The best pressure washers

For more cleaning power with less effort, look no further than a pressure washer — we’ve rounded up the best from Bosch, Karcher, and more, to make cleaning jobs both big and small a breeze

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It’s a sad fact of life, we always thought, that as car owners we are destined to spend our Sunday mornings scrubbing weeks of accumulated grime off our vehicles, armed only with a bucket of lukewarm water and a past-its-best sponge. Even if you don’t own a car, there’s always something in need of a good clean, whether it be bikes, driveways, garden furniture, or even paintwork, and it can eat considerably into our downtime. But if that concept leaves you cold, there is a solution: a good pressure washer. The question is, which one?

They’ll all do essentially the same job, but when it comes to parting with your hard-earned cash for the perfect model, it makes sense to consider a few things that might make your life considerably easier for just a little bit more moolah. 

How long are the hose and power cable? If you have a long or tall vehicle to wash, will the washer do an entire side from one position without having to be rejigged or unplugged and put in again somewhere else? Ditto your driveway, patio, or wall. “How much can I do without physically moving my legs” is a game we like to play with ourselves quite often (trying to reach the remote is a firm favourite), but in this case, it’ll really save you a lot of hard work.

Then, how high is the pressure? For cleaning muddy, post-ride bikes and over-wintered garden furniture, you won’t need a lot of power, so a compact model packing around 100 bar of pressure is probably ample. For loosening all manner of crud on patios and in guttering, a mid-range model should do the trick, while for ingrained dirt and larger areas, you’ll want to pull out the big guns: look for a washer offering around 120 bar of pressure. Finally, for the sake of your back, take a quick glance at the weight. As with many things, it can be a trade-off between high-powered equipment and a lightweight construction, so choose carefully.

If, like Misters Mercury and Bowie, you’re ready to put stubborn dirt under pressure, keep reading for our list of the best.

1. Colee XG-01G

For a super simple, no-frills pressure washer, this ticks all the boxes

Best for: Simple to use
Max. pressure: 120 bar
Hose length: 8m
Weight: 7kg
Reasons to buy
+ Simple to set up and use  + Not too loud 
Reasons to avoid
- Only one speed 

This Colee pressure washer is superbly simple to use, making it our best buy for first-time users, and everyone who doesn’t need a machine with lots of settings. Simply plug in the hose and press the trigger to start. As far as little extras go, it a detergent suction tube for adding soap, and that’s about it, but we like that this affordable pressure washer handles small to mid-sized jobs well without over-complicating things.

2. Nilfisk D-PG 140.4-9 Xtra 140

Built of sturdy stuff for a high-quality wash at a reasonable price

Best for: High quality
Max. pressure: 140 bar
Hose length: 9m
Weight: 13.8kg
Reasons to buy
+ Responsive pressure+ Great build quality 
Reasons to avoid
- On the pricier side

This high-end Nilfisk pressure washer makes the shortlist for its excellent build quality and the considerable power from its 2400W onboard motor. It’s certainly sturdy, but don’t be put off by the weight: it comes with a handle and wheels, so it can still be easily trundled around. The responsive grip-control pressure gives you just as much as you need at any one time, saving energy and water, and most importantly, it cleans like a dream, quickly and effectively. If you have a middling budget and aren’t sure what you need from a washer, make this your choice. 

3. Bosch AQT 37-13 Plus High Pressure Washer

This multi-tasking pressure washer lends a hand all around the house

Best for: Best all-rounder
Max. pressure: 130 bar
Hose length: 6m
Weight: 6.53kg
Reasons to buy
+ Lots of useful accessories + Easy to store 
Reasons to avoid
- Parts and controls not well-labelled 

Another brilliant mid-range pressure washer, the Bosch AQT 37-13 is a great choice for all manner of odd jobs. It comes complete with a range of accessories to help with patios, cars, bikes, and more, with the three-in-one nozzle proving especially versatile. The handle handily folds down for easier storage, so it won’t take up too much space in the garage, and the wheels make it easy to manoeuvre between jobs. If you’re a Jack (or Jill) of all trades, this makes a thoroughly good all-rounder for a reasonable price. 

4. Wolf Petrol Pressure Washer

A professional-level clean, petrol-powered for easy manoeuvrability

Best for: Big jobs
Max. pressure: 200 bar
Hose length: 6m
Weight: 37kg
Reasons to buy
+ Extremely powerful + Cleans quickly and easily 
Reasons to avoid
- Very large and heavy 

The ultra-manly-sounding Wolf Petrol Pressure Washer is the biggest and heaviest of our picks, but it also blows away the competition with its whopping 200 bar of potential pressure. It makes short work of even old, ingrained dirt with a powerful 3000 psi jet, and can be used from either mains water or a tank. It’s overkill for once-a-year small jobs, but if you’re a contractor looking to add a bit of oomph to a professional kit, or frequently have heavy-duty dirt to conquer, this is the natural choice. 

5. Karcher K7

The tough-as-nails K7 means business, and takes care of it in seconds

Best for: Best premium model
Max. pressure: 160 bar
Hose length: 5m
Weight: 18kg
Reasons to buy
+ Sturdy and stable build + Lots of power and control 
Reasons to avoid
- Very expensive 

Second only to the Wolf Petrol Pressure Washer in terms of weight and maximum pressure, the Karcher K7 is a fantastic electric alternative if you don’t need the mighty power of a petrol-powered pressure washer, but still want a ruddy good clean. Its three-in-one lance cleans quickly and intuitively, so you don’t have to change nozzles if you’re short on time, and the water pressure and detergent flow can both be controlled easily from the handle. If £500 is a stretch, consider the very good Nilfisk pressure washer, but if you can afford it, the durability and versatility of the Karcher make it a great investment. 

6. Bosch AQT 33-11 High Pressure Washer

The bigger Bosch’s mini-me can be carried anywhere to clean nooks and crannies

Best for: Compact
Max. pressure: 110 bar
Hose length: 3m
Weight: 4kg
Reasons to buy
+ Compact and light + Easy to transport 
Reasons to avoid
- Very short hose 

The budget- and storage-friendly AQT 33-11 is essentially the little brother of the aforementioned AQT 37-13, so if you liked the look of it, but have a small budget and little room in the garage, this is a great alternative. With integrated storage for all its accessories and a portable tank with carry handle, you can take this compact pressure washer anywhere, even on hard-to-reach jobs. Naturally, it’s not the most powerful, so while it’s perfect for keeping on top of a little muck, if you need more pressure, consider the Colee XG-01G. 

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