- Ideas & How-Tos
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Learn the best practices for caring for your pressure washer, to insure you get the most out of it for years to come.
Before using your pressure washer, take a few minutes to make sure everything is in working order.
Check engine oil and fuel levels, and top them off if needed.
Check inflatable tires, and keep the air pressure at the value marked on the tires or within 15 to 25 pounds per square inch (PSI).
Check the water inlet screen, and flush it with clear water if it's dirty or clogged. If it's damaged, replace it with a new screen and rubber washer.
Check the in-line screen. Flush it with clear water if it's dirty or clogged, and replace it with a new screen and O-ring if it's damaged.
Inspect the high-pressure hose, and replace it if leaks, cuts, abrasions or bulging exist or if couplings are damaged. New hoses must exceed the maximum pressure rating of your pressure washer.
Check the cleaning detergent tube and filter, and clean it if it's dirty or clogged. Check for leaks or tears, and make sure it fits tightly on barbed fitting. Replace the tube or filter if either is damaged.
Test the spray wand assembly. If the connectors leak, replace the O-rings. Clean the nozzle orifices if they're clogged, or replace the spray wand, adjustable nozzle or spray tips if the original parts are damaged.
Rinse out the garden hose. Flush debris from the hose prior to attaching it to the pump inlet.
Purge the water pump of contaminants by turning on the water supply. Remove the wand from the spray gun and start the engine. Squeeze and hold the spray-gun trigger until there's a constant, steady stream of water. Hold for two minutes, then engage the trigger safety latch, and refasten the wand to the spray gun.
Drain the oil and fuel from the engine. Remove the oil cap on the water pump with an Allen wrench, and tilt the pressure washer to drain the used oil into an approved container. Tilt the unit back in the opposite direction after the oil has drained.
Fill the water pump with fresh oil, following the directions in the owner’s manual. Reinstall the oil cap and tighten firmly, and then wipe up any excess oil around the cap. Set the pressure washer in the upright position, and clean up any spilled oil.
Change the oil in your pressure washer’s engine to keep the engine properly lubricated and to ensure that clean oil is distributed to critical engine components. This reduces friction, resulting in less wear and tear on engine components.
Replace the spark plug each spring to make starting more reliable and improve fuel economy. An eroded or fouled spark plug can provide an inconsistent spark.
Prevent clogging by changing the air filter. A clogged air filter reduces the air / fuel ratio, resulting in higher fuel consumption.
Add fuel stabilizer to improve starting by preventing stored gasoline from degrading to the point where it's no longer combustible.
Add fuel stabilizer according to the manufacturer’s directions. Run the engine for two minutes to circulate the stabilizer through the fuel system.
Place the injection tube in a pail of clean water, and run the pressure washer in low-pressure mode for one to two minutes. Shut off the pressure washer, and turn off the main water supply. Point the spray gun in a safe direction, and squeeze the trigger to relieve trapped pressure. Engage the trigger lock on your spray gun.
Disconnect all hoses and drain the hose, spray gun and nozzle extension. Store all accessories and pull the recoil handle about six times to remove any remaining water in the pump.
Store in a cool, dry place.