how to reclaim water from pressure washing

how to reclaim water from pressure washing

Reclaiming water from pressure washing, also known as water recovery or water recycling, is an eco-friendly practice that helps conserve water resources and comply with environmental regulations. It involves collecting and treating the water used during pressure washing so that it can be reused or safely disposed of. Here’s a general guide on how to reclaim water from pressure washing:

Tools and Materials Needed:

  • Pressure washer
  • Pressure washer surface cleaner (optional)
  • Collection and containment equipment (e.g., vacuum recovery system or collection mat)
  • Water treatment equipment (e.g., filtration and sedimentation tanks)
  • Chemicals for water treatment (if necessary)
  • Hoses and pipes
  • Storage tanks (for treated water, if reusing)
  • Pumps (if needed)
  • Discharge permits (if required by local regulations)


  1. Assess the Area:
    • Before starting pressure washing, assess the area to determine the best methods for water collection and containment. Identify potential water runoff points and areas that need special attention.
  2. Use a Pressure Washer with a Surface Cleaner (Optional):
    • If possible, use a pressure washer with a surface cleaner attachment. This can help contain water and debris during cleaning.
  3. Collect Water During Pressure Washing:
    • Use collection and containment equipment to capture the water and debris as you pressure wash. There are various options, including vacuum recovery systems and collection mats. The choice depends on the specific job and available equipment.
  4. Direct Collected Water to a Holding Tank:
    • Direct the collected water to a holding tank or temporary storage system. Ensure that the tank is properly sealed to prevent any spills or leaks.
  5. Pre-Treatment (if needed):
    • Depending on the type of contaminants in the water (e.g., oil, chemicals, sediment), you may need to implement pre-treatment methods such as settling tanks, oil-water separators, or chemical treatment to remove or neutralize contaminants.
  6. Filtration and Sedimentation:
    • Pass the collected water through a filtration and sedimentation system to remove solid particles and sediments. This helps clarify the water and improve its quality.
  7. Chemical Treatment (if necessary):
    • If the pressure washing involved chemicals or substances that require neutralization or removal, use appropriate chemicals and treatment methods to address them.
  8. Storage and Reuse (if applicable):
    • If you plan to reuse the reclaimed water, store it in clean and sealed storage tanks. Ensure that the treated water meets any local regulations or quality standards for reuse.
  9. Discharge or Proper Disposal (if not reusing):
    • If you do not plan to reuse the water, follow local regulations for proper disposal. In some cases, you may need a permit for discharging the treated water into the sewer or stormwater system.
  10. Maintenance and Regular Inspection:
    • Maintain and regularly inspect your water reclamation equipment to ensure it is functioning correctly and efficiently. Replace filters, chemicals, and other consumables as needed.
  11. Comply with Local Regulations:
    • Always comply with local, state, and federal regulations regarding water reclamation, discharge, and environmental protection. Obtain any required permits or approvals.

Reclaiming water from pressure washing is not only environmentally responsible but can also lead to cost savings over time. Properly treated and reclaimed water can often be reused for additional pressure washing jobs, reducing the need for freshwater consumption. Ensure that you have the appropriate equipment and follow best practices to achieve effective water reclamation while protecting the environment.