Because water molecules have their own molecular charge, droplets stick to surfaces naturally. So pressure washers use narrow, high-pressure jets of water, often mixed with soaps or detergents, that actively break down dirt and debris, to clean hard surfaces without using abrasive techniques.
But this cleaning power is just the beginning of what a good high pressure washer has to offer. From the mundane to the mysterious, here are 10 time-saving uses for a high pressure washer.
1. Cleaning the BBQ
That’s not “flavour” left clinging to your grill racks after the BBQ’s spent a winter in storage. It’s gunk. And it’s got no business sticking around for next summer’s first big cook-up.
Scrubbing your BBQ clean by hand is one way of doing it. But a method that usually results in mess, sore wrists and a sooty burgers.
Using your pressure washer to blast off last season’s grease and grime is a faster, more efficient way of getting your BBQ back in top shape.
All you need to do is wheel it onto the lawn. Remove the drip tray. Disconnect the gas bottle and seal off the gas hoses. Pre-soak any baked on fatty surfaces with a food-grade kitchen or BBQ degreaser. Then simply wash the grease and grime away with your pressure washer. Once it’s dried; season your hot plates so they’re ready to go at a moment’s notice.
2. Garage floors and driveway
Both get used on a daily basis. So, over time, that’s a lot of oil, grease and road grime that can build up in just a small area. Or even stain if left unattended.
Using a high pressure washer on a regular basis to keep driveways and garage floors clean is a simple way to maintain the look and value of your property, keep stains from forming, and everybody on the street jealous of your front yard.
Specialist attachments like the Surface Cleaner make jobs like this a breeze, allowing you to clean large surfaces with fewer movements, fine tune the pressure at the head for greater control, and clean both vertical and horizontal surfaces.
3. The deck
When the weather's nice, it’s your home-base. The BBQ (freshly pressure washed) is smoking. And you’ve got a handful of your best mates around for an afternoon.
But that can also mean more foot traffic on the deck, work boots crusted in mud and grass clippings, and gym shoes sticky with who-knows-what.
Because pressure washers use concentrated high-pressure jets of water, sometimes mixed with mild detergents like this stone and wood cleaner , they’re completely safe to use on all wooden surfaces like your deck.
As a general rule, it’s a good idea to give all wooden decking a thorough cleaning at least once a year. Especially after months of little use where a slippery layer of grime may have formed. Or during the colder months where mold and moss forms in shaded areas.
High pressure washers are great for blasting away the dirt and lingering mildew that would otherwise make decks slippery when it started to rain.
Start by using as low a pressure as possible to avoid causing any damage to the wood. Keep your spray about 100cm from the deck surface and work it side to side in a gentle, sweeping motion.
Work with the grain of your wood. And from the house outward with your spray. This will help give you an even clean without visible edges or spotty surfaces.
4. Walkways and front entrance ways
Decks aren’t the only surfaces that benefit from a good pressure wash. Walkways and front entrance stairs need a high-pressure wash down every once in a while too.
It’s one of the easiest ways to really make your home safer, and look better. Beyond clearing dirt and debris from a prominent area just in front of your home, the jet streams of a high pressure washer can also help prevent moss and other unwanted organic life from growing in between the bricks and tiles. Reducing slip hazards.
Even the toughest stains on outdoor tiles can usually be removed with the power of a high pressure washer plus some soap or detergent mix.
5. The exterior of your home
Brick, wood and clad home exteriors may as well be magnets for dirt, grime and mold, particularly in Australia’s harsh and wildly varying climates.
It doesn’t take long for even the brightest colours to fade. Especially during winter months when the weather can be less than friendly.
High pressure washers are one of the best ways to keep the outsides of our homes clean, year round, even when the weather isn’t cooperating.
You’ll want to be sure the area around where you’ll be working is clear. Move any tools or kids toys that could be tripping hazards out of the way.
For a job like this, always wear protective eyewear. Loosened items blasted by the spray, could cause injury if eyes aren’t properly protected.
Fences spend 100% of their time outdoors - exposed to the elements - and some of the hardest punishment a structure made from wood, wire or metal can take. The thing is; even weather resistant colourbond fences will corrode if dirt or garden matter is allowed to build up in the bottom.
High pressure washers are an efficient way of washing down your fences because you can cover such a large surface area and distance in such a short amount of time and with relative ease.
They’re the best way to keep wooden fences looking brand new. Since wood is soft, you’ll only want to use moderate pressure and a mild detergent. Work in sections to ensure surfaces are thoroughly rinsed. If your fence absorbs soap or detergent, it can dry out the wood.
Once your fence has had at least 48 hours to dry, apply a fresh coat of paint or sealant to further protect the wood from sun, wind and other weather damage.
7. Gutter cleaning
Nobody likes cleaning gutters. It’s awkward. There are ladders involved. The whole thing is a mess. But once the rainy season comes, you could find yourself in a bad spot if those gutters haven’t been, well, gutted.
Attachments like the angled spray lance make the task of cleaning your gutters easier, quicker and safer. Start by using the high pressure washer’s powerful jet streams to loosen stubborn sections of broken down leaf matter. Remove the bulk of the debris by hand, particularly if your gutters are heavily blocked. Then, once you’ve cleared the bulk of the material, run over the same area a second time to wash down the gutter for a final cleaning.
The extra-large, extra powerful Husqvarna PW 460’s purposeful design is the ultimate, tough cleaning pressure washer, perfect for robust tasks like gutter cleaning.
8. Flying insect nests
It’s never fun to accidentally stumble upon one of these. High pressure washers are great for cleaning aware termite tracks, wasp and ants nests, spider webs, as well as other stubborn pest dwellings.
Treat the area with a suitable pesticide first, then your high pressure washer will make for one of the most convenient ways to down a swinging insect nest once the buzzing pests inside have been dealt with.
9. Mowers and garden tools
When cleaning your lawn mower with a pressure washer, you’ll want to begin at the top. Give it a quick spray with degreaser and let sit for a good 5 to 10 minutes before rinsing away at medium pressure. Then, slowly washing from the top down, guide your washer nozzle around water sensitive components like the engine’s air intake, spark plug, fuel tank and breathers.
The same goes for any lawn and garden tool that gets used on a regular basis. Regular use requires regular cleaning. And nothing gives your mower and other garden tools a quick, even clean like a high pressure washer.
10. Vehicle upkeep
From road grime on your daily commute to mud-caked 4WDs back after a weekend camping. High pressure washers are a great way to give vehicles of all types the kind of quick, regular clean ups they need in order to keep running strong.
Whether they’re used off-road or strictly on the bitumen, our vehicles, are in almost constant contact with dirt and grime. And while it’s impossible to get to them with the old soap n’ sponge every day, high pressure washers represent the quick, easy way to maintain that factory finish.
When washing your vehicle, start with a pre-rinse, washing off all heavy dirt and grime. This ensures that when you are sponging down the duco, you don’t accidentally leave swirl marks in the paint. Use your pressure washer to get into hard to clean areas like the door jams, inner wheel wells, brakes, and grilles. Then give the whole vehicle a rinse, working from the top down, before a final chamois dry to finish.