An electric pressure washer is a great piece of equipment to have because it produces dramatic cleaning results. It can quickly and safely strip grime and goo from patio furniture, decks, the siding on a house, or wash a muddy vehicle. Cleanup jobs that take a lot of time and elbow grease with a scrub brush and a garden hose are achievable in minutes with a pressure washer.
Pressure washers use pumps and engines to amplify water pressure, turning your garden hose into a high-powered cleaning machine. There are two general types of pressure washers: electric and gasoline-powered.
The best electric pressure washer models can tackle many of the same jobs as the gasoline-powered units used by professionals. But electric pressure washers are generally more affordable, lighter, quieter, and easier to store and maintain.
There are many electric pressure washers on the market with a wide range of features. To help you pick the best electric pressure washer for you, this guide includes a list of top performers for your consideration.
- BEST OVERALL: Briggs & Stratton 020681 El Washer
- RUNNER UP: Stanley SHP2150 Electric Pressure Washer
- BEST FOR BEGINNERS: Greenworks PW-1800 Electric Pressure Washer
- BEST PORTABLE: WEN PW19 Electric Pressure Washer
- MOST VERSATILE: Westinghouse ePX3000 Electric Pressure Washer
- ALSO CONSIDER: WHOLESUN Electric Pressure Washer
What to Consider When Choosing the Best Electric Pressure Washer
Keep the following factors in mind while shopping to find a pressure washer you can use for years to come.
The power of a pressure washer is gauged by a combination of two measurements—pounds per square inch (PSI) and gallons per minute (GPM).
PSI indicates the water pressure delivered by the machine. The higher the PSI, the more powerful the pressure washer and the more effective it will be at cleaning deep stains. Electric pressure washers typically range between 1,500 and 2,500 PSI. A machine with a lower PSI rating can do almost any job a more powerful machine can do, but a higher-PSI machine can do the job faster.
GPM measures the volume of water delivered by the pressure washer. This rating, in tandem with the tool’s PSI rating, indicates how fast the machine will be able to clean. Higher-GPM electric pressure washers are more powerful and will clean faster than models with lower GPM.
The hose length necessary has a lot to do with the task at hand. Pressure-washing a full-size pickup truck might require a 25-foot hose, while cleaning the top side of backyard deck might require half as much length. Extra hose length increases the tool’s range of use but can be a hassle if not needed for the type of jobs you typically take on.
There are two main types of pumps used in pressure washers: axial and triplex. Most electric pressure washers have an axial pump. Axial pumps are maintenance-free. That is, you don’t have to change their oil.
However, you can’t rebuild an axial pump or change its seals or valves like you can with a triplex. Once an axial pump fails, you have to buy a new pump or replace the entire pressure washer.
Most pressure washers come with replaceable nozzles that fit onto the tip of the wand, so you can customize the water stream’s angle or intensity. Nozzles are measured in angles ranging from zero to 40 degrees. The higher the angle, the lower the water pressure.
You might use a 40-degree nozzle to wash a car or the siding on your house, a 25-degree nozzle for general tasks, and a zero-degree nozzle for the toughest cleaning jobs, such as getting an oil stain out of a driveway.
Ease of Use
An electric pressure washer is easier to use than a gasoline pressure washer. An electric model doesn’t need oil changes, spark plugs, or throttle adjustments—and it doesn’t require a tricky pull-start, either. You just hook up the hose and flip a switch to turn the machine on. Electric pressure washers are also a lot quieter than gasoline-powered pressure washers.
Another ease-of-use consideration: Look for an electric pressure washer with quick-connect fittings for nozzles and hoses. These spring-loaded fittings snap on and off quickly and easily—no wrench needed.
Electric pressure washers are smaller and lighter than gasoline-powered models. Some electric pressure washers aren’t much larger than a cooler and are easy to store.
It’s a good idea to pick an electric power washer that balances power with portability. Generally, the more powerful the pressure washer, the heavier it is. The ideal model is light enough to move around your yard or house while still being able to provide the power you need to get the job done.
Our Top Picks
Portability, size, power, cord length, and accessories are the features that distinguish the best electric pressure washers from the rest.
Briggs & Stratton’s El Washer has a lot of desirable features, including 2,000 PSI of power and a water flow rate of 1.2 GPM that can handle most cleaning jobs. It comes with four quick-connect tips: a 15-degree nozzle, 25-degree nozzle, turbo nozzle, and soap nozzle giving you a range of spray patterns and cleaning angles to handle a variety of jobs.
The washer has a 25-foot long hose and a 35-foot long power cord, allowing you to clean items up to 60 feet away from a power source. It has an onboard detergent tank and a sturdy steel frame. When you’re through cleaning, the pressure washer folds up so you can store it under a workbench or in a shed.
You don’t always need the heaviest hitter to get the job done. The Stanley SHP2150 has 2,150 PSI and a water flow of 1.4 GPM, enough power to clean vehicles or a dirty deck. The washer weighs just over 25 pounds so it’s still lightweight for easy transport. It has a 25-foot long hose and a 35-foot power cord and a detergent bottle.
The Stanley comes with four quick-connect nozzles in angles ranging from zero to 40 degrees, so you can match the water pressure and stream to the task. This washer also has a high-pressure foamer cannon that’s good for soaping a vehicle or dirty patio chairs.
The Greenworks PW 1800 Electric Pressure Washer is a good choice for tackling lighter projects around the house. This machine produces up to 1,800 PSI and has a water flow rate of 1.1 GPM, enough power for cleaning boats, patios or siding.
The washer comes with three quick-connect tips in varying angles and a soap nozzle, an onboard soap tank, a 35-foot power cord and a 20-foot hose. The long hose and cord let you reach jobs a long way from an electrical outlet. It has a rack that holds the nozzles, a nice feature that keeps them close at hand and organized.
The WEN PW19 has up to 2,000 PSI with a water flow of 1.6 GPM—enough power to clean a deck or the siding on your house. It’s just under 16 inches tall, 12 inches wide, and weighs just 14 pounds—about the size and weight of a small cooler full of ice—so it’s easy to move around.
This WEN pressure washer has a 36-foot long power cord and a 16.5-foot hose, so it can clean objects that are relatively far from an electrical outlet. This model includes a built-in nozzle adjustment to adjust the angle and pressure of its spray, plus a detachable soap tank.
The Westinghouse ePX3000 pressure washer packs 2,030 PSI and has a water flow rate of 1.76 GPM, so it can handle cleanup jobs ranging from light tasks like cleaning cars to heavier tasks such as desliming sidewalks. The washer has four wheels that rotate 360 degrees, so it can turn on a dime and is easy to maneuver as you work.
At just under 17 inches tall, it has a low center of gravity, making it hard to tip over. The Westinghouse ePX3000 comes with four nozzles and a soap applicator, with a 15-foot hose and an onboard soap tank so you can pump up the cleaning power on your tasks.
Scraping away loose paint chips is a time-consuming chore. Next time, blast them away with a WHOLESUN pressure washer that generates up to 3,000 psi of water pressure and a 2.4 GPM flow rate.
As the unit comes with a long 33-foot power cord and a 20-foot high-pressure hose, the tool provides its users with plenty of reach, not least because it has a removable wand. The washer also includes four quick-connect nozzles, a detergent dispenser, and a built-in reel for hose storage.
FAQs About Your New Electric Pressure Washer
If you still have questions about how to use an electric pressure washer or how to care for one, read on.
Q. How do you use an electric pressure washer?
Using an electric pressure washer is straightforward:
- Choose the least aggressive nozzle that will get the job done and install it in the wand of the pressure washer.
- Attach your garden hose to your outside faucet and to the inlet on your pressure washer.
- Plug the pressure washer into an outlet.
- Turn the machine on.
- Squeeze the trigger to spray.
Pressure washers are powerful enough to cut or hurt you. When using a pressure washer, wear safety glasses and closed-toe shoes. Also, keep your hands away from the end of the wand, and don’t point the nozzle at anyone.
Q. How do you winterize an electric pressure washer?
At the end of the season, drain all remaining water from the pump and hose of the pressure washer, and pump a mixture of antifreeze and lubricant through the system. You can buy a pre-mixed pump-specific solution for the job. Note that many electric pressure washers are small enough to be stored indoors and won’t need winterizing.
Q. Why does my electric pressure washer keep shutting off?
When you turn on the pressure washer for the first time, it will run to prime the pump and pressurize the system. It will stop running when it’s pressurized. It will begin running again when you pull the trigger.