How to Use a Power Washer

Using a power washer can be an intimidating experience if you haven’t used one before. But it doesn’t have to be that way. Power washers are just like any other cleaning tool: They require preparation, attention, and careful operation. 

If you can get yourself to pick one up, it can do wonders for your cleaning needs. Read on below to find out how to use a power washer safely and effectively.

What is a power washer?

Before you use a cleaning tool, it’s important to know exactly what it can and can’t be used for, especially with something as dangerous as a power washer. So what is a power washer and how can you benefit from it?

A power washer releases high-pressure water streams to clean surfaces of dust, dirt, grime, mold, paint, and anything that can stubbornly stick. It can be used for cars, boats, buildings, pavements, and most other concrete surfaces. 

There are two main variants, electric and gas-powered. Electric power washers can do the job for most home cleaning jobs, while gas-powered versions are ideal for industrial uses.

Power washing differs from pressure washing in that it uses heated water. This allows for a much more thorough cleaning experience with contaminants like thick oil and grease. One isn’t necessarily better than the other, but each has its proper uses. Think of a power washer as a heavy-duty alternative to a pressure washer.

How to use a power washer

Man washing car with pressure washer

Now that you know what a power washer is, it’s time to learn how to use one.

The first step is to make sure that your water source can handle the washer’s pressure. Electric power washers typically need 1.5 gallons per minute (GPM) of pressure at most, while gas washers need a stronger 2-3 GPM.

Next, using a garden hose, connect the washer to your water supply. Screw down the end of the garden hose into the washer’s water inlet. Do this as tightly as you can to ensure it stays snug as you’re using the washer.

Once that’s done, begin testing the washer by turning on the water supply. Make sure to set the washer to the lowest setting first so you can test the nozzle.

Then, squeeze the trigger to start getting a feel for the water pressure. Water will start moving through the power washer. While still at the lowest setting, keep practicing squeezing the trigger for about a minute or two.

You can now adjust the washer’s setting to a level that’s appropriate for your cleaning. If you turn the setting up, be careful of any recoil from the washer.

At this point, you may begin using the power washer to deep clean surfaces. 

When you’re done with the machine, simply release the trigger and turn on the safety lock. Turn off the water source and remove excess water from the washer. Then, remove the garden hose and put everything back in place.

Always put safety first

Remember to wear full safety gear at all times. Only operate the washer when the area is clear of children or bystanders. Keep your distance from the stream to avoid any accidents. Never use the washer on yourself, other people, or animals.

While using a power washer can be a strenuous task, it can help you accomplish a large amount of deep cleaning in a small amount of time.