Blog Pressure Washer Pump Scematics

Published on June 28th, 2012 | by Grant Barnard


Pressure Washer Pump Review – What Power Wash Pump Is Best

There are a few major pump makers that make a pressure washer pumps that are worth buying. There are benefits and downfalls to each pump. No other pumps other than these three are reviewed because these are the most used. There are other pumps out there but these are the most used in power washers. As far as power washer pumps go, the three solid pumps are a CAT Pump, AR Pump or a General Pump. Grants Painting offers Indianapolis Power Washing. Call Today if you are in the area and need professional pressure washing.

Keep in mind that we are reviewing the triplex plunger units that hold their own oil and NOT axial pumps or belt driven pumps. The units that we refer to have three pistons laying side by side and not in a circle. Also keep in mind that these are the pumps generally found at big box stores.

Here is our Pressure Washer Maintenance article. A good maintained pressure washer will last longer than a neglected one.

Pressure Washer Triplex Pumps

General PumpsPower Washer Pumps

Don’t forget the name! These pumps are economical and hold their power. They are super simple to rebuild and have the cheapest rebuild kits. Downside is that they are heavy and certainly not the most powerful pump.

CAT Pumps

Cat Pumps have our seal of approval. They say that these pumps have 9 lives. They Do! Slightly harder and defiantly expensive to rebuild, but the parts that you can’t replace economically or effectively rarely go bad. Order the parts that you need without buying the entire packet. The CAT power washer pumps also seem to pull from a long hose better than an AR pump will. However they run a bit hotter too so be sure to keep your water running when the machine is turned off.

AR Pumps

AR has achieved the best performance above all. Easier to rebuild but more expensive parts. They also run alot cooler even on hot days. AR Pumps can produce the same pressure and GPM that any other can but with less HP. This also means less gas because the engine works less to push this highly efficient pump that runs cooler than most. AR Pumps rarely bust a piston or blow out the bottom end of the pump. This means you can keep that pump for a very long time. However AR does make cheaper pumps. AR make them for homeowner units and are intended for use once in a great while are not meant for great abuse or long water lines. Other companies will use these pumps on power washers and still call it a commercial or industrial power washer but it is far from the truth and you will wind up with a pump failure very soon. Basically if the unit pushes 4000 psi or 4.0 GPM and you can find the same model number and at its lowest price online for $250, then you better use it only once a month or so and never for a full eight hour day.

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About the Author

Grant Barnard started painting in 2000 and started Grants Painting in 2008. Originally doing business in northern Indiana, the business was moved to Indianapolis and Greenwood shortly after. Today the Grants Painting has blossomed into a reputable painting contracting company with an ever growing extensive website including our How To DIY Articles. Grants Painting covers all aspects of coatings and specialized in epoxy flooring, interior painting, exterior painting and cabinet painting.

  • Jim

    Are any of the pumps on sears,home depot,lowe’s a quality pump.they r powered by Honda or Briggs Stratton?

    • Grant Barnard

      Big Box stores typically only sell weaker units meant for light homeowner use. Try this link
      These are just about the cheapest priced power washing units that are pro quality.

  • rick

    Good review Grant Barnard. I wondered why there was a large price difference between pumps with the same performance specs. Now I understand that some pumps are made for intermittent vs continuous daily use.

  • morgan

    Hello I need to replace a pump that has 3200 psi and 4 gpm. Any advice where to find a pump that would fit an 11Hp Honda GX-340?

    • Morgan, Well the best place that you can call and get a knowledgeable expert to help you with that is Pressure Washers Direct. You can find slightly better prices but the minor savings wont help if the wrong pump is sent.

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