Pressure Washing Resources

Commercial Power Washing

Helpful Pressure Washing Industry Resources


Links to Other Power Wash Pages

ACME Powerwash - A pressure washing company website with lots of information about pressure washing in Phoenix and tons of photos of pressure washers in action. The site also has information about street sweeping services and floor coatings such as epoxy, stain, and sealers.

Official ACME Blog - The official ACME Powerwash Blog where you can read about recent pressure washing projects and stay current on industry news.

Pressure Washing in Phoenix - Another informative website where you can get information about pressure washing services in the Phoenix area.

Phoenix Paver Sealing - Got Pavers? This website is a great resource for information and before/after photos of pavers. You can see what your pavers might look like after having them professionally cleaned and sealed by an experienced pressure washing company.

We use these search engines: Google, Yahoo, bing.


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Articles About Pressure Washing

All articles listed are original content produced by ACME Powerwash management and employees. Articles may be used as long as they are used in entirety and contain the original copyright notice (Copyright © 2007 - 2010 ACME Powerwash) with a link to this website. For other usage terms and conditions please contact ACME Powerwash.


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Power Washing Companies: How to Choose from the Good, the Bad and the Ugly

So... you have a mess. A big mess. You need the help of a mobile pressure washing service but you don't know where to start. Don't worry, you are not alone. Most people don't know anything about power washing until it is time to hire a company to help them clean up the mess. The three most important factors to consider when hiring a power wash company are their equipment, experience, and professionalism.

The equipment used by a power wash company is paramount to the quality of service they will be able to provide. Good pressure washers use industrial machines that are capable of producing steam and hot water over 250°F (121°C) and 3,000psi. Heat is the key to effective pressure washing. Bad pressure washers skimp on their equipment to keep costs down, but you ultimately pay the price. They will have to spend more time on the same area and/or use harmful (and expensive) chemicals to get the same results as a "good" company. Ugly pressure washers use consumer or light-commercial grade cold-water machines with improper accessories. They can cause serious damage to your property and should be avoided at all costs.

Shiny, high-tech equipment alone will not clean up your mess. It needs to be put in the hands of a trained and experienced technician. Due to the poor economy and the relatively low start-up costs, new companies show up all the time. A good company, however, will have at least several years of experience. Many power wash companies have been in the industry for over 10 years with a proven track record backed up by references, before & after photos, and a high rating with the local Better Business Bureau. Bad companies will use unqualified, inexperienced, or undocumented workers to save money. Again, you pay the price with poor quality or property damage (3000 pounds per square inch can do a lot of damage if not properly handled). Ugly companies pay sub-standard wages to undocumented workers "hired" from the parking lot of the local hardware store that have never operated a pressure washer before. Again, irreparable damage is highly possible.

The final consideration when choosing a good power washing service is their level of professionalism. Good companies respond quickly to your requests and have excellent verbal and written communication skills. A professional company will be able to accept credit cards as a method of payment. Contractor licenses are not typically required, but the organization should be in good standing with the state's corporation commission and carry general liability, commercial automobile, and workers compensation insurance. Good companies will happily provide you with certificates of insurance as proof of their coverage to give you peace of mind. Bad companies use pushy sales techniques to make up for their lack of professionalism, will have little or no insurance, and be unorganized and difficult to deal with. Ugly companies are not insured, impossible to communicate with, and will likely disappear once paid or at the first hint of your dissatisfaction.

To find the good power wash services out there, search the Internet or your local business directory and invite 3 or more companies to provide you with an estimate. Good power washers will be happy to provide you with a free estimate. Depending on the size of your project you might be able to get a quote over phone, but larger projects typically require an on-site visit. This allows a good power wash company to give you the most accurate estimate possible and gives you an opportunity to examine their equipment, experience, and professionalism first hand. When you have accumulated all your estimates, use what you have learned here to choose the most qualified company for your particular project.

Copyright © 2007 - 2012 ACME Powerwash


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Common Pressure Washing Injuries and How to Avoid Them

Many people underestimate the power of a pressure washer. Serious and even fatal injuries can result when using pressure washers improperly or if basic safety measures are ignored. The two main types of pressure washing machines are electric and gas. Electric machines emit water at pressures exceeding 1,000 pounds per square inch (PSI). Many gas pressure washers exceed 2.000 PSI and are capable of reaching pressures as high as 4,000 PSI on industrial units. Higher pressure is obviously a faster and more effective cleaning tool... but with the greater pressure, comes the greater chance for serious injury.

Serious injuries from a pressure washer may include abrasions, slips and falls, blindness, and high-pressure injection. The sheer pressure of water alone is powerful enough to cause an injury, but using chemicals during the cleaning process can make a bad situation even worse. Injuries and wounds sustained while pressure washing can appear deceptively benign but should always be examined and treated by a doctor or qualified emergency care provider.

Abrasions are a common injury associated with pressure washing. To reduce the risk of getting abrasions, wear protective clothing including gloves, closed shoes and long pants. Avoid pointing the pressure washer at yourself, other people and pets. Do not depress the trigger until you are sure of where the gun is pointing and use care not to spray your hands, feet or legs.

Slips and falls can lead to hospitalization or death. Wet surfaces will be more slippery and ice can form rapidly in cold climates. Using a pressure washer on a ladder or other elevated surface is dangerous due to the backward force of a pressure washing gun, which can easily throw a person off balance. Understand your work area and how water will affect the surface. Use appropriate safety harnesses when operating a pressure washer from a ladder, lift, or crane.

Blindness and other eye injuries can occur not only from being sprayed directly in the eye, but from foreign objects or chemicals flying through the air. The power of water at high pressure can send rocks, nails, glass, and other harmful debris hurtling through the air at damaging speeds. Chemicals and detergents can also splash up from the surface. Always wear shock resistant and splash resistant safety glasses or goggles when operating a pressure washer. In the event of a chemical-related eye injury, seek immediate medical help and be sure to take the Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS) or label explaining the chemical's properties for the physicians' review.

High-pressure injection (HPI) occurs when water and other debris/chemical penetrates the skin and causes deep tissue damage. Serious infections are highly likely with HPI and may ultimately lead to permanent disability or amputation of the affected body parts. To lessen the risk of HPI, use wide angle or fan nozzles to disburse the pressure over a wider area. Solid stream nozzles can do more harm and should be avoided whenever possible. As with abrasions, wear protective clothing and never point the pressure washer at yourself or another person.

Special concerns for each specific type of pressure washer should also be considered. With electric pressure washers (as with any electrical tool around water) there is the risk of electric shock. Use of gas-powered pressure washers can lead to asphyxiation by carbon monoxide inhalation when used without proper ventilation. Gas units are also loud and may result in hearing loss - hearing protection should be worn at all times. Misuse of hot-water and steam pressure washers may result in serious burns that could likely require medical attention. When operating any pressure washer be sure to read and understand its operation manual, paying special attention to all safety precautions.

Do not be one of the thousands of individuals each year that underestimate the power of a pressure washer and ultimately require hospitalization for their injuries. Give the machine the respect it deserves and use necessary safety measures for each particular situation. If you have any doubts about operating a machine, consider hiring a mobile pressure washing service to complete your project. A quick Internet search for "pressure washing in (your city)" will likely result in dozens of professional companies that would be happy to give you a free estimate.

For instance, a search for "Pressure Washing in Phoenix" will bring up http://www.acmepowerwash.com where you can learn more about pressure washing, see photos of industrial pressure washers in action, or request a free estimate from a professional pressure washing company with over 13 years of industry experience.

Copyright © 2007 - 2012 ACME Powerwash


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"Pressure Washer" vs. "Power Washer"

You have probably already learned that "power" is synonymous with "pressure" when searching for information about high-pressure cleaning equipment and services. What you may not know is that one of these terms is more commonly used than the other. This can be relevant to businesses for their online marketing campaigns and to consumers in their search for information.

On average, in the United States, the term "pressure washer" is approximately three times more likely to be searched for on the internet than "power washer". So, if your business is only using the term "power" on its website, blog, online store, and pay-per-click program, it is likely missing out on 75% of searchers and potential buyers. Companies wanting to reach the majority of these people with a minimum amount of work should market their cleaning equipment and services using the term "pressure". Ideally though, the optimal marketing campaign would target both terms to ensure the organization is reaching all consumers searching for pressure (or power) related cleaning services and supplies.

While this is true of the national average, companies should also research and consider the regional differences in how people search in each market. In several Southeastern states, for instance, people use the term "pressure washer" almost exclusively, with only about 1 in 10 searchers looking for a "power washer". Conversely, in some Midwestern and Northern states, the ratio of "pressure" to "power" is almost even, with roughly 6 of 10 searchers seeking "pressure washing" as opposed to 4 of 10 looking for "power washing". For a pressure washing company in Phoenix, Arizona where there is a melting pot of people from all over the nation, the ratios are more consistent with the national averages of one search for "power washers" to every 3 searches for "pressure washers".

Copyright © 2007 - 2012 ACME Powerwash


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Benefits of Sealing Concrete Pavers

Sealing a paver surface is beneficial for many reasons. First and foremost, the pavers will be protected from grease, spills, oil stains, etc. In addition to preventing stains, many sealers can dramatically improve the appearance of a home or business. A "wet" look or high-gloss sealer brings out the colors of each paver. For those individuals and companies desiring less of a visual impact there are "satin" and "natural" finishes that provide the same great protection while minimizing the changes in appearance.

Here is a quick summary of both the aesthetic and functional benefits you can expect from sealing your pavers:

  • APPEARANCE - Enhance the appearance of your hardscape with a sealer that is able to bring out and intensify the natural paver colors. In many cases, the change can be quite a dramatic improvement.
  • MAINTENANCE - Sealing pavers creates a surface that improves maintenance efforts by making it faster and easier to clean. Sealed surfaces can be wiped down with a mild detergent or pressure washed to remove any spills, dirt and debris.
  • PROTECTION - Sealed surfaces are more resistant to undesired stains such as oil, food and drink spills, etc. Some sealers also may protect against salts, acids, and other corrosive substances.
  • PRESERVATION - A UV-rated sealer will not yellow as it protects the paver colors from fading under a constant barrage of harmful sunlight.
  • STABILIZATION - Many sealers can reinforce pavement integrity by stabilizing joint sand which also deters weed growth and insect activity such as ant hills.
  • VERSATILITY - The same sealer used on your pavers can also be used on other areas in your hardscape including concrete, exposed aggregate, stone, etc.

Once your pavers are installed, sealing them is the logical next step. It protects your investment and gives them that added visual punch to really make your property stand out. Consider hiring a professional paver sealing company to complete your project. Search the Internet and visit a local professional's website to see some photos of the results they are capable of achieving.

Copyright © 2007 - 2012 ACME Powerwash


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How to Seal Concrete Pavers

Sealing a paver surface can be beneficial for many reasons. All sealers are different, but benefits may include protection, color enhancement, and possibly even joint stabilization. Sealers can protect the surface from stains, UV exposure, and harmful substances such as salt or other corrosives. A gloss, or "wet-look" finish will enhance the appearance of the paver surface, bringing out the natural colors of each paver. A joint stabilizing sealer will lock in joint sand increasing the integrity of the paver installation and deterring pests such as weeds and ant hills. Sealed pavers are also much easier to clean and maintain.

1. Begin by carefully reviewing the sealer instructions, technical bulletin, and/or Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS). Keep them nearby for reference throughout the duration of your project.

2. Gather required supplies including sealer, tools, and necessary safety equipment such as safety glasses/goggles, gloves, and respirators if applicable.

3. Use an industrial, hot-water pressure washer to steam-clean and powerwash the concrete paver surface to remove any grease, grime, stains, dirt and debris. The steam also helps open the pores of the surface ensuring a strong bond between the surface and the sealer. Use biodegradable degreasers and detergents where necessary to help remove heavy stains, oil, or efflorescence that may be present. If you don't have access to a hot-water pressure washer, consider hiring a mobile pressure washing service to ensure the cleanest surface possible.

4. For a solvent-based sealer wait until the pavers are completely dry before application and shut off any nearby sources of flame (pilot lights on gas water heaters, etc.). Some water-based sealers may be applied to a damp surface.

5. Mask off any nearby surfaces or structures that you want to prevent from being sealed.

6. Following the manufacturer's instructions, carefully use a pump sprayer or short-nap roller to evenly apply a coat of sealer to the paver surface. Coverage rates will vary greatly depending on factors such as the condition and porosity of the surface but typically range from 100 - 400 sq ft per gallon. Apply sealer liberally but be careful to not over-apply.

7. Sealer will typically be dry to the touch within an hour for foot traffic or a second coat of sealer if necessary. The freshly sealed surface should be protected from all moisture and heavy traffic for 24 to 48 hours while it cures.

8. Clean all tools and materials immediately upon completion. Water can be used to clean water-based sealers. Use Xylene or the manufacturer recommended cleaner for solvent-based sealers.

9. Follow proper maintenance instructions for the sealed surface. Pressure wash as needed, but use care not to use too much pressure which can cause damage to the surface or strip off the sealer. Depending on the severity of weather and amount of traffic, a reapplication of sealer may be desired every 3 to 5 years.

PLEASE NOTE: This list is a general overview of how to seal concrete pavers. When you choose a sealer, be sure to follow the product manufacturer's specifications for preparation, installation, and maintenance. Each sealer will have its own special considerations with respect to safety precautions, application techniques and clean-up methods.

Copyright © 2007 - 2012 ACME Powerwash


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Pressure Washing Company in Phoenix, Arizona

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