After you finish using your pressure washer for the last time of the year, it's common to put it away without doing any maintenance on it.
Of course, because it's used for cleaning tough things like mud, mold, grime, and graffiti, it's bound to take a heck of a beating on the job.
If you want to get several years of service out of it, you'll need to remember to follow maintenance procedures before and after use. By following these steps, you'll be sure to get many more seasons out of your unit.
Pressure Washer Maintenance
Regular maintenance will ensure the safety and dependability of the pressure washer. Follow these steps before and after each use to ensure the unit is in proper working order.
Check the "o rings" on the ends of your high-pressure hose for wear and tear. Damaged o rings can cause serious problems including leaking and even injury during use. If one is damaged, replace it before use.
Check the nozzle at the end of your wand to make certain it's locked securely in place.
Be careful never to plug the nozzle with debris, dirt, or anything else.
Make sure, if you're using a gas pressure washer, that you have fresh gas and oil in it before starting it. Don't use gas that's been sitting in the tank since last season. If you have old gas, add some stabilizer and top it off with fresh gasoline.
Check your spark plug for corrosion. If you have a corroded spark plug, it could cause difficulty starting, and inefficiency during use. Replace corroded spark plugs prior to using.
Keep the spray nozzle open while the unit's running. Leaving it running with the nozzle closed will build up pressure within the hose, and could cause damage.
Don't run the pressure washer without an adequate amount of water. Not having enough water in your unit can cause the pressure to increase too much.
Switch the power to "off" and unplug the unit. Always do this first to avoid injury or damage to the washer.
Locate the chemical/detergent intake and clean it thoroughly with water. Make sure any residue or buildup is rinsed clean and the water running out of the intake is clear.
Wash away dirt and grime from the inside of the pressure washer to prevent any erratic behavior while it's in use.
Drain all excess water out before storing. Water left inside can attract insects, grow mold, and produce bacteria.
Store your pressure washer somewhere away from the elements where it can stay well ventilated and out of the sun, rain, and snow. Make sure it's not accessible to children who could injure themselves.
Important Note: Always follow manufacturer instructions regarding the use of your pressure washer, and maintain it properly to ensure safety to yourself and others.
If your pressure washer or high-pressure hose show any signs of wear and tear, discontinue use immediately. Buy a new hose, do not attempt to repair your hose on your own.
If the unit itself is damaged or excessively worn, take it to a repair shop or purchase a new unit.