Are you looking for the best electric pressure washer for car detailing? If so, you’re in the right place.
In this post, I’ll recommend the three best pressure washers I have used and help you figure out which one is best for your needs. I’ll also discuss using a pressure washer to clean your car and provide tips for getting the job done correctly.
So whether you’re just starting or are looking to upgrade your current setup, read on for all the info you need!
What Is An Electric Pressure Washer?
An electric pressure washer plugs into an outdoor power source. They start quickly with the flip of a switch since no priming is required.
Most electric pressure washers are medium-duty models designed for routine car washes, small driveways, and garages. These models are relatively quiet and lightweight. They require little maintenance because they don’t create exhaust fumes. And in winter, no winterization is required.
However, these models’ range is limited to the length of the hose. But you can always extend the working area by adding an extension lead for outdoor use.
Pros and Cons of an Electric Pressure Washer
- A convenient, portable design that makes it easy to use.
- Lower cost compared to gas pressure washers, which can be expensive to maintain and operate.
- No harmful emissions or fumes, making it a safer choice for environmentally conscious car owners.
- Electric pressure washers may not be as powerful or durable as gas models.
- They can also be slower to use.
- Additionally, they require access to electricity to function correctly, which may not be available in all locations.
What PSI Pressure Washer is Safe For Cars?
Generally speaking, most experts recommend using PSIs between 1200 and 1900 to ensure adequate cleaning while minimizing potential damage to your car.
Higher PSI can damage your car’s paint, while lower PSI can leave behind dirt and debris.
If you’re unsure what PSI to use, start on the lower end and gradually increase the pressure until you find a sweet spot that works for you. Don’t go any higher than 1900 PSI when using a pressure washer on your car as a general rule of thumb.
Best Electric Pressure Washers for Car Detailing
Below are three suggestions from my experience on what electric pressure washer is the best for car detailing. They are Sun Joe SPX3000- my favorite, Karcher K2000- the most user-friendly, and WHOLESUN 3000PSI- the most versatile on a budget.
Quick Comparison Chart
Sun Joe SPX3000
|Flow Rate in GPM||1.7 GPM||1.3||1.8|
|Nozzles||0°, 15°, 25°, 40°, soap nozzle||Turbo, Soap, 15°, 40°||0°, 15°, 25°, 40°|
|Hose Length||20 ft.||25 ft.||20 ft.|
|Cord Length||35 ft.||35 ft.||35 ft.|
|2, 0.9 gallons||2, 0.5 gallons||250 ml foam cannon|
|Weight||29.6 lbs.||25 lbs.||18.46 lbs.|
|Warranty||2 years||3 years||2 years|
1. Sun Joe SPX3000 – My Favorite
Sun Joe has the most extensive catalog of pressure washers, so this is the first place I went searching for an electric pressure washer for cars. I was looking for a mid-range pressure washer that cleans my car and performs other jobs around the house. So, choosing the Sun Joe SPX3000 was a no-brainer. I have used it for two years.
What I Like
The SunJoe SPX3000 only takes me about 30 minutes to assemble. All that’s needed is attaching the hose holder, wand holders, and soap bottles. There are small crews for connecting these parts. You’ll notice that all the plastic pieces have a heavy-duty construction.
To install, I connect the metallic spray wand to the trigger gun. The spray wand and trigger gun require twisting together for a tight fit. I also need a hose that delivers high-pressure water to the trigger to use this unit.
The SunJoe SPX3000 delivers 2030 PSI of pressure and 1.76 GPM (gallons per minute) water flow. It comes in the midrange power for cleaning your car, a small driveway, patio, deck, bike, or outdoor furniture. Don’t hold your breath because you can’t remove mold on an asphalt driveway with this pressure – it’s not made for heavy-duty tasks.
Besides, you’ll get five nozzles, including 15-degree, 25-degree, 40-degree, and a 0-degree option. The 40-degree nozzle is very gentle for windows and delicate surfaces, while the 0-degree is the most powerful. Be careful not to use this nozzle on your car since it can strip paint. I like that I don’t need a foam cannon with this model. The soap nozzle covers up the vehicle, making cleaning my vehicle fun.
This pressure washer also comes with a replaceable garden hose adapter. So, when it starts to leak, you can easily replace it with a new one. Moving its 27.6 pounds of weight is effortless thanks to the large wheels.
When storing this pressure washer, I use pump protector liquid to prevent minerals in leftover water from seizing the pump’s internal gaskets.
What I Dislike
Although the wheels on this unit are large, they are not as big as those on the others. Thus, moving it on less than smooth surfaces can be troublesome. I also noticed that it has a shorter hose than most pressure washers since it’s only 20ft. long, while the Karcher K2000 has a 25ft hose.
Sun Joe SPX3000 will give you the best value for money. It is well-rounded with all the necessary features you require at its price range. In addition, it has a vast collection of nozzles and durable components so that you won’t be going back to the store any time soon.
Highly recommend Sun Joe SPX3000 for beginners. You can buy one below:
A foam cannon is needed to use with a pressure washer. Buy one below:
You can watch the below video to learn more details about Sun Joe SPX3000.
See also: Foam Gun vs. Foam Cannon
2. Karcher K2000 – The Most User-Friendly
When searching for a little more oomph from a pressure washer for cars, I decided to try the Karcher K2000. It is a pricier option than the other two models on this list. I bought it mainly for the few extra features that make up for the higher price.
Nonetheless, this is the smallest and most compact unit among Karcher’s line of pressure washers. So, it’s on the budget side compared to the K3, K4, K5, K6, and K7. Thus, it has a modest flow rate, and it’s not as popular as the K4.
What I Like
First, the Karcher K2000 is simple to assemble. The instructions are not very clear because it’s a bunch of pictures without words. Nevertheless, you’ll get it up and running in about 20 minutes. It has washers on both wheels, so you don’t input the washers if they are wobbly.
The Karcher K2000 comes with a folding handle and two oversized wheels that make portability super easy. The hose winds around the pressurized hose reel for easy storage.
The 25ft. hose is sufficient for tackling all-around your vehicle from the roof to the tires without tagging on the machine. This pressure washer can reach 2000 PSI and 1.3 gallons per minute (GPM) flow rate. This pressure and flow rate are enough to wash your car safely and effectively.
Aside from the decent pressure, the Karcher K2000 comes with four nozzles. There’s the 40-degree nozzle, a 0-degree nozzle, a 15-degree nozzle, and a soap nozzle. You can choose a 65-degree nozzle with your order for detergents.
Moreover, it has two 0.5-gallon detergent tanks. It also has dials that make it easy to switch from washing your car to the driveway without inputting more detergent. And a storage bin for your cleaning and detailing accessories.
Apart from washing your car, the Karcher K2000 is an excellent option for cleaning the driveway, clearing gutters, and removing mold on house siding, patio, and deck.
The footswitch is what I like most about the Karcher K2000. I no longer have to bend significantly with a bad back when turning this pressure washer on and off. Furthermore, it leaves my hands free to control the hose for more flexibility.
What I Dislike
I bought this model to wash my car but expect it to perform more tasks. So, I noticed that it struggles with algae on marble tiles and concrete. Additionally, it lacks extra holes, so that I couldn’t input any additional tips. The reel is a nice touch, but you can’t use it with a longer hose.
The Karcher K2000 is a highly durable and very convenient unit. It has thoughtful features such as the pressurized hose reel and on/off footswitch that places it closer to the best pressure washer for cars in 2022.
Buy your Karcher K2000 below:
You may also need Karcher Pressure Washer Car Wash Soap. Buy below:
3. WHOLESUN 3000PSI – The Most Versatile On a Budget
Although the other pressure washers in this list are excellent at what they do, there are times you need something as powerful as a gas model. The WHOLESUN 3000PSI is the cheapest alternative to gas pressure washers that I could find for washing my vehicle.
What I Like
The WHOLESUN 3000PSI is straightforward to assemble. You first screw in the available hose reel and the cord holder on the unit’s backside. Then there’s the pressure washer wand that has a quick connect system to the pressure washer lance. You also have the option of attaching a brush handle.
Another thing that you need to connect is the fixed section of the hose that goes into the hose reel. It has a rubber O-ring, so it’s best to apply a high-temp grease on it to help it seal better.
WHOLESUN 3000PSI includes a small 250 ml foam cannon best used on small cars. You can’t put a lot of product in it, meaning you’ll make several refills on a large vehicle. You get four nozzles, including the 25, 15, 40, and 0-degree options. This pressure washer will flow at around 1700 PSI and 2200 PSI.
The WHOLESUN 3000PSI outputs water at a flow rate of 1.8 GPM, not the 2.4 GPM rating that the manufacturer states. Still, it’s decent enough to clean cars, ATVs, house siding, sidewalks, stained cement pavements, and outdoor furniture within a decent amount of time. You’ll also like how easy it is to scrub your rig in late summer and fall with the brush handle.
What I Dislike
The first thing that I don’t like about the WHOLESUN 3000PSI is the 20ft hose. I have to drag the machine as I wash around my truck, and I can imagine the hassle it will take when washing an RV. Nonetheless, the hose has a standard 3/8-inch quick connect socket so you can buy an extension hose.
Moreover, the WHOLESUN 3000PSI pressure washer is tall, making it more susceptible to tipping over. Hence, some elbow grease is still needed to keep it balanced. Lastly, it does not come with storage for the pressure washer nozzles. If you don’t have a place to store them, they’re easy to misplace.
The WHOLESUN 3000PSI is the most versatile electric pressure washer that I’ve used. Instead of the soap nozzle, it has a foam cannon. The brush and hose reel are also thoughtful additions. The WHOLESUN 3000PSI is on the budget side, but it’s one of the most powerful options for the money.
You can buy WHOLESUN 3000PSI below:
What’s Better for Auto Detailing, Gas or Electric Pressure Washer?
There are pros and cons to both gas and electric pressure washers. For me, an electric pressure washer is better for car detailing.
Gasoline-powered pressure washers are typically too powerful for detailing work and can easily damage the paint and sensitive surfaces. They’re also louder, require more maintenance, and produce emissions.
On the other hand, electric pressure washers have much more control and can be adjusted to provide the right power. They’re also quieter, easier to maintain and don’t produce emissions, essential when working in enclosed spaces.
Pick one to help your detailing job easier!
Tips For Using an Electric Pressure Washer
- Always start with the lowest setting and work your way up.
- Hold the nozzle about two feet from the surface of the car.
- Be careful around sensitive areas like mirrors and windows.
- Rinse the car from top to bottom.
- Dry the car with a clean microfiber towel.