Blog Power washer

Published on September 9th, 2013 | by Grant Barnard


How To Maintain My Pressure Washer

Maintaining a pressure washer is absolutely necessary. We’ve all seen the broken power washer at the garage sale. Whether you have an axial or triplex pump, a direct drive or a belt drivel – The Maintenance Is KEY. Some pressure washers have better designs and some have better price tags, ALL of them will last longer with the proper maintenance. These are things that we have learned from years of power washing in Indianapolis and surrounding areas.

Steps To Keep Your Power Washer Running Forever.

Power washer

Oil Changes

  • Engine – All gas power washers have oil for the engine. This should always be high quality oil and very frequently changed. Engine oil is not meant to stay stable for more than a year and that is why they tell you 3k OR 3 months on your car. With direct drive pumps(pump connected without a belt) the engine transfers heat to the pump and the pump seals melt. Heat is pretty much the only reason for pressure washer failure so your oil changes or the most important.
  • Pump – Your best pumps will have their own oil. This will not break down as quick but still needs to be changed after a few uses and then at least every year. This prevents the pump from heating up and causing the seals to wear prematurely. Because each brand of pump has slightly different seals you SHOULD ONLY USE THE SPECIFIC BRAND OF OIL FOR YOUR PUMP.

Pump Saver

Pump saver is a mix of lubricants and anti freeze. This is an absolute MUST before winter, whether your unit will be in subfreezing temperatures or not. This keeps corrosion from building up and then breaking and running through the seals and valves.

Spark Plugs

This is a fun one because it will never really destroy the power washer – IT WILL JUST MAKE IT STRONGER!! This is kinda like a tune up for your car. Any auto parts store will have the right spark plug for you pressure washer.


The hose to your pressure washer from your home will let it run easier, heat up less and actually make it stronger so your actually using it for less time with less stress to the power washer engine and pump.

Always Keep The Water Running

This is by far the most important thing. Nobody realizes that power washers are not meant to have the water stop when the pump is hot whether the engine is running or not. The power washer is only meant to be running for less than ten seconds. Think about how fast the pump will heat up when connected straight to a hot engine. After all the only thing that cools the pump is the water, so if the water boils then so do your rubber seals!!!  We also run the water by rigging the trigger with the unit off so it continues to cool it instead of the pump just absorbing the heat of the engine. We are an Indianapolis Painter that power washes and stains many decks fences and houses. We maintain three units with Cat and AR pumps and Honda 390’s.

Air Filters

Air filters are boring. Clean them. Change them and move on with your pressure washer maintenance.

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About the Author

Grant Barnard started painting in 2000 and started Grants Painting in 2008. Originally doing business in northern Indiana, the business was moved to Indianapolis and Greenwood shortly after. Today the Grants Painting has blossomed into a reputable painting contracting company with an ever growing extensive website including our How To DIY Articles. Grants Painting covers all aspects of coatings and specialized in epoxy flooring, interior painting, exterior painting and cabinet painting.

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