Factors in Choosing Between SPX3000 and SPX3500 Pressure Washer

Benjamin Franklin thought that death and taxes are the only permanent things in life. We’re afraid the great statesman forgot about one thing: cleaning. 

Whatever we do and whatever the size of our house is, cleaning has always been a part of it all. There are brooms, vacuum cleaners, and mops for the interior, while soap and scrubbing tools take care of what’s outside. Fortunately, manufacturing companies have developed better tools for cleaning over the years. One such tool is the pressure washer.

There are several options in the market for pressure washers. For this article, we aim to make an in-depth review of two of the most popular models produced by the New Jersey-based company Sun Joe. That’s the Sun Joe SPX3000 and Sun Joe SPX3500.

Let’s look at each model thoroughly, and at the end, let us see which one is superior and is a better fit for your needs.

Sun Joe SPX3000: A Delightful Mix of Portability and Value

Look around Amazon and other similar websites, and the SPX3000 is easily one of the best-selling pressure washers there is. It’s not difficult to see why. 

Here are some of the Sun Joe SPX3000’s selling points:

  • In a test of portability, the Sun Joe SPX3000 is up there in the list. Portability is a vital feature in a pressure washer, especially if you’re using it for various purposes. This determines if it can easily be loaded in a vehicle or carried around the property. It is ultra-light compared to other pressure washers and the SPX3500, weighing at a mere 28.2 pounds. Additionally, it has a set of 7.5-inch wheels to make it easier to roll around wherever you need it.
  • No matter how powerful a pressure washer is, if it’s out of reach in terms of price, then it won’t sell. For the Sun Joe SPX3000, it’s not equipped with the most powerful motor, but at $150, it’s an affordable option for people who need it in lighter cleaning projects around the house.
  • Another positive for the SPX3000 is it’s electric-powered, which means it doesn’t need gas or battery to function. It comes with a lot of accessories, including a 20-foot pressure hose, a spray wand, a garden hose adapter, five types of spray tips, and a 35-foot electric cord equipped with GFCI (ground fault circuit interrupter) for an added safety blanket. However, in using the electric cord’s safety feature, you need to plug it in a GFCI outlet.
  • Most pressure washers come with four nozzles, but the SPX3000 comes with five. These are the 0-degree, 15-degree, 25-degree, and 40-degree nozzles and one soap nozzle. It also comes with two soap tanks (0.9 liters each) for different cleaning needs, perhaps loading one with a detergent solution and another with a rinsing agent. Talking about convenience! However, since it doesn’t have a soap dilution system, the user has to do the mixing beforehand.
  • Its pump can generate 2,030 PSI while providing up to 1.76 gallons per minute of water flow. That’s much more than your typical garden hose provides.
  • The unit is equipped with a total stop system (TTS) that disengages the washer as soon as you stop pushing the trigger. It is also virtually impossible to start accidentally with its trigger lock mechanism.
  • It has a higher cleaning unit (CU) capacity than the SPX3500, which means it cleans more efficiently. Cleaning Unit can be calculated by multiplying the PSI and GPM.

Eventually, with its price point, you’d expect mediocrity to become a factor with the Sun Joe SPX3000. Here are some of its not-so-good features:

  • Its setup is only for light to medium cleaning, while its cleaning power is nothing to write home about.
  • If you stand beside the SPX3000, you’d hear over 80 decibels of noise. It’s not going to startle anyone, but it’s not the quietest either, which is surprising because it only has an average-powered motor.
  • You better find a way to store the hose because the unit can only hold the wand. The electric cord is almost too long for the unit, so it tends to hang awkwardly, which is not aesthetically pleasing, to say the least.

Sun Joe SPX 3500: Superior Power and Technology

The Sun Joe SPX3500 is basically the SPX3000’s hunkier brother, so it’s not a surprise that they share similar traits. It also comes with five nozzles, the same study wheels, a 20-foot pressure hose, and a 35-foot GFCI electrical cord. But where the parallels end, the differences begin.

Here’s where the SPX3500 differs from the SPX3000:

  • It has a more powerful motor capable of producing 2300 PSI while using only 1.48 gallons per minute. This feature allows the SPX3500 to clean more stubborn dirt and gunk than the SPX3000.
  • Speaking of the motor, Sun Joe says they employ a brushless induction motor technology, making the SPX3500’s operation as quiet as a whisper while keeping it free from wear and tear. In fact, the SPX3500 has the lowest noise rating among its contemporaries, measured only at 70 decibels.
  • It is more expensive and considerably heavier than the SPX3000.

*Important Reminder: Even with the difference in power, both pressure washers and any pressure washer, for that matter, packs a powerful punch. Be sure to wear personal protective equipment such as safety boots, goggles, and waterproof suits when you’re operating a pressure washer.

The Verdict: Which One Should You Choose?

You may choose one or the other depending on your personal needs and circumstances. 

For example, if you’re going to use a pressure washer to clean surfaces and gutters around your house, there will be no need to purchase a more powerful (and likely more expensive) unit. With that being considered, the SPX3000’s ergonomic, lightweight, and user-friendly design is the logical choice.

On the other hand, if you need more than the garden variety pressure-washing, the powerful motor of the SPX3500 comes in handy. At 2300 PSI, it gets rid of grime and gunk that the SPX3000 has no business tackling against. If you also want something equipped with better technology and has the potential to last longer, the SPX3500 is no doubt the better option. That is if you don’t mind spending a few more dollars.

In summary, the selling point of the SPX3000 is its portability (lightweight), lower price, and convenience (dual soap tank). For the SPX3500, power (2300 PSI), durability, and technology (brushless induction motor) is on its side. Now that we have broken down both units’ strengths and weaknesses, it will ultimately be up to you to decide the winner based on your cleaning needs. As far as we’re concerned, there are no losers with whatever you choose to go with.

1 thought on “Factors in Choosing Between SPX3000 and SPX3500 Pressure Washer”

  1. I have both. In reality, the SPX3500 I just bought cleans worse than the SPX3000 I have in some situations. In others, it cleans as well, but not better.

    I just bought the SPX3500 to take care of some more stubborn driveway cleaning chores that my SPX3000 couldn’t. Imagine my surprise when the 3500 would barely power the 13″ pressure washer surface cleaner (they are a round disk type so you get even spraying) my 3000 model would. It would barely rotate it. The pressure coming out the other end would barely take the mildew off the drive let alone the grime.

    I thought maybe the hose was restricting it. So I bought a new bigger hose. No improvement. I limited the hose run to just 25′, no help either. I called SunJoe tech support and tried things they suggested. They thought maybe the spray gun was bad so swapped it from my 3000. Still no improvement. Went through all kinds of troubleshooting steps and still no improvement.

    To their credit, tech support was awesome. I got someone quickly who was empowered to try and correct it. Sadly no luck with the call. To their support person’s credit, they are sending out a replacement one. I hope the new one is better and if it is, I’ll post here. Honestly though I am not holding my breath but I am willing to see.

    I bought it because I wanted the better motor as I use the 3000 more than I thought I would. I planned on giving it to a family member if the 3500 worked out. The 3500 doesn’t seem any quieter, and it has a higher-pitched sound which I find more annoying than the 3000. I wouldn’t mind spending the extra money if it is actually better but my side by side testing shows the 3500 I got is clearly worse than my 3000.

    We’ll see when I get the new one in a week or so if it is any better. Regardless kudos to SunJoe’s tech support.

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