9 Common Mistakes When Using Pressure Washer- Must Read

pressure washer

Pressure washers are a very valuable tool in our society. It takes the place of a lot of other tasks that can be done with soap and water. 

They are the perfect tools to use when cleaning your driveways, sidewalks, patios, windows, decks, fences and more. Pressure washers are able to remove dirt and grime that you might not be able to get off with a simple hose or sponge. 

What many people don’t realize is that there are some common mistakes that many people make when they use a pressure washer. This article will identify these mistakes and give you some tips for avoiding them in order to keep your project going smoothly.

Common Mistakes When Using Pressure Washer

  • Incorrect Spraying Angle

Approach the area to be cleaned from an angle when using a pressure washer. The idea is to get the dirt off the surface and wash it away. You’ll only drive the dirt deeper into anything you’re trying to clean if you spray straight on it. On porous materials like wood or concrete, this is especially true.

Moving the spray head about to attack stains and dirt that has been ground in may be necessary, but there should always be some angle to “scoop” the dirt away.

  • Not Wearing Safety Equipment

Although pressure washers resemble giant squirt guns, they are not toys. A little stream of water with a pressure of several thousand pounds per square inch (PSI) can cut through flesh almost as quickly as a saw can cut through wood. Worse, the high pressure pushes dirt and water deep into the tissue, causing infection in many cases.

On hot summer days, another common blunder is not wearing shoes with close toes. Sandals may be more comfortable, but you could wind up in the hospital if you have a slight lapse of focus. It’s also a major omission to neglect to wear safety eyewear.

  • Using Inappropriate Nozzle

Many people make the mistake of choosing the improper pressure washer nozzle tip, which is a critical step in ensuring safety and efficiency.

When it comes to what you can and can’t pressure wash, there is a lot of information out there. As long as you use the correct nozzle, you should be able to pressure wash practically anything! The PSI coming out of the wand is affected by the nozzles, which modify the angle and dispersion of the spray. A lower pressure is created by a broader angle.

  • Spraying with Too Much Pressure

You might shatter wood, etch concrete, or punch a hole in vinyl siding if you use too much pressure while power-washing. Adjust the power washer’s pressure and make sure you’re standing far enough away from the area you’re washing to avoid harm.

  • Using Pressure Washer with Only Water

A detergent or chemical cleanser is required for almost all power-washing tasks. Start by spraying the area with a detergent that will break down dirt and kill mold and is safe for the environment. Apply the product as directed, allowing it to sit for a few minutes before power-washing it off.

  • Not Protecting Landscapes and Plants

With a garden hose, thoroughly damp down neighboring plantings before you start power-washing. Your cleaner will not dry on the leaves and cause burn marks if you do this. You may need to water the plants again if your job takes longer and the plants start to dry up. However, depending on the chemicals you’re using, you may want to use a tarp to protect the crops.

  • Spraying the Painted Surfaces

Some painted surfaces, especially if they are old or have been exposed to sunlight for a long time, may not be able to withstand even a gentle power-washing. On anything that is painted, don’t use a power washer.

  • Spraying with Hot Water

In industrial settings, commercial power-washing contractors utilize hot water because it cleans more quickly. If you use hot water while power-washing, you could warp your vinyl siding or harm other features like cedar shakes or shingles, which are not as strong as commercial surfaces.

  • Lack of Knowledge on the Equipment

You can inflict major damage while power-washing if you don’t know how to properly utilize the equipment. Before you leave with any rental equipment, make sure you get a complete demonstration and if possible a trial. If you’ve bought a power washer, make sure you read the handbook thoroughly before using it.

Most Common Problem with Pressure Washers and its Solution

  • Engine Troubles

One of the most prevalent issues with pressure washers is engine troubles. A filthy air filter is frequently the primary culprit. Because air cannot reach the carburetor due to a dirty air filter, the machine performs poorly.

Checking the complete air filtration system, including the seals, on a regular basis is a good idea. You’ll know what’s wrong if there’s a lot of dirt around these places.

  • Too Much Water  Pressure

A nozzle that is too tiny is the most typical cause of excessive pressure. To solve this, simply use the appropriate nozzle size. A faulty pressure gauge could also be the source of this problem with your pressure washer.

You could check your regulator for problems or adjust the unloader if these two things are working well.

  • Water Leakage 

We typically believe that leaking water from a pressure washer is a problem, but it may also be a beneficial thing. A thermal relief valve, which is intended to keep the pump from overheating, is frequently to blame. The water in the washer becomes clogged, preventing new, cool water from entering.

Pull the button about every minute to release the water. If you aren’t going to use your washer for a time, turn it off and leave it alone. Your pump may be permanently damaged if it overheats.

  • Problem With Pressure Washer Unloader 

An issue with the unloader usually results in a lack of pressure and leaks. Replace the unloader as soon as possible with one that equals or exceeds the gallons per minute (GPM) and PSI ratings.


We hope you enjoyed our blog post on pressure washers. Pressure washers are powerful machines, but they are also still machines. Pressure washers are a common tool used by many, but they can also be tricky to use.

 We are here to help new users of pressure washers avoid the 9 common mistakes that can cost them time, money, and their pride. Follow our advice and you will surely be able to find success with pressure washers!


Image from www.deere.com