Pressure Washer Rescue Blog
Winterizing Your Pressure Washer

While it might be dry and warm inside for you, your pressure washer can be at risk of damage due to freezing.  Every spring we get flooded with calls from people that go to use their pressure washer only to find damage to the head, usually a small crack.  And every year we hear the same thing; "I blew all of the water out" or "I keep it in my garage."  Although those steps are encouraged, its usually not enough.  A very inexpensive bottle of Pump Protector can save you HUNDREDS OF $$$!

"But I blew all of the water out of the pump with my compressor."
Blowing out the water gets most of the water out, but not all of it.  There's always risidual water that remains in the nooks and crannies of the pump.  It's these small, seaminghly insignificant amounts of water that can cause over $100 worth of damage to your pump.  If your pump is exposed to temperatures that dip below 32 °F / 0 °C that water can freeze and expand causing cracks to form in the pump head.  These cracks are not repairable.  Some pumps have pump head replacements available but many pumps have to be replaced.

"I keep my pressure washer in my garage / shed."
Many garages and sheds can still get below freezing inside of them.  In my many years of dealing with pressure washers I can honestly say I've never had a customer with a cracked pump head due to freezing tell me that they left their pressure washer outside all winter.  Every single one of them was stored inside. 

Prepairing your pressure washer pump for winter is a vital step in proper pressure washer maintenacne.  It only takes a few minutes and is well worth the time.  Here are the steps for winterizing your pressure washer.

Shut down your system-
  • Flush clean water through your pump and chemical injector.
  • Turn off your engine, disconnect the spark plug.
  • Squeeze the trigger of the gun to release the built up water in the line and relieve the line of pressure.
  • Disconnect the high pressure hose and the garden hose from the pump.
Winterize the pump-
  • Connect the threaded fitting on the bottle of pump saver to the garden hose fitting on the pump.  If your bottle does not have a threaded fitting on it refer to the bottle for instructions.
  • Open the valve on the bottle and squeeze the bottle to push antifreeze into the pump.
  • Slowly pull the recoil to move the pump saver through the pump.
  • Repeat until you see pump saver coming out of the high pressure hose fitting.

If you have a commercial pump, here is a great Tech Bulletin by Cat Pumps that explains winterizing a larger system.
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Vancouver, WA, USA
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