Wondering how to start a power washing business? There are many answers to this question, but one step you cannot skip is determining the price of your services. Power washing uses a high-pressure water spray to clean dirt, debris, and grime from surfaces. When combined with other cleaning procedures, power washing is an effective way to scrub buildings, driveways, homes, and decks. As a result, power washing is very much in demand.
But how much should you charge for power washing?
In this guide, we’ll discuss power washing pricing by reviewing the different service types and factors that influence the cost.
Power washing vs. pressure washing
Before diving into pricing for power washing, it’s helpful to explore the differences between power washing and pressure washing.
Power washing and pressure washing are similar in that they both rely on high-pressure water streams to clean soiled surfaces. However, they differ in how they accomplish this task.
While pressure washers primarily use electricity, power washers almost always run on gasoline. Furthermore, a power washer uses heated water. While water temperature may not seem like a big deal, heated water can clean soiled surfaces more effectively.
Here’s a breakdown of when to use a power washer vs. a pressure washer:
- Surface type – Your best bet is to use a power washer on hard surfaces such as concrete, cement, and brick. A power washer’s high pressure and heat can damage softer materials.
- Soil level – Pressure washers are perfect for lightly-soiled surfaces. However, if you need to clean caked-on dirt and grime, you’ll likely need a power washer. Again, a power washer’s heated water makes a difference.
Now that you know the differences between power washing and pressure washing, let’s look at a few power washing services.
Power washing services
Your pricing guide can be based on the cleaning specialty. If you know the different power washing services, you’ll be in a better position to create an accurate pricing model. That’s because different services may cost more than others. The most common power washing services include:
- Driveway washing
- Deck washing
- Exterior washing
- Patio washing
Let’s discuss these services in more detail.
For many people, driveways aren’t just places where they park their vehicles. They’re also areas for activities like pick-up basketball games and chalk drawings. As a result, many customers may ask you to power wash their driveways.
Dirt and grime can often stain driveways. Furthermore, grease and oil from automobiles can tarnish the area. When power washing these areas, it’s important to hit every crack and crevice.
Many people enjoy spending late summer nights on their decks with friends and family. As a result, they’ll likely want you to power wash this area.
That said, power washing a deck involves a few more considerations than power washing a driveway. That’s because softer materials often compose these areas. These materials include:
- Synthetic materials
If you power wash a wooden deck too hard, you may cause the wood to crack and splinter. In other words, you’ll need to take a gentler approach on decks than on driveways.
Exterior power washing involves washing a home or building’s exterior. Like driveways and decks, these spaces can become stained with dirt and grime over time. When performing an exterior wash, you’ll likely need to clean:
That said, you may need to be delicate depending on the exterior’s construction. If a home is composed of stucco, for instance, you may need to lower your power washer’s pressure. You should also be careful not to strip paint off a home.
Because homes and businesses typically have different exterior cleaning needs, you may also need to inspect the home before firing up your water jets.
Based in Asheville, NC, Kospa Clean Power Washing knows how vital it is to inspect a home prior to pricing their exterior cleaning services. Their website states that they’ll provide you with a quote over the phone or in person.
By doing so, they can save you time and money by only charging for the exterior components that need cleaning. In this way, Kospa Clean Power Washing builds trust between the company and the customer.
Patios are similar to decks in that they’re both popular gathering spaces for friends and family. However, they differ in two main ways:
- Height – Decks are typically raised off of the ground. Patios almost always sit flat on the ground.
- Construction – Decks are very rarely made of cement or rock. Patios, however, are usually made of hard materials such as cement, rock, or tile.
Given their construction, patios are typically easier to power wash than decks. That said, you should still be careful when power washing a patio. If you set your power washer’s pressure too high, you might chip the surface.
While these are the main services, power washers can also be used for gutter cleaning, roof cleaning, and exterior window cleaning. Basically, any exterior surfaces with extreme dirt build-up can be solved with a power washing job.
Power washing pricing factors
Although power washing a residential home costs, on average, between $100 and $380, several factors can raise or lower this cost. These factors include:
- Home or building size
- Service type
- The amount of dirt and grime
- Service location
- Cleaning solution
- Power washing tools
Let’s take a closer look at each factor and how they affect the power washing price.
Home or building size
The size of the home or building helps determine how much you should charge for your services. That’s because larger homes and buildings typically require more time, energy, and labor to power wash.
Nationwide, the cost of commercial power washing ranges from $0.38 to $0.77 per square foot. That said, you may charge more or less per square foot depending on the home or building’s layout.
Furthermore, you may set minimum square footage requirements. Setting minimum footage requirements can make the service costs worth it for both you and your customers.
To illustrate the benefits of minimum square footage requirements, let’s look at Nokesville, VA’s Bright Exterior Cleaning. Bright Exterior Cleaning has a minimum power washing fee of $350.
Square footage largely determines this price.
By being upfront with its customers, Bright Exterior Cleaning can devote its resources to jobs that are cost-effective for the company and its customers. This transparency can go a long way toward growing any small local business.
Many small local power washing companies take the service type into account when determining pricing. That’s because areas like driveways and patios are generally easier to clean than decks and exteriors.
To help you gauge pricing by service type, we’ve provided national averages for each service:
- Patios – Power washing a patio costs, on average, between $119 and $244. The size of the patio may raise or lower this estimated cost.
- Decks – Many companies charge anywhere from $119 to $244 to clean a deck. However, you may need to charge more depending on the deck’s size and construction. You might also charge extra for stairs and handrails.
- Roofs – Roofs can be complex to power wash for several reasons. In addition to their heights, roofs pose challenges due to their construction. A tiled roof may loosen if too much pressure is applied. Given these nuances, power washing a roof costs between $250 and $600, on average.
- Exteriors – House and building exteriors are typically made of several materials. While some materials are easy to clean, others may be difficult. The difficulty of the material can help determine your pricing. For example, you can typically charge anywhere from $0.15 to $0.40 per square foot for brick homes. For vinyl siding, you may be able to charge between $0.29 to $0.35 per square foot.
- Driveways – Many companies charge between $108 and $262 to power wash a driveway. However, this price may change significantly based on the driveway’s length.
While these prices reflect the national average when it comes to power wash pricing, they may not reflect your community’s average. Thus, comparing your prices to similar power wash companies in your area can help you accurately price your services.
The amount of dirt and grime
The amount of dirt and grime on a home or building can also affect the cleaning price. Homes and buildings that are dirtier tend to take longer to clean. As a result, your fees may rise when taking on these jobs.
Conversely, areas that don’t need as thorough cleaning may not require as much time and labor.
Price your power washing services with Nextdoor
When it comes to power washing, accurately pricing your services is a crucial part of growing your business. When you’ve set your prices, be sure to share them with potential clients nearby with Nextdoor.
Claim your Business Page and tap into your neighborhood. With a presence on Nextdoor, you’ll be able to build your reputation through recommendations, share important updates like your pricing guide through free Business Posts, and advertise discounts and promotions. Claim your page today to get started.