Sometimes it seems like people are forgetting the little guy, it looks like all the pressure washer manufacturers are competing with one another over who can create the most powerful unit, completely ignoring that some people want something small and compact.
A pressure washer designed for simple cleaning.
Fortunately, there are a few brands that have noticed this need, and I’ve put these to the test to find the best portable pressure washer.
I’ve put together a list of portable pressure washer reviews, and you may be shocked to know that you can get a handy power washer that weighs less than 10 pounds, or that you can pick one up for under a hundred dollars (at the time of writing).
In these reviews, I’ll show you the best and worst traits and provide my honest and unbiased opinion, I’ve also prepared my buyers guide to ensure that you get the best mini power washer for your needs.
Best Portable Pressure Washer Reviews
- VERSATILE: Ideal for light to medium duty cleaning jobs including auto, deck, concrete, pavers, dock, boat, cabin, porch, patio, windows, siding, driveway and more!
- ADJUSTABLE PRESSURE: Adjustable spray wand with twist nozzle easily controls water pressure to handle the task at hand
- POWERFUL MOTOR: Powerful 11. 5-amp motor generates 1450 PSI of maximum water pressure and a maximum flow rate of 1. 45 GPM
What can I say? Small, tick, handy, tick, powerful… tick. This compact pressure washer produces 1450 pounds per square inch (PSI) water pressure output at 1.45 gallons per minute (GPM), this gives this unit a cleaning power (CP) of 2102.
For such a small handheld unit, this product Is bursting with power, you usually expect a small pressure washer to handle light cleaning only. Still, this Sun Joe will handle not only light-duty cleaning but will also take on some medium-duty tasks, yup those dirtier surfaces will be a thing of the past.
This is an electrical power washer, and it comes with a long power cord, coming in at 35 feet long. This is more than enough to do all the regular cleaning around your home.
If you need to wash dirt and mud from your porch, then this little fella is great. It’ll also handle your house siding, patio, car and even some of the more built-up dirt such as wilful moss and muck.
Due to how light it is you’ll be picking this up with ease, It’s only 11.7 pounds.
This mini pressure washer comes with the Sun Joe total stop system (TSS), and the trigger has a safety lock that will keep you from accidentally using the spray gun. This is a really cheap… I mean reasonably priced and it really does just simplify the cleaning process.
It is made from plastic parts, but for the price and it’s weight, that’s to be expected.
- It has an adjustable spray nozzle and a 33-inch spray wand. You’ll reach all surfaces while being a safe distance from the water stream.
- There’s a 2-year warranty
- A very affordable price
- While this is a very handy little unit, assembly is required, make sure to get your favorite screwdriver as you’ll need it.
- The hose is made from light plastic and can leak after a few uses if not stored carefully
- The O-rings are low quality and tend to fail, I suggest picking up some spares when you buy this unit
This is another small but mighty pressure washer that produces a staggering 1500 PSI at 1.2 GPM, that’s a cleaning power of 1800.
This is another small unit that’ll take on your medium-duty cleaning tasks, dirt and grime? Things of the past.
You can use this Greenworks, both standing up or laying on the ground. Whichever works best for your really.
This mini power washer also comes with a handy soap applicator so you can quickly snow foam any surface you desire, providing a nice thorough clean.
You also get two quick-connect nozzle tips that can be changed with ease since they are easily detachable.
The power cord is 35 feet in length, and this is certified by the Pressure Washers Manufacturers Association (PWMA)
As this only weighs 17 pounds, moving this unit around is incredibly easy.
- The power cord comes with additional safety mechanisms to reduce the risk of electrocution even further
- Incredibly easy to assemble, job done in a matter of minutes
- Will tackle light and medium-duty cleaning
As with all my unbiased reviews, here are the bad things.
- The hose connector that comes with the unit is low quality and is susceptible to wear and tear, ending in leaks
- The motor is very loud to start with but once warmed up it gets quieter
- No wheels, so you have to carry it around
- 12 Amp/1.3 HP Universal Motor and Tri-Axial Pump delivering 1600 PSI/1.5 GPM
This is a really powerful portable electric pressure washer by AR Blue Clean. It produces 1600 PSI at 1.58 GPM, producing a cleaning power of 2528!
What does this mean? Well, this portable washer will easily conquer even the dirtiest of surfaces and the tougher stains,
A great thing about this compact power washer is that the pump has tempered stainless steel plungers. That means that corrosion is going to be much less likely, expect a long life with this unit.
You get an easy to use spray gun and a nozzle lance, plus a detergent bottle which doubles up nicely as a spray foam cannon, a high-pressure hose and well the lance which is designed to fit the spray gun easily.
This AR Blue Clean handheld power washer has an excellent reputation for safety. It doesn’t have any wheels so you’ll have to lug it around, but that shouldn’t be a problem seeing as it only weighs 18.2 pounds.
- You get a 1-year full warranty, that’s the “bumper to bumper” warranty, anything goes wrong AR Blue Clean will get it sorted.
- The best customer service in its class
- The Total Stop System (TSS) that automatically turns off when the trigger isn’t pressed. This also reduces your electricity use.
- This packs the highest PSI and GPM of all the compact pressure washers reviews on this list.
- The parts within the motor aren’t the highest quality, but neither is the price. This has a three axial-piston wobble plate pump which is considered to not be very durable in the long run
- Short return policy of 30 days
- Overall cheap plastic feel
This produces a fair amount of power for a compact pressure washer. It easily handles all of the jobs that it’s been designed for.
This pressure washer produces 1350 PSI at 1.45GPM, giving you a cleaning power of 1957.
The Sun Joe comes with a power nozzle, which allows you to control the pressure output of this unit by simply twisting it. You also get an extension wand, a garden hose adapter and with it’s 35 foot-long power cord, you won’t have any problems reaching every part of your yard.
This is also one of the smallest pressure washers on this list weighing only 9 pounds! This is great seeing as this unit doesn’t come with any wheels so you’ll have to carry it around.
Also, it’s not the highest quality product, but it’ll get the job done for simple cleaning chores and the price does correspond directly to the quality of the product.
Though if anything does go wrong, you get a 2-year warranty.
- The adjustable spray wand is fantastic, you can use it any which way you like
- The pressure output controller lets you select the pressure strength you need, so you can switch from light to medium cleaning with a single click.
- You can tackle delicate surfaces and even those resistant patios.
- Energy-saving due to the fact the pump is turned off when not in use.
- 20 foot-long high-pressure hose powered by a 10-amp motor
- Can’t handle that heavier dirt and stains
- You can’t use a foam cannon
- Assembly can be tricky
- Powerful 40V/ 600-watt motor generates up to 1160 psi/ .79 GPM, perfect for light duty cleaning power
- Innovative, top-loading detachable 5.3 gallon bucket , detergent bottle 8.5(oz.)
- Exclusive pressure select technology: Rated pressure of 507 PSI/ 650 PSI/ 800 PSI
This pressure washer has the lowest PSI output at only 1160 PSI of all the pressure washers on this list of portable pressure washer reviews, but that doesn’t mean it won’t get the job done. It’ll get all those easy cleaning tasks does, and one amazing feature about this pressure washer is the fact it’s cordless!
That’s right; it’s a battery powered pressure washer, housing a 40-volt rechargeable battery.
This is a handy bucket pressure washer that will easily wash your car, boat, RV, decks, patios, windows, outdoor furniture, and everything else that doesn’t require that much strength.
Plus, you can take this wherever you need to go.
This portable pressure washer with a water tank lets you use the bucket for its water supply you can also connect it to a garden hose and use it just like any old regular power washer.
Due to the battery, this is a tad heavy coming in at 19.8 pounds (when the bucket’s empty). Fortunately, it comes with 4 wheels for moving it around.
- The wonderful bucket design lets you work without a steady flow of water, you bring the water supply with you.
- This cordless power washer comes with a 5 amp, 40-volt battery that you can recharge whenever you want.
- You also get 4 quick connect nozzles and a soap sprayer
- Incredibly low cleaning power of 916.4 thanks to its 1160 PSI and 0.79 GPM.
- While it has wheels moving it around rough, harder terrains like fields, construction sites are difficult
- I found it rather sneaky that the battery and charger are sold separately
Portable vs. Standard Pressure Washers
If you are stuck, wondering which to choose a portable pressure washer or one of the best electric power washers, well, this is the part of the article that’s for you.
Think about the surfaces you are looking to clean and the terrain surrounding them and the time you are willing to spend on those tasks.
If you are looking for a unit to wash your car, the windows on your home well, those can be handled by a handheld power washer.
Portable pressure washers
- light cleaning jobs that consist of refreshing the surfaces and washing away dirt and dust.
- You don’t have time to connect and wheel around heavy-duty units, especially for short and simple tasks.
- Price plays an integral part in your decision-making process. Small power washers can be found under 100 dollars, while standard units can go anywhere from several hundred dollars to over a thousand dollars.
- You don’t plan on using the unit often.
- You have a smaller surface to cover. There’s no need for a large unit to clean a small driveway or the front porch.
Standard power washers
- You need higher cleaning power, PSI, and GPM output.
- You plan on using the unit for heavy-duty cleaning and hardcore stains like garage grease and oils, track marks on the driveway, or gutters. Preparing a surface for the paint job, which needs a unit powerful enough to strip the previous paint layers.
- Terrain is hard to reach. If you need a cordless but powerful unit, you can always go with a gasoline-powered pressure washer.
- There are many different tasks you need to handle, up to medium and heavy-duty cleaning. A standard pressure washer can cover all that.
- You need hot water power washing. Small pressure washers usually offer only a cold wash.
Portable Pressure Washers Advantages And Drawbacks
The main benefit of a compact pressure washer has to be its size. Ultimately you purchase a portable pressure washer because you don’t want to be lugging around the size and weight of a standard pressure washer.
These small compact units weight from 9 to 20 pounds. But a standard unit will weigh anywhere from 30 to 60 pounds.
Mobility isn’t an issue with these units, especially for light cleaning tasks. You’ll have the job done before you’ve set up the standard or heavy-duty units, which is why many people invest in a portable handheld pressure washer alongside their standard units.
They use their larger, more powerful units for those heavy stains and large cleaning jobs. Lighter cleaning tasks are left to their handheld cousins. Once you’ve got hooked to using one of the most powerful electric pressure washers from my reviews, you don’t want to use a simple garden hose ever again.
The benefits of a portable pressure washer are even more evident if you buy a rechargeable, cordless unit. This is perfect for cleaning boats, cars, and those smaller yards and patios, you can also keep your garden furniture looking like new.
No cords, no power outlets, so if for some reason you cannot plug in either electricity or water supply, this isn’t a problem for a canister pressure washer, your standard unit would be sat there gathering dust.
Also, a small water pressure output means that you will be getting the job done without spending too much on your electricity bill.
There’s aren’t too many. To be honest, the main downside is the small PSI and GPM, which also means a low cleaning power.
Also, these units tend to come with a shorter warranty.
What Can You Clean With A Portable Power Washer?
There are many uses for your portable pressure washer. If you are using it for it’s intended purpose, then it’s the ultimate cleaning device for a variety of surfaces.
If you’ve grown tired of all the hassle that you have to go through when you are cleaning your patio or driveway or well any of your outdoor furniture, then a portable pressure washer is the solution to your problem.
A handheld pressure washer will clean your fences and your vehicle. You don’t want to spend all day cleaning your outdoors, thankfully a handheld option will get the job done in no time. No more scrubbing pine cones and needles off of the patio.
Dogs leaving a mess on your concrete? Them the high-pressure stream from your compact washer will get rid of this muck. A good pressure washer will clear out mildew, fungus and stains from almost any surface.
Portable Pressure Washer Buying Guide
PSI and GPM
Pounds per square inch is the number that signifies the strength of the water pressure stream and the gallons per minute how much water is flowing under that pressure. Take these numbers and multiply them, and you get the cleaning power.
It’s always nice when you get a soap dispenser/snow foam cannon included with yours. Especially if you want a thorough clean, as the snow foam detergent just breaks down dirt and grime.
If your washer is a portable handheld one, then I feel a soap dispenser is a must-have, you need the added help from a soap or detergent to help break down those tougher stains and dirt.
Other additional equipment for handheld pressure washers you can consider are an extendable hose, different nozzles, cleaning brushes, and various add-ons.
If you know that you will need a soap sprayer, it’s better when it already comes with one – that way, you know for sure the item will fit. If something happens, or if it doesn’t work as promised, you can always use your warranty.
If you buy additional equipment, you should stick with the same manufacturer. Sun Joe’s soap dispenser may not work on the Greenworks pressure washer, etc. and if anything goes wrong, you won’t have any warranty issues.
Will you always have access to a power source and water supply? Do you need a rechargeable battery? A compact washer may give you the option of using a rechargeable battery and also holding its own water.
If, for example, you already know you need a soap sprayer, it’s better to buy a one that already comes with one – that way, you know for sure the item will fit. If something happens, or if it doesn’t work as promised, you can always invoke your warranty.
You can hardly use that warranty if you buy two items from different manufacturers, even if the connector is standard. Also, if you have to purchase additional equipment, this is the reason why you should stick with the same manufacturer. Sun Joe’s soap dispenser may not work on the Greenworks version, etc.
Think in advance for what purposes you need a small pressure washer, other than it’s handy. Will you always connect it to the power source and water supply? Do you need a rechargeable battery or simple electricity? Think wisely and make your decision.
Are you looking for something to last you a season or two, or are you looking for a durable unit? Small electric pressure washers aren’t built to withstand many years of use.
That is why manufacturers make these units mainly from low-quality plastic parts that can withstand low usage, and naturally, price them quite low compared to the standard units. Every component used in these compact units is chosen based on several qualities –price and weight.
Take warranty into consideration, these units aren’t built for frequent use. That means that any excessive use will affect their lifetime, and you need a good warranty to cover your bases.
Pick a product that you can comfortably carry around. It makes no sense to buy a heavy handheld power washer unless it comes with wheels.
FAQ About Compact Pressure Washers
What Kind Of Detergent Should I Use And How?
First, you need to check if your compact unit comes with a soap or detergent tank. If there isn’t one included, see if you can buy one as an accessory. Some of these mini power washers don’t have an option for a soap dispenser, so for those, this is a moot point.
It isn’t a surprise that most electric pressure washers have their own detergents, though you can always buy similar (or the same) brands at the supermarket.
Make sure to choose the right detergent for the job, select a floor cleaning detergent for floors, vehicle cleaner for cars, siding for your wall etc, etc.
How Often Will You Use Your Power Washer?
If all you intend is to do small cleaning tasks once a week, then investing in a compact but a sturdier unit with a prolonged warranty is a better choice. However, if you plan to do the occasional bit of cleaning, then a small compact unit will fit your needs perfectly.
Is 1500 PSI Enough To Power Wash A Deck?
Yes, 1500 Psi is more than enough power to power wash a deck. Actually, 1500 PSI can damage softwood and leave marks, so be careful.
Fortunately, many of these portable washers have PSI lower than 1500 PSI.
To Wheel Or Not To Wheel?
All of the washers on this list are small compact units that are very easily moved around.
However, even though these are small, some still come with wheels, so while you can carry them around, you can wheel them about should you need to. But as these weigh less than 20 pounds wheeling shouldn’t be required.
How Much PSI You Need to Clean the Car?
Anything with at least 700 PSI is enough power to wash your car, in fact, more than enough to do a touchless car wash. It won’t leave dents and you won’t have to worry about your paint being stripped off.
All the washers on this list are perfect for washing your car.
How Much PSI You Need To Clean the Driveway?
Cleaning concrete can require a bit more PSI for a thorough clean. Some people claim that you need at least 3000 PSI, which doesn’t make sense to me as you can damage concrete with 2500 PSI pressure washers.
The question, though is, what are you trying to clean off of your concrete driveway? 1000 PSI pressure washers will quickly clean up fallen leaves and pine cones. If it comes with a soap dispenser, that’ll make easy work of those greasy stains.
Regular driveway cleaning can be achieved with these small compact units. Still, if you are dealing with a large driveway, then you’ll be best advised to use standard pressure washers, perhaps one from my list of electric pressure washers.
Is 1500 PSI Enough For Regular Household Chores?
100%, these small power washers provide more than enough PSI for cleaning patios, outdoor furniture, stairs, sidewalks, cars, boats, etc. The same goes for dirt and dust removal. Depending on the severity of the stain, the crustiness of dirt, mud, and muck, these units are great for small cleaning jobs, while some with larger PSI and GPM can tackle medium chores.
How Far from the Surface Should I Hold the Nozzle?
As with all pressure washers, this entirely depends on the surface you are cleaning and the PSI of the machine.
The impact of the water jet is larger if you hold the nozzle nearer the surface. But pay attention because if you use a high powered unit with a large PSI and GPM, the water blast can hurt you, so wear overalls and footwear with rubber insoles.
As far as cleaning is concerned, cleaning a second story with a powerful water blast is not the same if you direct it to your wooden furniture. So please read the manual carefully to see which surfaces can be cleaned with the specific pressure output and which nozzle you should use.
Hand-Held Pressure Washer Comparison Chart
|PRODUCT||POWER SOURCE||WEIGHT (POUNDS)||DIMENSIONS (INCHES)||PSI||GPM||CLEANING POWER|
|Sun Joe SPX1000||Electric||11.7||12 x 9.8 x 19||1450||1.45||2102|
|Greenworks GPW1501||Electric||17||11.4 x 17.1 x 9.4||1500||1.2||1800|
|AR Blue Clean AR112||Electric||18.2||7.5 x 10 x 18||1600||1.58||2528|
|Sun Joe SPX200E||Electric||9.15||7.6 x 6.7 x 13.5||1350||1.45||1957|
|Sun Joe SPX6000C||Cordless, Electric or Batteries||19.8||17.5 x 16.5 x 18||1160||0.79||916|
When you think about the benefits that a best portable pressure washer can bring, it obvious to adding one to your home is a must. I keep one in my car for blasting my kid’s bikes down after a messy bike ride.
Having a unit stored at home or at a vacation house just makes sense to me, Imagine not visiting your property for quite some time, it’ll look tired and dirty in that your best ally can be a handheld pressure washer. We are talking about hours of cleaning time reduced to mere minutes.
So, the conclusion is that it’s a good thing to have to lay around the house if you aren’t an avid cleaner that will use it every day. All power washers we described above are convenient, easily carried, and still pack enough power for some serious (but light) cleaning. For other types check here
if you have any questions about cleaning with small power washers, need tips or tricks, or simply you think there’s a certain option that has to be on this portable pressure washers list – please feel free to share in the comment section below.