How to Maintain a High-Pressure Washer: 12 Tips for Peak Performance


  1. Store It Dry
  2. Clean the Nozzle
  3. Flush the Detergent Siphon
  4. Check and Change the Filters
  5. Inspect Hoses and Fittings
  6. Maintain the Pump
  7. Clean the Water Inlet
  8. Wash the Exterior
  9. Maintain the Motor
  10. Other Pressure Washer Maintenance Tips
  11. When to Call a Pro?
  12. Keep Your Pressure Washer Performing Its Best

A high-pressure washer is an invaluable tool for cleaning patios, driveways, cars, boats, and other surfaces. However, like any power tool, proper maintenance is essential to keep your pressure washer running smoothly for years to come. Follow this guide to learn how to maintain your high-pressure washer and keep it in tip-top shape.

Store It Dry

The first rule of high-pressure washer maintenance is always to store it somewhere dry. Moisture is the enemy of any machine, and pressure washers are no exception. After each use, be sure to towel dry the washer if it got wet during cleaning. Let any remaining water drain out of the hoses and the pump.

Before storing, run clean water through the system to flush out any soap or chemicals left over from washing. This prevents those substances from building up inside the components. Wait for the washer to fully air dry before putting it into storage.

Keep the pressure washer out of direct sunlight and away from extreme temperatures. A garage, shed, or basement are ideal storage spots. Laying a tarp over the washer provides extra protection.

Storing your pressure washer properly prevents corrosion, mold buildup, and freezing which can damage the pump and internal parts.


Clean the Nozzle

The nozzle is the pressure washer part that forms the high-pressure stream of water. It’s a simple piece but crucial to the washer’s cleaning power. Mineral deposits, dirt, and debris easily clog nozzles over time. A clogged nozzle causes uneven spray patterns and reduced water pressure.

Inspect the nozzle before each use. Remove any obstructions with a needle or blast it with water. Fill a bucket with clean water or a special nozzle-cleaning solution for a deep clean. Immerse the nozzle and use the needle to dislodge any grit. Rinse it thoroughly before reattaching it.

Replace the nozzle immediately if it ever appears cracked, warped, or misshapen. Damaged nozzles intensify wear on the pump.

High-Pressure Washers

Flush the Detergent Siphon

If your pressure washer has a soap application feature, maintaining the detergent siphon system is necessary. After each use, fill the siphon bottle or reservoir with clean water. Pump the water through for one minute to rinse out any leftover soap or chemicals.

To deep clean the siphon:

  • Fill the bottle with warm water and add a few drops of bleach. Shake vigorously and let soak for 5 minutes.
  • Drain the bleach solution and rinse 2-3 times with clean water.
  • Run more clean water through the siphon for a full minute to remove any remaining bleach odor.

Proper flushing prevents detergent buildup that can clog the siphon and internal components.

Check and Change the Filters

High-pressure washers have one or more filters to catch debris in the water supply. Filters protect the inner workings from damage.

Examine filters before each use. Remove any debris trapped in the mesh. Soak heavily soiled filters in mild detergent and scrub with a brush. Rinse thoroughly before reinstalling.

Replace disposable filters at least once a season. Reusable filters should be swapped out whenever they appear cracked, misshapen, or not cleaned.

Dirty, worn-out filters let abrasive particles into the system. Changing filters as needed prevents costly repairs down the road.

Inspect Hoses and Fittings

Pressure washer hoses endure a lot of bending, pulling, and weathering during use. Inspect them before each washing session. Check for cracks, leaks, kinks, or bulges in the hose. Also, examine where the hose connects to the trigger gun and washer.

Replace any hose that shows wear, leaks, or damage. Swap out fittings if the connections feel loose. Leaking hoses and fittings result in a major loss of water pressure.

Between uses, coil hoses neatly to prevent kinks from forming. Store hoses indoors when possible to extend their lifespan.

Maintain the Pump

The pump generates the high-pressure water stream that makes pressure washing possible. As such, it’s the heart of the machine. Proper pump maintenance goes a long way toward preventing breakdowns.

Before use, check pump oil and cooling fluid levels if your model requires it. Refill as needed with manufacturer-recommended oil. Change pump oil at least once a season.

Inspect pump fittings and mounting bolts. Tighten any that are loose to avoid vibration damage. Listen for unusual pump noises like squealing or rattling, which may indicate a problem.

Flush the pump after each use by running clean water through the system. Check and clean the water inlet screen as well.

Don’t let the pump run dry or overheat. Both can cause internal damage. Shut the pressure washer off immediately if the pump starts running dry.

Clean the Water Inlet

Hard water full of minerals passes through the inlet on its way to the pump. Those minerals eventually build up and clog the inlet, reducing flow.

Every 10-20 hours of runtime, clean the water inlet with a descaling solution or white vinegar. Circulate the solution through the system, then flush it with clean water.

Inspect the inlet screen and remove any debris caught in it. A severely clogged inlet will cut washing performance.

Wash the Exterior

Don’t neglect the outside of your pressure washer. Buildups of dirt, mud, and grime make the washer harder to handle and can obscure important labels and controls.

Wipe down the exterior after each use with a damp cloth. Use a mild detergent and scrub brush on heavily soiled areas for a deeper clean.

Avoid spraying the pressure washer with its own wand. The high-pressure stream can damage components.

Proper exterior washing keeps the washer looking like new for years.

High-Pressure Washers

Maintain the Motor

Electric pressure washer motors require minimal routine maintenance. However, they do need occasional attention.

  • Inspect motor vents and cooling fins. Use compressed air to blow out any dust, dirt, or debris that may obstruct airflow.
  • Check for leaks around the motor housing. Reapply motor sealant if needed to prevent moisture intrusion.
  • Listen for abnormal motor noises like screeching or grinding. Have an authorized service center inspect unusual sounds right away. They may indicate internal wear.
  • Well-maintained electric motors provide reliable power washer operation for ages. But let a professional handle any major motor repairs.

Other Pressure Washer Maintenance Tips

  • Inspect and replace worn-out O-rings, seals, valves, and connectors as needed to prevent leaks.
  • Lubricate gaskets, pistons, and bearings with manufacturer-approved lubricants.
  • Winterize the pump and plumbing with antifreeze if storing the pressure washer somewhere temperatures drop below freezing.
  • Keep batteries charged in cordless electric models.
  • Change gear oil in gear-driven pressure washers.
  • Clean out accumulated debris from inside the washer frame periodically.
  • Follow all maintenance guidelines in the owner’s manual.
  • More use tips here: How to Use a High-Pressure Washer Efficiently and Safely?

When to Call a Pro?

While much pressure washer maintenance can be handled at home, some issues require a professional:

  • Major pump repairs like replacing valves or rebuilding the pump head
  • Motor troubleshooting and repairs
  • Fixing leaky hoses and fittings
  • Replacing broken nozzles and trigger guns
  • Any electrical issues

Don’t attempt repairs if you lack training. Improper work could make the problem worse or pose safety hazards.

Schedule service with an authorized pressure washer repair center at least once a year. Technicians will thoroughly inspect all components and catch small problems before they become big headaches. UYUSTOOLS is the best pressure washer brand in China.

Keep Your Pressure Washer Performing Its Best

Pressure washers are invaluable for handling heavy-duty cleaning jobs. But like any machine, they require regular upkeep to stay in peak operating condition. Following these pressure washer maintenance tips, you can keep your washer running smoothly for years. Consistent care pays off with consistent cleaning power whenever you need it.

Read More