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Master Painter
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Discussion Starter #1
I'd like to know what kind of machine life you guys are getting out of your pressure washers ? and what type of units your using ? I'm a small company and tend to buy a smaller unit ( About 3000 psi ) I usually get one from my local big box hardware chain , Lowes or Home Depot . But these units all seem to go south after about a season of use ! They perform till about the time the warranty expires then POOF !!! an issue ! At the moment I'm using a Troy-Bilt with a Honda engine but it's already been in for a major service and the warranty is about to expire .


 

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Delco, Pa
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1,176 Posts
Bobbo said:
I'd like to know what kind of machine life you guys are getting out of your pressure washers ? and what type of units your using ? I'm a small company and tend to buy a smaller unit ( About 3000 psi ) I usually get one from my local big box hardware chain , Lowes or Home Depot . But these units all seem to go south after about a season of use ! They perform till about the time the warranty expires then POOF !!! an issue ! At the moment I'm using a Troy-Bilt with a Honda engine but it's already been in for a major service and the warranty is about to expire .
I also use a smaller pw. I have a 3000 psi Karcher. I'm impressed with it so far. I've only had it for a few months though.
I would rather buy my units from somewhere other than a box store, but that's just me.
 

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Master Painter
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Discussion Starter #4
Are those the ones homeowners buy to wash their cars and driveways? lowes has jhon deer rigs they are nice, any heavy duty pw should last forever, their really hard to brake.

A homeowner use power washer is about 1800 psi . I usually use one about 2700 to 3000 psi . I don't think you would use mine to wash your car unless your looking to remove the paint :)
 

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A homeowner use power washer is about 1800 psi . I usually use one about 2700 to 3000 psi . I don't think you would use mine to wash your car unless your looking to remove the paint :)
most pros will tell you psi is not what seperates a pro machine from a homeowner machine gpm is what its all about,
 

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My machines go 2000 hours before a pump rebuild. Engines last 4000-5000 hours. Home store units are garbage for the most part. For $1,500 and maybe another $500 in maintenance you can have a unit that flows 4 gpm that lasts ten years. That's $200/year. Professionals invest in their tools. That's what makes us pros, right?
 

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Master Painter
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362 Posts
Discussion Starter #8
My machines go 2000 hours before a pump rebuild. Engines last 4000-5000 hours. Home store units are garbage for the most part. For $1,500 and maybe another $500 in maintenance you can have a unit that flows 4 gpm that lasts ten years. That's $200/year. Professionals invest in their tools. That's what makes us pros, right?

My main business is painting , The power washing is mostly for decks or houses I'm going to paint . I do a good share of pressure washing jobs but mainly just in the summer time . If I had more call for it I would invest in a larger machine but I don't know if that expenditure is warranted ?
 

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Master Painter
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Discussion Starter #10
Do you guys empty the fuel out of your power washer in the winter or add a fuel stabilizer or something ? One of the problems I had was fuel gelling up in the lines . Is it me or just bad gas :eek:
 

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We're living in a throw away world and I'm down with it. I buy the 2700 Psi or so cheap powerwasher from the depot. It pays itself off in a week the rest is gravy.
When something major breaks it won't see a shop it'll go to scrap and I get another one. I get outa there for like three hundred bucks so who cares.
 

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I got a honda 13hp that is about 8 years old changed the oil maybe three times, still going strong, had to replace the stock pump once

I get mine from water cannon. 13 hp 4gpm. mounted on trailer and take it off in the winter to store in my garage. I have bought 2 in the last 12 years. The other is being used on another trailer by a guy helping me out.

The trick is not buying crappy stuff from a box store and it does not matter the PSI or the size. The pump is what makes the washer.
 

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We use Sherwin-Williams MiTiM machines. We have them for years. Like PP said, buy one good machine and it will cost nothing over the course of its lifetime. Buy crap and it lasts one year and nobody wants to fix them because they are considered throw-aways
 

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We bought a used 13 HP Honda PW about 12 years ago and just changed the plug in it this year . We also changed the oil for the first time but we never touched the pump oil . Whatever gas is in it at the end of the Fall season is what starts it in the Spring...and it always starts with 1 pull of the cord . It was absolutely the best piece of gear we have ever owned . We bought a new Honda from Home Depot last year...it's still in the box...sounds like we wasted our money if everything I have read on here is true . :(:(
 

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Born 2 Paint
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My machines go 2000 hours before a pump rebuild. Engines last 4000-5000 hours. Home store units are garbage for the most part. For $1,500 and maybe another $500 in maintenance you can have a unit that flows 4 gpm that lasts ten years. That's $200/year. Professionals invest in their tools. That's what makes us pros, right?
Thats the route Im going on my next one. Ive been buying the $600-$700 Mighty M units through SW and only getting a year out of them. Total POS machines. I wont buy another one of them. :no:
 

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Painting Contractor
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I bought a Graco brand 9hp Honda, Cat pump washer about 15 years ago. Had the pump rebuilt once. Change the oil every year or so, though haven't yet this year. The thing is awesome. I bought a 2500 psi unit from Costco, and got a few years out of it, more than I actually expected. The pump blew and my neighbor rebuilt it. It's such a joke compared to the good unit though. Really only good for washing cars, or having a less experienced person use it cuz they can't really hurt anything with it.
If my 9hp unit ever goes, I'll upgrade to the 4gpm units they sell at pressuretek, though not convinced I even need to go with belt drive with the great life I've gotten out of a direct drive unit

Btw what is an "unloader" on the pressure washer? I've read that you want an external one with a certain length on it.
 
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