pressure washing business: Starting a Pressure Washing Business: A Definitive Guide with 4 Easy Steps

In the construction industry, the pressure washing business is definitely one of the most lucrative businesses that you can invest in. In fact, starting a pressure washing business is like starting any other business. The researching and planning process remains the same for any business, and you will be able to make real money with the right team if you make the necessary investments and do your bit.

Here is a comprehensive guide to stepping into the pressure washing business. Follow this guide and you will surely thank us later!

Steps to Starting a Pressure Washing Business

Step 1: Business Basics

a) Who should do this business?

First of all, you should ask yourself if you really enjoy and have a knack for pressure washing. There is no point in getting involved in this business if you are not really passionate about pressure or power washing and if you just care about money. Only those who are enthusiast about cleaning and washing things for people and have a pleasant personality have the possibility to outshine their competitors in this industry. Check to see if you really fall into this category of people and if not, think again!

b) What tasks would you have to handle on a day-to-day basis?

In simple terms, you and your team will be pressure or power washing the properties of your clients. You will have to maintain a good relationship with your existing clients and continue looking for the new ones to expand your client base. It is always important to keep your service region-wise so you can serve timely and give the best delivery every time. Also, maintain your appointments with your clients systematically to have positive feedback after your service.

c) Who should be your target market?

Based on your locality, your clientele would entail both commercial and residential establishments, such as homeowners, car owners, government agencies that require your service for roads and government structures, and business owners. If you can cover all these types of clients, your business will definitely be a success.

Step 2: Experience and Training

a) Why should you be trained first if you aren’t?

You need experience in this job because if you don’t, you could end up damaging the precious properties of your clients, giving your business a bad reputation as a result.

b) How to improve your pressure washing skills?

You will find many pressure washer training courses online with tips that you can enroll in. You will also find many training videos and DVDs to help you practice so you don’t make the same mistake twice. You should also clean every type of surface out there, including driveways, wall claddings, fences, cars, boats, garden furniture, garbage bins, back decks, and so on.

Step 3: Cost and Profit Estimation

a) How much investment do you need upfront?

We recommend that instead of spending a lot on buying the necessary pressure washing equipment initially, you lease them. There are a few benefits to this decision-

  • You won’t have to bear the high costs of expensive pressure washer business start up kit or equipment
  • This will keep your budget low and help you get your returns soon
  • In case your startup fails, the amount of loss would be at a minimum level

We’ve located 4 categories where you would have to invest most part of your capital:

  • Pressure washing gear and accessories e.g. commercial pressure/power washers for sale, nozzles, cleaning chemicals, surface cleaners, and trailers
  • Insurance, contractor license, and business permit related costs
  • Marketing costs for ads, flyers, or pamphlets
  • Transportation costs to reach your clients’ homes

Here is an estimated cost that would give you some basic idea:

  • If you lease for pressure washing equipment and water reservoirs that amount to $25,000, you may have to pay $3000 in down payment and $700 in interest
  • Leasing for a commercial van fitted with the necessary equipment would cost you around $500-$700 per month
  • Your advertising costs could be more or less $150 per month
  • Insurance-and permit-related costs could be around $200-$300 based on your state
  • Car maintenance costs and gasoline price would amount to around $250 a month
  • Establishing a web presence is another essential factor that could cost you around $400 for development and $100 per month to maintain it

b) Would your pressure washing business make you money?

Here comes the most important question, “could this business be really profitable to you?” In order to determine this, you have to pay attention to your pressure washing price list and analyze those of your competitors as well. Generally, you can expect $100 per hour for domestic and $150 per hour for commercial establishments in terms of your pressure washing business income. Here is a general estimate that would give you some idea just like the estimated startup costs. However, as you know, the pricing would vary based on the place you live in, the quality of your pressure washing equipment and service, your reputation and expertise, and some other factors.

Domestic Cleaning Prices

Step 4: Form a legal business entity

Based on your state, you may have to file for a wastewater discharge permit application and the official website of your local state could provide you with the necessary info.
You will also need to prepare the following documents to establish your pressure washing business and keep it going:

a) Business documents

  • License: to register your company with your state
  • Sales tax permit: to register your company with the IRS for tax purposes
  • Contractor registration from your state licensing office: to provide pressure washing services in your locality
  • Environmental permit: your state may or may not require this permit, so check before you operate your business

b) Insurance

  • Liability insurance: to cover any accidental damage from power washing
  • Workers’ compensation: for covering injuries to you or to your staff or others during a cleaning session
  • Business equipment insurance: for covering any damage to your pressure washing equipment

Additional Services to Offer in Your Pressure Washing Business

You can get more profit from your pressure washing business offering the following additional services:

a) Sealing and protective coatings:

When you’re done cleaning your client’s sidewalk, driveway, concrete, garage floor, or brick or concrete patio, you can offer them to apply a protective sealer or coating to the surface. Sealers usually come in 2 types – permanent or penetrating sealers and barrier or surface sealers. With some knowledge on them, your business can confidently offer sealing services to your clients.

b) Graffiti removal and anti-graffiti coatings

Pressure washing equipment are commonly used with graffiti removal chemicals to get rid of graffiti from substrates like brickwork or masonry. Since your business already has pressure washing equipment, why should you not try providing graffiti removal services?

c) Window cleaning

Well, can you pressure wash windows? If you can’t, think about it because this is another great service that could ensure repeat customer for your pressure washing business. A client of yours would generally ask for your pressure washing service 2-3 times a year, while the same client would reach your business for window cleaning 2-3 times per month. You can also consider cleaning of vehicles, sewage lines, drains, and pipes. So, you do the math and determine the profit margin.

To sum it up, anybody can establish a pressure washing business in the USA and make it successful with sufficient market research, competitive pricing, professional pressure cleaning services, and effective marketing strategies. So, what are you waiting for? Begin your journey today and don’t forget to share your own pressure washing business ideas or feedback in the comment section below. The Stuffoholics team will be happy to get back to you!


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