Kärcher K2 vs. Kärcher KHB5: which pressure washer is right for you?

We compare the mid-range Kärcher K2 and cordless Kärcher KHB5 to see how these pressure washers differ

Kärcher K2 vs. Kärcher KHB5
(Image credit: Karcher)

The evenings are getting longer and that can only mean one thing: spring is finally here, bringing with it good weather and a time to clean things up after a long winter. For many people, that can mean cleaning driveways, cars, and other large surfaces. To help you, we've done many tests to find the best pressure washers and are comparing the Kärcher KHB5 and Kärcher K2 today.

You can, of course, choose to get your hands dirty (or wet, as the case may be) and clean your patio, drive, car, bike(s), and so on by hand – or you could pay someone to do it for you – but a pressure washer is well worth considering. A professional clean, done by yourself at home, when you want. It's ideal.

To help you may the choice, we've tested a load of different pressure washers, from the expensive to the cheap, and German brand Kärcher reliably makes the best on the market, from the high-end Kärcher K7 on down to the budget K2.

Today we're interested in the budget Kärcher K2 and the handheld Kärcher KBH5, a pressure washer that costs around the same as the K2 with one obvious benefit: no cords. While there is less power, for many people the convenience will make up for it. No more will you become entangled in multiple different cords and pipes.

Let's jump into the comparison. 

Best pressure washer: Kärcher KHB5

(Image credit: Future)

Kärcher K2 vs. Kärcher KHB5: which has more power?

As you might suspect, the contest for power between the Kärcher K2 and Kärcher KHB5 is fairly easily won by the K2, the wired model. Because it relies on batteries, the KHB5 has a lot less power than the K2. According to the company, the K2 can manage a maximum of 110 bar of pressure and a 360 flow rate. The KHB5 manages 24 bar and a flow rate of 200.

While these numbers aren't awful, if you have some really tough things to clean – your drive, for example, or a patio – then it's worth going for the K2 and living with the extra wires.

The KHB5 does excel when washing more delicate things, however, like older cars and bikes. Of course, you can just turn down the pressure on the K2, but if your main cleaning needs are for delicate objects, it's worth considering the KHB5 and its cordless design. 

Karcher K2

(Image credit: Karcher)

Kärcher K2 vs. Kärcher KHB5: portability and Hoses

While power might not the KBH5's strong suit, portability is: at just 2.9kg, you're unlikely to get anything near the ease of moving it around elsewhere. For reference, the standard version of the K2 weighs 4.3kg and the compact K2 weighs 3.7kg, both without any accessories.

The KHB5 is plug-and-play, just connect the hose and it works instantly. The K2 is a more traditional pressure washer with multiple different settings. It's worth noting that the K2 lacks a built-in hose reel. 

If you need to move your pressure washer a lot, for whatever reason, the less powerful KHB5 is the obvious and best choice. 

Kärcher K4 Full Control Pressure Washer review

(Image credit: Kärcher)

Kärcher K2 vs. Kärcher KHB5: the winner...

Which one of these two pressure washers is the best depends entirely on what your needs are, whether you mind having less power, and how much moving you need to do. The K2 is easily more powerful and versatile, but for many portability – or lack thereof – is a deal breaker.

We really like both of these pressure washers and highly recommend either, especially with a decent discount. 

Max Slater-Robins has written for T3 now on and off for over half a decade, with him fitting in serious study at university in between. Max is a tech expert and as such you'll find his words throughout T3.com, appearing in everything from reviews and features, to news and deals. Max is specifically a veteran when it comes round to deal hunting, with him seeing out multiple Black Friday campaigns to date.