restaurant pressure washing

You no doubt recognize the importance of a clean restaurant – not just for attracting customers & offering a positive experience. It’s a matter of safety and compliance – cleaning a restaurant is not something owners or managers can overlook!

But, what is the best way to clean a restaurant? How often should it be done? What specific areas need to be cleaned? If you’re new to this responsibility, it can seem overwhelming – but it doesn’t have to be. The experts at Hotsy are here to help.

We’re the premier choice for pressure washers in San Antonio and throughout south Texas. And today, we’ll guide you through restaurant pressure washing: the fastest, most effective way to get your restaurant dialed in.

In the sections to follow, you’ll learn why pressure washers are the premier choice for restaurant cleaning processes. We’ll also explain what specific equipment and supplies you’ll need to invest in to reap all the benefits this tactic has to offer. Then, you’ll discover the actual steps that go into cleaning the interior and exterior of your restaurant.

First, let’s start with an overview of why cleaning a restaurant is so important.

The Importance of a Clean Restaurant – Inside & Out

There are two key reasons you need to keep your restaurant looking pristine at all times. And we’re not just talking about the dining area or your entryway. We’re talking about the parking lot, the exterior of your building, the kitchen, bathrooms – all of it.

It all comes down to building a positive reputation with local customers and keeping your facility safe and compliant.

Cleaning a Restaurant Leads to Happier Customers & Improved Reputation

We likely don’t have to tell you how damaging it can be to be known as the dirty restaurant in town. No one wants to eat at a place that’s known for being gross – and news like that travels fast. On the other hand, a clean restaurant is more likely to get positive reviews, word-of-mouth marketing, and repeat customers.

Customers are willing to pay more at a restaurant they perceive as clean. And that’s not all. They’re also more likely to return more often and recommend the restaurant to others. In other words, cleaning your restaurant can directly impact your bottom line in a very positive way!

Cleaning a Restaurant Keeps Your Facility Safe & Compliant

The other major reason you need to keep your restaurant clean is to maintain safety and compliance standards. No one wants to get sick from eating at a restaurant – and if your facility is not up to code, you could be putting your customers at risk.

There are all sorts of bacteria that can grow in a restaurant if it’s not properly cleaned and maintained. From foodborne illnesses to respiratory infections, there are many ways your customers could get sick if you’re not careful. And if they do get sick, you could be facing some serious legal consequences.

Not only do you need to worry about making your customers sick, but you also need to worry about employee safety. A dirty restaurant is a hazard for your employees, who could slip and fall or cut themselves on dirty surfaces. There is also the risk of grease fires from dirty, dusty hoods.

All of this is to say that cleaning a restaurant cannot be overlooked. And if this responsibility falls on your shoulders, you may be wondering what the best way forward is. Allow us to explain why restaurant pressure washing is the #1 choice in this day and age.

Why Restaurant Pressure Washing is the Most Efficient, Effective Choice

A pressure washer is a high-powered cleaning machine that sprays water at very high pressures to remove dirt, grime, and other buildups from surfaces. It can be used on both the interior and exterior of your restaurant – and it’s by far the most efficient, effective way to clean all areas of your facility.

There are many reasons pressure washing is the best choice for restaurant cleaning. First, it’s fast. You can cover a lot of ground quickly when you’re using a pressure washer – and this is especially important when you’re trying to keep up with a busy restaurant schedule. Second, it’s very effective. The high pressure gets rid of all the built-up dirt, grease, and grime – and it can even remove things like chewing gum and graffiti. With a quality detergent, the capabilities of your pressure washer will be supercharged.

Third, pressure washing is safe. When done correctly, there is no risk of damaging surfaces or harming people or animals. And fourth, it’s affordable. The initial investment in a good quality pressure washer pays for itself very quickly when you consider how much time and money you’ll save by not having to hire outside help or rent expensive equipment.

Now that we’ve gone over some of the reasons why restaurant pressure washing is such a great choice, let’s take a look at what you need to get started.

What You Need for Cleaning a Restaurant With a Pressure Washer

If you’re going to be restaurant pressure washing on your own, there are a few supplies and pieces of equipment you need to invest in. Some of these are obvious, and some you may not have even considered – which is why we’ll cover all your necessities below. Let’s start with the start of the show as we guide you through how to choose a pressure washer.

Industrial Hot Water Pressure Washer

There are quite a few different types of pressure washers you can choose from. There are gas powered vs electric pressure washers and hot water vs cold water pressure washers. Ultimately, we recommend you go with one of the hot water pressure washers for sale at Hotsy. They say nothing cleans like a Hotsy – and it’s true. We have a complete guide on how a pressure washer works when paired with hot water, explaining the extra power the heated capabilities offer.

Now – once you’ve narrowed down your unit to a heated pressure washer, the question becomes: what PSI pressure washer do I need? For restaurant pressure washing in particular, 2,000 PSI is a good estimate. You can also consider what GPM pressure washer will suit your needs best. 

If you’re looking for a specific recommendation, our article on the best commercial pressure washers is a great resource. You can also reach out directly to us – we’ll point you in the right direction. And if you feel that you only need to pressure wash your restaurant once or twice a year, you can rent a pressure washer, too.

Pressure Washing Detergent

Next, you’ll need to pair your unit with the best soaps for pressure washing. This will allow you to power down your pressure washer to prevent damaging equipment in your restaurant while pressure washing. The specialized detergent you use will also offer sanitization and disinfecting benefits.

But – what type of soap do you use in a pressure washer for your restaurant? It’s likely you’ll use a different formulation for the interior and exterior as the goals are different. With that said, what you DONT want to do is use a homemade pressure washer detergent. Stick with a specialized formulation made by the pros at Hotsy. Our pressure washer degreasers are proven to work and are ultra-cost-effective. Most importantly, they’re safe. Here are a few options that will work great for your facility:

  • BreakThrough!
  • Ripper I & III
  • Carbochlor
  • Miracle Wizz
  • Floor Wash

Scrub Brushes & Other Cleaning Supplies

It’s very likely that you’ll get your restaurant’s interior and exterior clean with just a pressure washer and detergent alone. However, there may be times when you need to manually agitate surfaces to remove caked-on grease.

So, you may want to consider having a few scrub brushes or other cleaning supplies on hand. You can also purchase restaurant pressure washing wands that have rotating nozzles and bristles built-in, making the process even easier. On that note, it’s also important to make sure you have the right soap tip for pressure washers!

Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)

Finally, you need to make sure you’re safe while restaurant pressure washing. This means having the proper PPE, or personal protective equipment. Depending on what you’re cleaning and how long you’ll be doing it, this could include anything from gloves and goggles to a full-face respirator.

At a minimum, we recommend wearing long pants, closed-toe shoes, and gloves while restaurant pressure washing. You should also avoid skin contact with any cleaning solutions, as they can cause irritation. In some cases, you may want to wear a respirator mask to avoid inhaling chemicals or particles. While you’re at it, be sure to read our guide on pressure washer safety – this will help you avoid accidents and injuries in the workplace.

How to Get Started With Restaurant Pressure Washing: The Interior

once you’ve got all the essential supplies and equipment on hand, you can move on to the fun part – actually getting started with restaurant pressure washing! We’ll start with the interior of your facility – as the process is quite a bit more intricate in the kitchen and dining area than outdoors.

Here, we’ll talk about how to pressure wash a restaurant hood, duct, ovens, dining tables/seating, and of course, the floor. We’ll also talk about cleaning out the bathrooms. Step one is prepping the facility.

Clear the Area & Put On Your PPE 

Before you even turn on your restaurant pressure washer, you need to do a bit of prep work. This includes clearing the area of any loose items and putting on your PPE. Once you’ve done that, you can start setting up your pressure washing equipment.

If possible, we recommend moving all restaurant equipment to one side of the room. This will make it easier to clean and will help prevent any damage to your equipment. If you can’t move everything, be sure to use caution when pressure washing around restaurant equipment.

Next, take a look at the area you’ll be cleaning. Are there any pre-existing cracks or holes in the walls or floor? These need to be filled in before you start pressure washing, as water can seep through and cause further damage. Once everything is prepped and ready to go, you can start setting up your pressure washer.

Set Up Your Pressure Washer & Add Soap

If you’re using an electric restaurant pressure washer, plug it into a nearby outlet. If you’re using a gas-powered restaurant pressure washer, be sure to add oil and gasoline as directed in the owner’s manual. Our guide on starting a pressure washer is a great resource if this is your first time. And, we also recommend our article on pressure washer tips and tricks.

Once your restaurant pressure washer is set up and ready to go, it’s time to add soap. Your specific unit will have a soap tank to which you can add the detergent – it should be fairly straightforward. However, we also have a resource discussing how to use a pressure washer with detergent if you want a bit more guidance on this step.

After your pressure washer is set up, you’re ready to start cleaning your restaurant. We recommend beginning with the hoods, then the walls, and finishing up with the floors.

Clean The Hoods First

Your restaurant’s hoods see a lot of use – and as a result, they can get pretty dirty. Over time, grease and grime will build up on the surface. If not cleaned properly, this can lead to serious problems like fire hazards or health code violations.

Fortunately, cleaning restaurant hoods is fairly simple with a pressure washer. Use the right soap, and allow the suds to sit on the surface for a while working their magic. Then, follow up with a water-only rinse to blast away the dirt and grime. For best results, we recommend using a 0° or 15° nozzle. Here’s a deeper look at how to pressure wash a restaurant hood:

Start at the top of the hood and work your way down. Be sure to move the pressure washer nozzle in a back-and-forth motion as you work. Pay close attention to any nooks and crannies, as grease can build up in these areas. Use a brush attachment if needed to loosen stubborn grime.

Follow Up With the Walls

After you’ve cleaned the restaurant hoods, it’s time to move on to the walls – which can also develop quite a grease mess. Start with a low-pressure setting and work your way up as needed. Again, be sure to use a back-and-forth motion as you clean. You may need to use a brush attachment on tough spots.

For restaurant walls, we recommend using a 25° or 40° nozzle. These nozzles will give you a bit more power to blast away grease and grime – and you’re less concerned about damaging the walls as you are with the hoods.

Finish With the Floors & a Spot Cleaning

Your floors are dirty and greasy as is. But after cleaning off the hoods and walls of your restaurant, the floors will be in serious need of cleaning.  restaurant pressure washing is the best way to clean restaurant floors – and it’s much easier than you may think.

For restaurant floors, we recommend using a 0° or 15° nozzle. These nozzles will give you a powerful blast of water that can break up grease and grime. Be sure to move the pressure washer nozzle in a back-and-forth motion as you work. You may need to use a brush attachment on tough spots.

After pressure washing the floors, be sure to rinse off any soap residue. Then, let the floors air dry or mop them as needed. You can walk through after and finish up with a spot cleaning on those hard-to-reach areas that your pressure washer didn’t quite get. You may want a spray bottle and a rag for corners, the tops of your hoods, and any other aspects of your kitchen or restaurant floor that were missed.

Next, Pressure Wash the Exterior of Your Restaurant

Getting your kitchen and dining room clean is just half of the battle – you cannot overlook the importance of keeping a clean building exterior, parking lot, and sidewalks. Fortunately, this is far easier and faster than cleaning the intricacies of your restaurant’s interior. There are three resources we want to point you toward for this part of the process:

  • Pressure Washing Concrete: you can learn how to keep your sidewalks clean in this article. Customers often spill food or drink on their way out – and other sources can muck up your walkways, too.
  • Pressure Washing Parking Lots: messes in the parking lot will convey a negative image of your restaurant. Whether they be the result of spills, oil leaks, road grime, or anything else, using a pressure washer to clean your parking lot is fast and easy.
  • Pressure Washing Commercial Building Exteriors: finally, finish up by pressure washing the exterior walls and windows of your building. This is something that you’ll only need to do once a year or twice a year at most. It helps restore the original shine of your building’s exterior and helps you make a great first impression.

Final Thoughts on Restaurant Pressure Washing

We hope this resource on restaurant pressure washing provides you with the confidence needed to take charge of this project for your own business. As you can see, it’s not as complex as you may have originally thought. 

And with the equipment and supplies available at Hotsy, you can restore a like-new look to your kitchen, dining area, and building exterior. Improve the appearance of your restaurant and watch customer satisfaction rise while business booms!