How many Bar do I need for my Pressure Washer?

Anyone who wants to buy a pressure washer always asks the same question: “How many bars should a good pressure washer have? However, this simple question is not so easy to answer.

How much bar you need depends largely on the area of application. We have therefore created a table below where you can see the tasks and our recommended bar figures. But be sure to read the whole article so that you can understand our recommendations.

Area of applicationRecommended pressure (bar)
Bicycles, garden tools, dustbins20 bar
Wooden benches, wooden terracesmin. 80 bar
Car wash, motorbike wash85 bar
House facades130 bar
Paving, stones130 bar

Short answer “Pressure washer how much bar ?”

100 bar and 360 l/h flow rate is what a pressure washer should have at least for normal household use. However, if you only want to clean your bicycle and garden furniture, you can get by with less. However, if you need the pressure washer for larger tasks around the house, you should go for one with more power.

What are the benefits of high pressures?

As you can see in the table, a pressure of about 100 bar is needed for most tasks. But why are there so many pressure washers with more than 100 bar? The reason is actually quite simple. Because with a higher pressure you can clean larger areas faster.

This is because you can maintain a greater distance from the surface to be cleaned and still achieve sufficient cleaning performance due to the higher pressure. With a higher distance, the water jet is distributed over a larger area and you can therefore make much faster progress. However, this also depends on whether the delivery capacity is sufficiently dimensioned for the pressure.

Delivery rate more decisive than pressure

In DIY stores, you often find pressure washers that can build up a high pressure but are rather more sparingly dimensioned in terms of delivery capacity. This has a simple reason: it is easier for a manufacturer to build a pressure washer with a lower delivery rate than one with a higher delivery rate.

In addition, the higher the maximum pressure of the device, the more difficult and therefore more expensive this becomes. However, the delivery rate should always be in proportion to the maximum pressure, otherwise only spray mist will come out of the nozzle after a short distance. As you have read above, this would exactly counteract the sensible effect of a pressure washer with more pressure (bar).

Therefore, we have compiled a table for you where you can find our recommendations for the delivery rate in relation to the pressure. Here, the more delivery capacity available, the better it is.

Pressure (bar)min. flow rate (l/h)
100 bar360 l/h
120 bar380 l/h
150 bar420 l/h
160 bar450 l/h
180 bar480 l/h
200 bar500 l/h

The difference between maximum pressure and working pressure

The maximum pressure of a pressure washer indicates the maximum pressure the unit can reach. For example, if the water flow is interrupted, a high pressure can build up in the unit for a short time. This is then calculated or measured and is output as the maximum pressure.

The working pressure, on the other hand, is measured from the outlet of the pressure washer pump. However, it is still reduced or increased by the piping in the unit and the accessories. The working pressure is approximately 10 % – 20 % below the maximum pressure.

Since not all manufacturers state the working pressure and this is often only stated for higher-quality pressure washers, we have decided to show only the maximum pressure in our tables. Otherwise, the professional devices would perform superficially worse in comparison to the cheaper models.

Pressure regulation, the most important feature in a powerful pressure washer

If you decide to buy a pressure washer with more than 150 bar, you should make sure that the pressure washer has a sensible pressure regulation.

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Otherwise, you will not be able to perform tasks that require low pressure. This includes cleaning wooden benches, bicycles, cars or wooden terraces. A good example is the cleaning of car paintwork, because this can quickly be damaged if you work with too small a gap and too high a pressure.

That is why a maximum pressure of 85 bar and a litre capacity of 420 l/h is recommended. You can also regulate the pressure with the distance to the surface, but with pressures over 150 bar it is enough to make a mistake and the surface is “ruined”.

Other crucial features of a pressure washer

There is, however, another feature that can also have a considerable influence on the cleaning performance and that is the hot water function. With hot water, oil and grease residues can be removed easily, whereas with cold water it is a real mammoth task.

In addition, the accessories are much more important than one might think. For example, a dirt blaster can blow away moss and other stubborn dirt in a few seconds, whereas a sandblasting has to be used several times over the same area.

Alfred Harper

Alfred Harper

Alfred Harper is a former consultant and product expert at a company producing cleaning equipment. He was working at this position for more than 10 years and has gained incredible experience and knowledge as he has tested almost all pressure washers brands and models and became an expert in this field. Now, he is writing reviews and how-to articles about pressure washers and makes a great contribution to the Pressure Washers company to help people to choose the best cleaning equipment for home use.

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