Greenworks GPW1501 Review
Pros: Small, light, inexpensive
Cons: Poor cleaning power, no wheels
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Our Analysis and Test Results
To compare pressure washers we set them head-to-head in a battle royale, running dozens of assessments and experiments to determine which models were the best for certain tasks. During our assessment, we found that the GPW1501 is the perfect pressure washer for those who only need a machine for easy tasks. The GPW1501 does not have the most fantastic sprayability, but where it falls short in power, it excels in other aspects. It comes in a tiny package, which is highly portable. In fact, it's light enough to carry around with one hand while operating the wand with the other. It's also exceptionally quiet, and with its simple design, it is a no-brainer to operate.
To give each pressure washer a score for cleaning we took a number of measurements followed by a series of tests. We weighed the amount of water that each machine emitted in one minute in order to determine gallons per minute of flow (GPM). We then used an in-line meter to measure the pounds per square inch of pressure (PSI) at the end of each high-pressure hose, just before the trigger attachment. When these two figures are multiplied, the result is cleaning units (CU), a term commonly used in the pressure washer industry. We then used a device that we built, which we refer to as the testing trough, to gain a better visual representation of the power that each model possesses. The testing trough is a 12-foot long wooden track that we built and adjusted to angle of 24 degrees to test how high each pressure washer can hold a standard bocce ball. We then covered a clean carpet in activated carbon to get a feel for how efficient each tool is. Finally, we spent some time using each washer for a number of different household tasks such as cleaning gutters, sidewalks, and cleaning up sawdust left behind at a job site. Altogether, these evaluations are responsible for 45% of the Greenworks' final score.
Cleaning was a tough metric for the Greenworks GPW1501. We measured and calculated a mere 1428 CU for this model, putting it far below the top models on the list for this assessment.
During the bocce ball experiment, the GPW1501 showed so-so results, again, far below the best models.
When it came time to clean up the activated carbon, the Greenworks really couldn't handle the job. As cleaning up gutters and sawdust this model didn't do much — it struggled to move pine cones up a 6" curb. However, we did find it to have adequate spraying power to rinse the dust and mud off of a vehicle. In many cases, the lower CU and power is ideal for washing the grime off of outdoor equipment and other objects without having to worry about destroying them.
Accounting for the next 30% of our total score is the portability metric. To score portability we looked at the storability of each model, how easy they are to move around a job site, how easy they are to transport in a vehicle, and their weight.
The GPW1501 is phenomenally movable. It only weighs 15.5 pounds, making it one of the lightest pressure washers that we've ever gotten our hands on. This is beyond helpful for both moving around a property or job site and getting into and out of a vehicle.
The Greenworks is so light that you can carry it around while you're working. The only thing that really limits the mobility of this model is the length of the cord and the length of the garden hose you are using.
When it comes to how easily a pressure washer is stored, the GPW1501 is one of the best. It is only 22.5" x 13.5" x 11" and with its upright design and nice cord and hose storage it can easily be tucked into the corner of a garage. A great benefit of owning an electric pressure washer as opposed to a gas-powered model is that they can be stored inside, compared to in a garage.. This model is no bigger than the average household vacuum and could easily be tucked into a closet.
The next metric in our review is noise, which accounts for 15% of the total score. To tally numbers for the pitch we used a panel of judges to decide if there were any especially aggravating sounds made by each machine. We then employed a sound meter to take decibel level measurements right next to the machine and again from 25 feet away.
Noise was another great metric for the Greenworks GPW1501. Our panel of judges found this pressure washer to be substantially less annoying than most of the competition, and like many electric models, it only makes noise when the trigger is depressed. Right next to the machine, it only produced 73.3 decibels, making it one of the quietest that we've ever seen.
At 25 feet away we measured 63.8 decibels — it dropped down a few spots at this distance, but is still exceptionally quiet, especially when compared to the loudest models.
Ease of Use
The remaining 10% of our total score is devoted to ease of use. To create scores for this metric we took several elements into account. We looked at the soap dispenser each model had if any. We noted the location of the nozzle holders and how easy they were to use on each model. We paid attention to the stability of the pressure washers when in use, and what type of maintenance they may require. Finally, we looked at the cord storage, the hose storage, and the hose connection locations and convenience.
The Greenworks is exceptionally easy to use for several subtle reasons. It has great storage for the collapsible wand, then both the high-pressure hose and the power cord get looped around the wand itself.
This model only includes two nozzles — a 25 degree and a 40 degree. We found these two options to be plenty versatile enough considering the GPW1501's power. They are conveniently located on a holder on the side of the washer's body.
We loved that the garden hose and high-pressure hose connections are on separate sides of the machine. This helps to alleviate tangling issues, and unlike models where the two connections are nearly touching each other, it reduces the chances of you pinching or scraping your hand while you're hooking them up.
The soap dispenser included with the Greenworks is very unique — the wand is detached from the trigger, then the soap tank is attached in its place.
If you're looking for a pressure washer for easy tasks, the GPW1501 is a fantastic value per dollar. It is one of the most affordable pressure washers on the market, yet it still handles jobs like washing vehicles with ease.
The Greenworks GPW1501 offers a good deal of performance considering its low price, making it the perfect choice for those who don't require a ton of power out of their pressure washer.
— Austin Palmer and Ross Patton