over some other important mathematical considerations relating to surface cleaner nozzles.  Be sure and watch the entire video for all the details.  But here is the approach I take when the surface cleaner pressure washer is too high. Basically, I switch out the nozzles and find the one that works most appropriately.  The 2503 was the ideal nozzle for this particular combination.  It’s good to get the nozzle that is the perfect fit for your pressure washer.  But it’s also good to have a couple nozzle options that are right above and right below that threshold.  The surface you are cleaning will also factor into this decision.  Here are some other great helpful videos for professional pressure washing equipment maintenance. I also provide monthly training events here in Houston, Texas.  And if you have a pressure washer that won’t start, check this out.

surface cleaner tips

by Doug Rucker Doug Rucker

BEST PRESSURE WASHING TRAILER BUILD

BEST PRESSURE WASHING TRAILER BUILD

Recently in Houston, we had the opportunity to provide the BEST PRESSURE WASHING TRAILER BUILD for a local company.  This local roofing company was desiring to add to their services roof installation and repair.  Thus, with this BEST PRESSURE WASHING TRAILER BUILD addition, they are now able to offer roof cleaning and complete pressure washing to the services they offer.  So this will empower them to increase the revenue they generate on many jobs, making them more profitable.  We can assure this investment will provide a high rate of return for their business.

EQUIPMENT INCLUDED

The equipment in this BEST PRESSURE WASHING TRAILER BUILD is the exact same equipment that we use and train our students on.  As newcomers enter this industry, this trailer build is a great goal to have for the future as your business grows.  First, there is the 9 gallon per minute mad max cold water pressure washer.  Then there is the whisper wash little big guy 24 inch surface cleaner.  The tank is a 225 gallon water tank plumbed to the pressure washer.  We use the banjo connector in the event you need water for any reason, which occurs often.  It also comes in very handy when the need arises to drain the tank.  The trailer itself is a 12 foot enclosed trailer.  The trailer has a ramp and we sealed the flooring for longevity.  Other equipment items included is the stack reel for three hoses, the KingSlinger Soft Wash System, and the Dougenator mixing station.  There is also a bypass downstream injector and of course, the pressure washing guns.

MONTLY TRAINING

We provide monthly training events and encourage you to click here for details for the next scheduled class.  If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to reach out!  Call 281-957-2851 or send us an email PressureCleaningSchool@gmail.com.