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Honey Do List: Look before you leap

You’ve made the move and gone out and bought a new pressure washer, and you just can’t wait to get started on all those cleaning projects. Now, before you jump into anything, STOP, take a deep breath, dig out the owner’s manual and read. Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions before using any power tool.

But here are two things to remember when using a pressure washer.

  1. THERE MUST BE WATER FLOW TO THE MACHINE BEFORE CRANKING.

Always attach a water hose to the unit and be sure there is water pressure on the hose. Watch out for kinks in your hose that may restrict water flow. Before turning on the water, press the trigger on the pressure washer nozzle to release any trapped air. Open the water valve so there is water supplied to the machine before cranking it.

  1. NEVER RUN BLEACH THROUGH THE MACHINE.

Make sure all chemicals that will be used in the pressure washer are rated for use in these machines. If you want to use bleach or bleach-based chemicals in your project, apply the chemical directly to the surface to be cleaned and then use your pressure washer to spray it down.

Forgetting either of these two points can result in a ruined machine that will not be covered by any warranty. This is true for electric and gas-powered pressure washers.

Gasoline-powered pressure washers are serviced just like a lawnmower. Fill the oil reservoir to the proper level, and fill the gas tank with fresh fuel from a clean can. Do not use E15 gasoline in any small engine. Most manufacturers have approved E10. Again, check the owner’s manual for your specific machine.

Next week we’ll look at nozzles and tips and more safety guidelines.

Don’t forget your safety goggles and gloves, and remember that help is just around the corner at your local hardware store.

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