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Old 03-17-2020, 04:58 AM   #1
Salmonkiller78
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Default New gas pressure washer recommendations

I’m looking into buying a new gas pressure washer… my budget is $400. Any recommendations on brands and models? It would be used for spring cleaning of my sidewalks, deck, driveway, gutters, siding.. And the occasional boat, truck and car washing. I had a Honda pressure washer in the past and loved it…. But had to sell it when I moved…
Thanks for your input.

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Old 03-17-2020, 05:22 AM   #2
Chad D.
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Default Re: New gas pressure washer recommendations

Do not get hooked on the hype of PSI being the only determining factor! At what GOM does the pump make the advertised PSI?

Multiply the PSI by the GPM to get a good number you can use to compare. For instance, my machine makes 3,300 PSI at 3.2 GPM. 10,560 is the number you would use to comparisons.

So if you find a 4,000 PSI at 2.1 GPM, it may sound great. Do the math. It’s only 8,400. My “little” 3,300 at 3.2 would beat the socks off it.

Otherwise, try to find a machine with a triplex piston pump rather than an axial pump. It’s easier to spot the good ones because they almost always have a horizontal shaft engine, where the axial pumps are typically beneath a vertical shaft engine. Triplex pumps are more effective, but also more costly. Cat and A/R both make good pumps. The pump is more important than the engine!

You may struggle to get a good performing machine for $400 unless you can find it used. I’d rather buy a solid used machine from a guy moving than a shiny new lesser suit...


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Old 03-17-2020, 05:59 AM   #3
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Default Re: New gas pressure washer recommendations

Most commercially used pumps have CAT pumps, but you'll pay for it. As the previous post said axial pumps are not a great pump, they work but have a limited life. The others out there are some form of piston driven pump, some have a primary and secondary pumping design. Karcher who by the way have been making pumps for years has a rotary disc that activates the pistons others use a camshaft design. My Karcher bought from Costco 16 years ago is only 2600 psi powered by a Honda engine is a workhorse. The only problem is the bi-pass valve wants to hang up once a year after sitting through the winter. Its a 2 minute fix likely caused by my acidic well water.
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Old 03-17-2020, 06:13 AM   #4
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Default Re: New gas pressure washer recommendations

Obviously not the main factor, but I wish that I had avoided the type of hose that mine came with. Great pressure, but it has a cheesy plastic hose with a screw on fitting at the machine, instead of a quick disconnect male/female type like the working end. I wanted to put a longer, real hose on for functionality and durability, but the fitting is a size and thread that is seemingly exclusive to the machine and didn't allow an easy switch to a real fitting. I might not have looked into it far enough, but that's my recollection.

I am surprised the plastic hose has held up this long, but it is not user friendly and too short. I'm guessing if I hadn't been careful to watch for kinks before pulling too hard, it would have blown out by now. Eventually I would like to have a new fitting fabricated at the machine. At the time (15 years or so ago), it was one step down from the "commercial grade" unit at Lowes.



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Old 03-17-2020, 06:35 AM   #5
Salmonkiller78
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Default Re: New gas pressure washer recommendations

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chad D. View Post
Do not get hooked on the hype of PSI being the only determining factor! At what GOM does the pump make the advertised PSI?

Multiply the PSI by the GPM to get a good number you can use to compare. For instance, my machine makes 3,300 PSI at 3.2 GPM. 10,560 is the number you would use to comparisons.

So if you find a 4,000 PSI at 2.1 GPM, it may sound great. Do the math. It’s only 8,400. My “little” 3,300 at 3.2 would beat the socks off it.

Otherwise, try to find a machine with a triplex piston pump rather than an axial pump. It’s easier to spot the good ones because they almost always have a horizontal shaft engine, where the axial pumps are typically beneath a vertical shaft engine. Triplex pumps are more effective, but also more costly. Cat and A/R both make good pumps. The pump is more important than the engine!

You may struggle to get a good performing machine for $400 unless you can find it used. I’d rather buy a solid used machine from a guy moving than a shiny new lesser suit...


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Something like this?


https://seattle.craigslist.org/see/f...094425543.html
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Old 03-17-2020, 07:06 AM   #6
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Default Re: New gas pressure washer recommendations

Honda...Best one I have owned. Can't remember model but it was within that price range ish.
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Old 03-17-2020, 07:47 AM   #7
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Honda motor, CAT pump. If you can find some bare bones ones.

A little over your budget, but will outlive you. It will become and heirloom to pass down

https://rover.ebay.com/rover/0/0/0?m...2F253138186075

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Old 03-17-2020, 07:50 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Salmonkiller78 View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chad D. View Post
Do not get hooked on the hype of PSI being the only determining factor! At what GOM does the pump make the advertised PSI?

Multiply the PSI by the GPM to get a good number you can use to compare. For instance, my machine makes 3,300 PSI at 3.2 GPM. 10,560 is the number you would use to comparisons.

So if you find a 4,000 PSI at 2.1 GPM, it may sound great. Do the math. It’️s only 8,400. My “little” 3,300 at 3.2 would beat the socks off it.

Otherwise, try to find a machine with a triplex piston pump rather than an axial pump. It’️s easier to spot the good ones because they almost always have a horizontal shaft engine, where the axial pumps are typically beneath a vertical shaft engine. Triplex pumps are more effective, but also more costly. Cat and A/R both make good pumps. The pump is more important than the engine!

You may struggle to get a good performing machine for $400 unless you can find it used. I’️d rather buy a solid used machine from a guy moving than a shiny new lesser suit...


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Something like this?


https://seattle.craigslist.org/see/f...094425543.html
Smokin deal
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Old 03-17-2020, 08:05 AM   #9
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Default Re: New gas pressure washer recommendations

Costco has nice Simpson units in your price range.

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Old 03-17-2020, 09:55 AM   #10
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Default Re: New gas pressure washer recommendations

My neighbor has a Honda I have used a couple times. On my pavers. My go to washer is an electric one for $99 from Home Depot. I have a trex deck and I think the Honda is to powerful for the deck and the camper. The cheap electric does he job. Maybe use a small portable generator for power, but most likely you are close to a plug as you have to have a water hose supply.
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Old 03-17-2020, 09:59 AM   #11
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Default Re: New gas pressure washer recommendations

My after owning several and having them blow up at critical times is this;
I only need it once a year so I rent the biggest one I can take from HD and run the pi$$ out of it and then send it back.
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Old 03-17-2020, 02:53 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Salmonkiller78 View Post


Yes!!! Buy that one if it runs. That’s half price or better.


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Old 03-17-2020, 02:59 PM   #13
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Default Re: New gas pressure washer recommendations

Don’t forget that good nozzles (tips) make a big difference, as well. Look at a Turbo Nozzle for deep cleaning. They’re amazing and really work fast. You’ll need to size it appropriately for the machine you buy. Amazon was a great source when I bought mine. I think most local retailers were in the $100 range, and I paid about half. They were pretty new at that time, so prices may have settled since.

I also really like my flat surface washer. It is as easy to use as a vacuum cleaner. Can even drink my beer at the same time... I think I picked mine up at Home Depot for about $70. It’s about 15” in diameter.

I also have an 18’ extension that I bought to clean my two story house. I can reach all but the top 3’ or the gables from the ground, and my roof peak is 29’! Really nice to be able to wash all the crap and cob webs off every year in under 2 hours.


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Old 03-17-2020, 05:34 PM   #14
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Default New gas pressure washer recommendations

I ended up buying it for $300. I ran it and tested out the hoses. Started up on 2nd pull and ran like new, hoses didn’t leak a drop. It came with the original bill of sale and some records for service. Came with all attachment nozzles and some other spinning nozzle(see pic), He was just an old man who used once or twice a year and wanted room in his garage. He estimates it had less than 100 hours on it. it looks like new and runs perfect.. oil level was fine too and could not find remnants of any oil leaks or fluids. Also came with a larger diameter hose to hook up to the water spigot.





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Old 03-17-2020, 06:32 PM   #15
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Default Re: New gas pressure washer recommendations

Got a killer deal on a used Honda 3000psi from home depot. Didn't look abused and had a guarantee for awhile.
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Old 03-17-2020, 06:54 PM   #16
Chad D.
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Default New gas pressure washer recommendations

Quote:
Originally Posted by Salmonkiller78 View Post
I ended up buying it for $300. I ran it and tested out the hoses. Started up on 2nd pull and ran like new, hoses didn’t leak a drop. It came with the original bill of sale and some records for service. Came with all attachment nozzles and some other spinning nozzle(see pic), He was just an old man who used once or twice a year and wanted room in his garage. He estimates it had less than 100 hours on it. it looks like new and runs perfect.. oil level was fine too and could not find remnants of any oil leaks or fluids. Also came with a larger diameter hose to hook up to the water spigot.





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That was a good find. You did well. GX series Honda motors are their commercial grade. GC is homeowner lightweight type. Cat pumps are highly regarded.

I think that nozzle may be an adjustable width spray. If it’s a turbo (0° pencil spray pattern that spins a zillion mph), you did super well!

Use the crap out of that machine. If it doesn’t do what you need, you can recover your costs and buy a new $800-1,000 machine that will do more... I bet you’ll be pretty happy though! Good job.


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Last edited by Chad D.; 03-17-2020 at 06:55 PM.
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Old 03-18-2020, 09:33 AM   #17
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Default Re: New gas pressure washer recommendations

I have had good service from a Ryobi with a Honda motor. It has a very handy spray nozzle that rotates for different spray patterns. I have a lot of hours on it.
One of the things to remember is to make sure you run the water to get air out of the pump before starting and never ever run the pump without full water pressure. A lot of folks blow up their pumps by running them dry even for a short period of time.
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Old 03-18-2020, 11:00 AM   #18
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Default Re: New gas pressure washer recommendations

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Costco has nice Simpson units in your price range.

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You won’t beat the quality for the price on this one. They do sell out fast. It’s a Honda motor on a Simpson pump. We’ve had ours for 4-5 years and love it.


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Old 03-19-2020, 10:29 AM   #19
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Originally Posted by Soulakala View Post
Most commercially used pumps have CAT pumps, but you'll pay for it. As the previous post said axial pumps are not a great pump, they work but have a limited life. The others out there are some form of piston driven pump, some have a primary and secondary pumping design. Karcher who by the way have been making pumps for years has a rotary disc that activates the pistons others use a camshaft design. My Karcher bought from Costco 16 years ago is only 2600 psi powered by a Honda engine is a workhorse. The only problem is the bi-pass valve wants to hang up once a year after sitting through the winter. Its a 2 minute fix likely caused by my acidic well water.
I think I have the same one and I purchased it in the early 90s and is still going strong with many loan outs to the kids and neighbors.

Soulaka---try hitting the intake and output of the pump with WD40 when done and it will keep that bi-pass from hanging when you fire it up the next time. It was suggested to me a long time ago and has been effective for me. Apparently the WD40 forces the water out of the valve so it doesn't stick.
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Old 03-19-2020, 12:00 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SImudBogger View Post
You won’t beat the quality for the price on this one. They do sell out fast. It’s a Honda motor on a Simpson pump. We’ve had ours for 4-5 years and love it.


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Last time I looked they also had an electric start one with a Subaru motor. I don't remember the brand or who made the pump.

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Old 03-19-2020, 07:44 PM   #21
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Default Re: New gas pressure washer recommendations

Slight tangent. My dad has a Cat pump on his pressure washer. It no longer develops high pressure and very likely the pump needs rebuilt. Has anyone on here rebuilt (or had rebuilt) a Cat pump? I'm a fair mechanic but certainly not an expert; I'd like to rebuild it myself unless it's too complex. Any feedback is appreciated! Thank you!
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Old 03-19-2020, 09:29 PM   #22
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Originally Posted by 541 Native son View Post
Slight tangent. My dad has a Cat pump on his pressure washer. It no longer develops high pressure and very likely the pump needs rebuilt. Has anyone on here rebuilt (or had rebuilt) a Cat pump? I'm a fair mechanic but certainly not an expert; I'd like to rebuild it myself unless it's too complex. Any feedback is appreciated! Thank you!


Have you trouble shot it down to a worn out or malfunctioning pump?
It may be as simple as a fouled unloaded valve or regulator. Those are stupid simple to pull out and check.

My A/R pump was giving me fits. It was just a dirty regulator. Pulled it, flushed it out, and been perfect since.


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Old 03-19-2020, 10:12 PM   #23
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Default Re: New gas pressure washer recommendations

There are oil fill and drain plugs made of hard plastic on the pump. My dad cracked the fill plug. He put a rubber plug in. The factory fill plug is vented. He poked a small hole in the rubber plug and went right on washing. Well, it puked about 2/3 of the oil out before he realized what was going on. That's the reason I suspect the pump is roached. I don't know if it would be as simple a fix as just putting more oil back in or if a seal or valve went dry and died. I did get him the proper replacement fill plug, now.
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Old 03-20-2020, 05:02 AM   #24
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There are oil fill and drain plugs made of hard plastic on the pump. My dad cracked the fill plug. He put a rubber plug in. The factory fill plug is vented. He poked a small hole in the rubber plug and went right on washing. Well, it puked about 2/3 of the oil out before he realized what was going on. That's the reason I suspect the pump is roached. I don't know if it would be as simple a fix as just putting more oil back in or if a seal or valve went dry and died. I did get him the proper replacement fill plug, now.


Ahhh. Roger that.

Maybe hop on a landscaper forum? I’m sure there has to be one, and there’s got to be a thread or twelve regarding pump servicing.

I believe that Chass has torn a pump apart and rebuilt it years ago, but that’s been a lot of beers back... If I remember correctly, they’re not a complicated machine. Three piston valve assembly.

Good luck!


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Old 03-20-2020, 10:34 AM   #25
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Default Re: New gas pressure washer recommendations

My wife thinks now's the time to get out the power washer...I think it's too early by a few weeks, lol
Anyway, we got one of those small Ryobi's at HD and it's done fine for 4-5 years now. We have so much concrete and deck to wash every year we hired out all but the deck last year. Seeing those guys use the big commercial grade rigs, if I was going to continue on doing it all myself, I would wish I'd gone bigger and run a 20" disc. instead of the 15' we use now.
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