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The 6 Best Electric Pressure Washers of 2023

Jul 01, 2023Jul 01, 2023

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Got grime to get rid of? These powerful machines have you covered.

No doubt there was a time when washing your ride with a sponge and bucket of soapy water on the driveway was a fun, sunny-day activity. But fast-forward a couple of decades, and the last thing you want to do on a sunny Sunday afternoon is sweat it out on such a mundane, exhausting cleaning task.

Thankfully, electric pressure washers make tough jobs that require extra muscle—like removing gunk from your car, gear, or property—much easier. These machines attach to a garden hose and give you the power to blast dirt off surfaces that would otherwise require hours of elbow grease to tidy up. And, you don’t need to spend more than a couple hundred dollars to get in the pressure-washing game.

We put a bunch of models from trusted brands to the test to find the best electric pressure washers for home use. Scroll down for expert advice on essentials to consider before shopping, along with reviews of our top recommendations.

Electric pressure washers are best for lighter work and small jobs—figure projects that take 30 minutes max—like washing down driveways and sidewalks or gently cleaning decks, patio furniture, or aluminum siding. These handy tools can also remove debris from cars and gravel bikes as you use a light touch and a white nozzle, which has the widest spray and thus is least likely to damage delicate surfaces. (If cleaning a car is your main objective, you’re best served by a cordless pressure washer.)

Electric pressure washers have quieter motors and are easier maintain than their gas counterparts, which need oil changes, filter replacements, and yearly spark plug checks. With no fuel on board, electric pressure washers can sit indoors in winter, plus they’re easier to operate and have a convenient built-in soap tank. As for cost, electric pressure washers are generally less expensive, lighter, and better for the environment. The downside is that they aren’t as powerful and can’t handle extended use, especially in hot weather because the components can easily overheat. As a rule, electric pressure washers tap out at about 2,700 pounds per square inch (psi), with a max flow rate from 1.2 to 2.3 gallons per minute (gpm).

Because they have less power, electric pressure washers are generally safer than gas pressure washers. That said, they can still do damage if you use them incorrectly. For personal safety and to protect your stuff, always start with a green or white nozzle, which have wide spray angles to decrease the intensity of the water stream.

If one of those doesn’t do the job, use careful judgement before moving to a yellow or red nozzle, which produce narrower streams with cutting edges that may gouge more delicate surfaces. Another no-no: never use a pressure washers on anything electrical because they're sure to damage components. If this is your first time using a pressure washer, be sure to stand at a distance from whatever you’re cleaning and keep the wand moving to prevent too much force from damaging an area.

The electric pressure washers we looked at are all from reliable brands that we’ve come to trust over the years, such as DeWalt, Greenworks, Craftsman, Ryobi, and others. To inform our selections, we relied on the expertise of PopMech’s Senior Home Editor Roy Berendsohn, as he put every electric pressure washer here through his rigorous testing. That included comparing how each model washed cement and brick paving, vinyl fencing, and outdoor furniture, among other messy cleaning jobs. He also carefully washed a few cars using the safest nozzle, and considered things such as ease of use and performance in real-world scenarios to glean potential flaws and deal-breakers. Our final lineup represents the best models across categories that address different needs and budgets.

This model from Greenworks easily came out on top during past experience testing as the best overall electric model for performance and price.

Berendsohn found that it delivers high pressure and volume output, which makes for fast and effective cleaning power. No doubt it’s thanks to its always-running motor, so you don’t have to constantly be pulling the spray wand trigger to work, as with most electric models. We also appreciated the pressure sensor, which automatically adjusts output for whichever nozzle you’re using.

Other highlights include fat 10-inch wheels with deep treads, an on-board soap tank, accessory storage, and five spray nozzles. The Pro also stores upright to save floor space, though it operates horizontally so you won’t have to worry about it tipping over. Another bonus is that it comes with a 10-year warranty on the motor and a three-year warranty on tools.

The only drawback of note is that the hose outlets for the spray wand and garden hose hookup are fairly close together, which isn’t ideal in terms of easy access.

We recommend the Xtream for light-duty washing and easy portability on a budget. This machine punches well above its price tag for extras and includes two removable detergent tanks and a cleaning brush specifically for automotive wheels, plus five spray tips.

Thoughtful ergonomic design was another notable attribute discovered during testing, with every outlet, switch, and handle well-located and comfortable to use.

You can expect solid cleaning power for an electric pressure washer in this price range, with 2,030 psi and a max flow rate of 1.76 gpm. We found that it’s best on pavement, since it tends to tip over on uneven surfaces.

If it’s serious cleaning power you’re after, look no further than Ryobi’s 270-psi electric pressure washer. Its motor is larger than most, but while it’s heavier than other models here, pulling it behind you isn’t treacherous thanks to comfortable handle grip and oversize wheels. It also has a large soap tank and a 35-foot hose for cleaning at a distance without having to move the machine.

This model features on-board accessory storage and comes with five nozzles, plus there’s a Velcro strap for the cord to keep it from getting tangled in the hose. However, the spray wand mount is on the handle, which seems like it would be convenient but, in practice—as discovered during testing—it’s too easy to bump and knock off.

Craftsman’s 2,100-psi electric pressure washer handles like a dream thanks to its compact, lightweight design, and large wheels. It also cleans relatively quietly and with impressive power for its size; it’s capable of tackling medium-duty jobs like blasting dirt off concrete with its turbo nozzle.

We particularly appreciated its extra-long 35-foot power cord and large, easy-to-access top-and-center detergent tank, plus its slide-on spray wand mount that makes it pretty tough to knock off (unlike with the Ryobi).

Overall, it’s another great choice for the price, much like our value pick Sun Joe. Though if you need enough power and reach to clean second-story siding, there are better choices.

We tested this highly portable Craftsman electric pressure washer for our 2023 Yard & Garden Awards, and its ingenious design and admirable cleaning power more than got our attention.

For starters, the compact machine is constructed like a piece of rolling luggage, complete with a telescopic handle and two integrated wheels at the base. There’s designated space inside to store the spray gun and nozzles, plus a compartment of sorts to neatly stow the coiled hose. Also, the steel frame that houses all of the components is conveniently made for stacking and storing items on top.

While this electric pressure washer can easily tackle cleaning concrete and light-duty jobs that involve removing dirt and mildew on things like fences and patio furniture, it isn't powerful enough or have the reach to clean a second story..

If you can swing the price, this compact Craftsman model is ideal should you need a power cleaner and electric pressure washer in one. The machine runs on two 20-volt batteries and offers three power settings, with a max flow rate of 1.2 gpm. Like DeWalt’s portable electric pressure washer, it also has a convenient telescoping handle.

We found its 800-psi low setting to be the most useful for light-duty work and appreciated its lightweight build, easy maneuverability, and relatively quiet operation. Use it for cleaning things like gunked-up mountain bikes and dirty car floor mats.

Rachel Klein is a Senior Commerce Editor for Popular Mechanics, where she writes about everything from garden hose reels and patio furniture to mesh wifi systems and robot vacuums. She started her career as a daily newspaper reporter and was a travel editor for more than a decade before she started testing and reviewing luggage, noise-cancelling headphones, and other travel-related products. Fast-forward another five years and her area of expertise includes home decor, appliances, tech, and outdoor adventure gear. In her spare time, you'll find her planning her next trip, reading historical fiction, and seeing as much art as she can squeeze into a weekend.

Roy Berendsohn has worked for more than 25 years at Popular Mechanics, where he has written on carpentry, masonry, painting, plumbing, electrical, woodworking, blacksmithing, welding, lawn care, chainsaw use, and outdoor power equipment. When he’s not working on his own house, he volunteers with Sovereign Grace Church doing home repair for families in rural, suburban and urban locations throughout central and southern New Jersey.

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Best Overall:Best Value:Most Powerful:Easiest to Handle:Most Portable:Best for Small Jobs:.