A reader asks: "We have maintained the outside courtyard of a building for over eight years by simply blowing the debris, emptying a few trash cans and picking up tree limbs. The new project manager is demanding that we pressure wash the concrete pads to remove dirt, oil and mold build up. Do you think this is fair that they have changed their expectations?"

We have determined in this set of articles that the contractor is responsible for pressure washing the concrete courtyard area fulfill the specifications even though it had not been enforced by the former building manager. If your company needs a pressure washer for such work on a regular basis, it might be prudent to purchase a quality unit that could easily generate income for what is often called tag work. Some areas to consider are front entrances, drive through areas (oil stains), parking garages and possibly vertical surfaces that can be cleaned using a pressure washer.

First, decide what psi (pounds per square inch) will be appropriate for your operations. Traditionally units range from 1,000 to 3,000 or even higher. Some have adjustable features that allow the operator to dial in the pressure they desire for each job. Another decision is whether to purchase an electric unit (usually considered light duty) or a gasoline powered unit. Most are on a frame with wheels for portability. Decide the quality of pressure hose to use since some can be very fragile while others are sturdy and can withstand a lot of use. Units can be purchased for relatively modest invests since it seems to be a very competitive market.

Of course, if you only use a pressure washer rarely, it might be wise to rent one for a day or weekend to perform the work. The advantage of this option is that maintenance falls on the owner. You do not want to purchase something that slowly ages in the warehouse due to lack of use.

Your comments and questions are important. I hope to hear from you soon. Until then, keep it clean...

Mickey Crowe has been involved in the industry for over 35 years. He is a trainer, speaker and consultant. You can reach Mickey at 678-314-2171 or CTCG50@comcast.net.