Skip to Content

Are Pressure Washing Businesses Profitable? Pros and Cons

Yes, the pressure washing business is very profitable in the United States. For instance, if you keep the equipment usage level high, you can expect to make at least 100 percent of the amount you pay for the equipment lease per month.

Let’s imagine the monthly lease payments for a van and equipment plus insurance are around $1,200 and your aim is to earn at least $2,400 per month. If your main customers are homeowners, you will just need about 3 to 4 jobs per week to meet this minimum and the rest can be regarded as business profits.

Also have it in mind that the commercial industry that encompasses cleaning services and power washing for homes, vehicles, ventilation ducts, swimming pools, driveways, gutters, windows, sidewalks, and other surfaces averages a value of over $117 billion. The industry is also expected touch $175 billion in the coming years.

Reports also have it that in the United States, on an average, a cleaning professional working full-time on such jobs can earn $10.73 every hour. More than 1.7 million workers are employed in the cleaning industry. These figures add up to give you an estimate of $30,000 to $60,000 in earnings per year.

However, in this business, many factors can determine the amount of profit you make as a pressure washing business. Factors like the type of areas you work on, the materials and equipment you use, and the extent of the cleaning required can all dictate the price you can request from your customers.

In addition, the income group and the city in which you work. Note that some cities, professionals working with power and pressure washers can expect to earn around $40 to $60 per hour and if you provide environmental services, you could expect to charge about $80 to $100 and above.

Some of the most successful businesses in this sector have many repeat clients. For simple jobs like pressure washing a car, pressure washing businesses charge a flat rate of around $50 to $100, which includes “detailing.” Detailing is more or less the finish work after the pressure cleaning is done.

It involves waxing the vehicle and making the vehicle look like new. Also, the cleaning of the exterior surfaces of real estate is another lucrative niche within this sector. You can charge by the square footage of the exterior surfaces that are cleaned.

Pros of Starting a Pressure Washing Business

Pressure cleaning can add value, prevent allergies and illnesses, reduce maintenance and repair costs, and provide many other advantages. Here are some of the pros of starting pressure cleaning business in the United States.

  1. Cleaning is a Regular Activity

Just like we all know, cleaning is one activity that needs to be undertaken regularly like maybe, once a year or in six months, depending on the location and seasonal factors. Howbeit, once you have developed a great working relationship with a specific set of clients, these people will likely keep contacting you any time they have the need for cleaning services.

  1. Earning Potential

One of the most visible advantages’ of running your pressure cleaning business is its earning potential. The industry is worth billions of dollars and is only likely to keep growing. You can hope to earn around $40 to $60 an hour or even more depending on the areas where you work, the kind of contracts you pick up, the surfaces you clean, your area of specialization, and many other factors.

  1. Low Start-up Costs

Starting a pressure washing business doesn’t require a large amount of funds. You can decide to invest in the equipment gradually as funds become available.

  • You can choose to hire the truck and rent the machinery.
  • Pick out the cheaper tools that may take a little longer to work, but can get the job done. You might have to replace them sooner, though.
  • You can also decide the equipment necessary for the particular contract you have taken up. For instance, the prices of hoses can vary from $50 to $1,000 and pressure washers can cost anywhere from $100 to $20,000.
  • You can manage the quantity of chemicals and detergents by using them only when absolutely essential. Hot water and steam along with the high-pressure jets work very well to clean most surfaces. It’s also safe for the environment.
  • To save on labour costs in the initial stages of setting up your business, you can perform the cleaning yourself.
  1. You Don’t Need Advanced Technical Skills

To start and run this business, you don’t need to train extensively or earn a degree. You can always work as an intern or take up a job with a company to learn the ropes before starting your own pressure cleaning business.

With high-pressure sprays, you can clean just about any kind of surface such as concrete, aluminium, building sidings, vinyl, wood, and so on. Howbeit, it’s imperative you get all the required permits and licenses to run your business according to the state where you intend to operate.

  1. Only Basic Business Skills Required

To start and run a pressure washing business, you only need some basic management skills and some common sense. For instance, time management, keeping records and accounts, scheduling jobs and meeting deadlines, managing inventory, and maybe, basic math for invoicing and drawing up estimates and bids to present to potential clients.

Also note that you’ll need some help with advertising or managing your website. You can always get a professional to help you with some of these tasks or you can search the internet for information on how to conduct them.

  1. Wide Business Scope

The field of pressure cleaning is very large and you can choose a niche market to offer a particular kind of service. Then as your business grows, you can always expand and serve the larger demographic. You can choose to start by targeting homeowners, residential markets, or commercial establishments.

You can also choose to specialize in cleaning building exteriors or driveways, decks, and patios. Or, you could offer excellent window and chimney cleaning services. Some start-up owners may also offer on site vehicle cleaning only

Cons of Starting a Pressure Washing Business

First and foremost, have it in mind that the benefits of starting a pressure washing business definitely outweighs any disadvantages you can sum up. Nonetheless, here are few cons associated with starting a pressure washing business.

  1. It is competitive

Generally, the cleaning industry is not so competitive. However, the truth is that there are so many cleaning businesses nowadays that it can be daunting to stand out from the competition. Nonetheless, if you find your unique selling points, you can actually standout and earn a substantial living in this sector.

  1. Managing teams can be stressful

If you have a bigger establishment, then managing your crew would be your main focus when running a successful pressure washing business. More or less, there may be ups and downs — and you may not be available to track them or see how they do their jobs.

  1. Pressure Washing is physical work

We all know that cleaning generally is a physical job and in the beginning, you need to invest time in making it right, doing repetitive movements on your own and carrying heavy supplies. This is without doubts the case only if you don’t hire an experienced crew from the start.

  1. Slow income at the beginning

Just like every other business, getting your first few clients is definitely not easy. And it is normal for income to be slow and you not earning much of the expected money in the first months. However, once you manage your business in the right way and figure out a way to find clients, you are all set up and ready to go.


Given all these pros and cons mentioned above, starting up and running a pressure cleaning business can be a smart entrepreneurial move. The average income you can make when running a pressure cleaning business can vary greatly on the kind of contracts and jobs you pick up.

But, as you keep working and expanding the sphere of your cleaning services, you can expect to grow your company and make good profits down the line.

As an expansion of the pressure washing business, you can also offer pressure cleaning of drains, pipes, and sewage lines. The equipment is similar and the water pressure is very effective in clearing blocked pipes, blasting tree roots out of the way, and keeping sewer lines flowing.