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Old 01-01-2008, 03:36 PM   #1
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When using pressure washers


Just wanted to make folks aware if they don't already know this.

I notice that more and more folks are purchasing electric power washer units for home use which is fine. However, I'm not sure they realize that they should be wearing a suitable particulate mask (not the pedestrian sanding or sweeping kind) AND full eye protection whenever they clean. The water is customarily under a minimum of 1500PSI of pressure and part of the cleaning process is to remove stubborn and stuck on leaves, twigs, stones, bird poop, flaked paint, dirt, etc. courtesy of that pressure.

Often, cleaning or mildewcide chemicals are used in conjunction with the pressure washer. Any of these things - dirt, dust or chemicals - can seriously hurt your eyes if they strike them. Regular corrective lenses are not sufficient. Use a full goggle style of protective eyewear if possible but keep them properly shielded.

Homeowners and new or infrequent users should also realize that they're possibly breathing in a lot of debris, dirt, pollen, bacteria and mold spores as a result of the pressure cleaning, especially since they're usually standing closer to the surface being cleaned because of the shorter homeowner wands. They surely should NOT inhale the junk or dirty water vapor they're shooting off of surfaces or any of the chemicals that they may be using. An N95 particulate mask that also handles nuisance vapors should always be used. The ones with the breathing valve in them are the more comfortable to wear, even though they cost upwards of $5 each. A box of 10 can be purchased for proportionately much less.

Be safe as you clean! Happy, healthy New Year to all!

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Old 04-05-2008, 11:38 AM   #2
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When using pressure washers


Great post.

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Old 04-05-2008, 12:48 PM   #3
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When using pressure washers


Wearing proper footwear is important and should be common sense, although I am guilty of poor judgment in this department.

On a super hot day, I decided to rent a power washer and do the driveway. I knew flip-flops were a no-no, but it was hot, it was a quick job and I was aware of the potential hazzard of wearing open footwear. Well, sure as hell, I got sloppy and hit my small toe with the spray. It took off an nice dime sized piece of skin and exposed some meat. I learned my lesson the hard way.
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Old 04-06-2008, 10:25 AM   #4
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When using pressure washers


I would also make sure the washer is plugged into a working GFI receptacle or a portable GFCI receptacle that you can use on standard outlets. Working around water and electricity should be done with caution.
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Old 07-07-2009, 10:52 AM   #5
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When using pressure washers


i have a hp 1600 pressure washer. i got it used and theres no gfi receptacle on the end. someone took it off and put a regular 3 prong plug on it. when i plug it in and turn the water on the motor comes on but only stays on for a few seconds and shuts off. the pressure comes thru the machine but doesnt have stong enough pressure to kick the motor on and build up strong enough pressure to use the machine. i put it on a 50 ft hose with city water to make sure its getting enough water pressure. i was told it could be that theres no gfi receptacle but that doesnt sound right... anyone have any idea why i cant get strong enough pressure to make it work right..
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Old 07-07-2009, 10:27 PM   #6
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When using pressure washers


will a pressure washer work without a gfci on it. mine just has a standard 3 prong plug on it. someone took it off... mine wont stay on long enough to build up any pressuere.
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Old 07-13-2009, 04:19 AM   #7
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the pressure washer is shot... must be debris in the pump....
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Old 08-08-2009, 10:36 PM   #8
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When using pressure washers


...so a tornado knocked over like 4 trees in my yard. I sawed up everything but the stump and the rootballs. I thought well lets just use the pressure washer to blow off the clay and then saw up the roots. Well, lets just say the clay didn't come off as easily as I anticipated and it seemed like all the clay shot back directly on me. Not my proudest moment :-)
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Old 08-31-2009, 04:12 PM   #9
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When using pressure washers


Sometimes we have to revert back to when we were little boys and did things that were dangerous, we knew it, but we didn't care because it was fun. Case in point: I have a pressure washer unit with an 18 HP motor and is rated at 4200 PSI. I put the tip in the wand with just the little hole in it and actually cut a piece of 2 x 8 in half. No flip-flops with this baby. Thanks, David
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Old 07-19-2010, 05:57 PM   #10
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When using pressure washers


I have a noticeable scare on the outside hump of my left thumb right below the wrist from washing fiberglass patio chairs with my 3500 with the (I think) 45 degree tip. It was the one next to the soap tip. I was attempting to hold the chair while rotating it and spraying it off. Managed to touch my hand with the spray (momentarily) and it peeled a thin layer of skin back.
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Old 07-20-2010, 07:25 AM   #11
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When using pressure washers


I know a guy (everybody knows a guy, but in this case I really do know a guy) who lost the tips of 3 fingers to an industrial pressure washer. Not a lot, but about 1/2 way down the fingernail on the 3 smallest fingers on his left hand are clean-cut - just gone.
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Old 07-20-2010, 06:21 PM   #12
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When using pressure washers


Quote:
Originally Posted by boman47k View Post
I have a noticeable scare on the outside hump of my left thumb right below the wrist from washing fiberglass patio chairs with my 3500 with the (I think) 45 degree tip. It was the one next to the soap tip. I was attempting to hold the chair while rotating it and spraying it off. Managed to touch my hand with the spray (momentarily) and it peeled a thin layer of skin back.
Sounds like you have a MTM.
I have one too and you can write your name in concrete if you wanted to.
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Old 07-20-2010, 09:12 PM   #13
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When using pressure washers


Just a little Subaru 3500 psi with 5 hp. My wife put likea weird figure eight in my deck trying to use it. She hesitated a little while turning around or something.
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Old 07-27-2010, 12:20 AM   #14
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Thanks for writing this.
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Old 08-14-2010, 12:02 PM   #15
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When using pressure washers


Quote:
Originally Posted by Thurman View Post
Sometimes we have to revert back to when we were little boys and did things that were dangerous, we knew it, but we didn't care because it was fun. Case in point: I have a pressure washer unit with an 18 HP motor and is rated at 4200 PSI. I put the tip in the wand with just the little hole in it and actually cut a piece of 2 x 8 in half. No flip-flops with this baby. Thanks, David

If I'm ever in your neck of the woods can I come over to play?

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