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For who owns car, pavilion with garden, terrace... the pressure washer, or hydro-cleaner, is now part of the current tooling. But if this tool displays a power capable of taking off the stubborn stains, it can cause damage when misused.

Use a pressure washer

Power and potential risks of a hydro-cleaner

It is not enough to connect a hydro-cleaner and pull the trigger! Before becoming familiar with the device and its handling tips, one must consider its power and the potential risks associated with it. By simple negligence, accidents occur even at "low" pressures of 70 or 80 bar. Also, be careful: keep children away and never point the jet at an energized person, animal or electrical circuit.
This tool is actually a pump that significantly increases the pressure of the water distributed by the network or, for some models, from a tank or pond. Via a reinforced hose, the water is conveyed under high pressure, until a lance terminated by a nozzle. It is the shape of this which determines the concentration or the width of the jet.

High pressure cleaner: multiple applications

The pressure washer is useful on any fragile surface. It remains to determine their thresholds of resistance and to take certain precautions with the most tender or sensitive: wood, glass, limestone, painted or anodized elements, etc. Cleaning a surface is good... Without damaging it, it's better!

The range of functions and accessories is particularly wide. But among the many services rendered by these machines, it is still to discover: stripping paints, plaster and coated on all media; suppression of pests (mosses, molds, efflorescence, rising of cement, tar...) on the facades, roofs and terraces; uncoupling of pipes; removal of soil and weeds between sanding elements; masonry ; pumping; plant treatment, etc. Note: the most unusual uses require the purchase of specific accessories.

Nozzles

The lance is generally equipped as standard with a variable jet nozzle. It allows to choose between high and low pressure and to adjust the shape of the jet. A jet-pencil concentrates the power in one point. A flat stream diffuses fan at an angle of about 30°. From this angle, the ideal working distance is 15 to 20 cm between the nozzle and the surface to be cleaned. On certain pressure gauge cleaners, you will adjust the high pressure power depending on the hardness of the media. Otherwise, increase the distance to work smoothly on fragile materials. More and more widespread, the rotabuse concentrates the power. The original jet-pencil is associated with a rotating movement that makes it work in circles. Low pressure nozzles turn the spear into a watering apple.

Detergents

In cold water, washing without detergent is a challenge. An additional or integrated detergent tank with flow control is part of the basic equipment of high pressure cleaners. Choose a product adapted to the work undertaken, by referring to the indications of the can. Never dehumidify the substrate to be cleaned before spreading the detergent. With the lance set to "low pressure", always spray from the bottom to the top of the surface to be treated. Leave on for a few minutes, then without waiting for the drying, rinse this time with "high pressure". To soften the grease and increase the effectiveness of the detergent, feed the appliance with hot water (40 to 60° depending on the models).
Combining several chemical compounds, the commercial detergents are alkaline, neutral or acidic depending on the case. Their choice depends on the nature of the dirt and the surface to be cleaned. Alkalis dissolve fats, tars and oils, but deteriorate aluminum, zinc, paint... Neutrals are to be reserved for fragile substrates. Acids act on tartar, oxidation but attack limestone, cement, ferrous metals...

Commissioning of a hydro-cleaner

Be prepared, water and electricity rarely getting along well. First connect the water inlet hose to the fitting on the appliance. Make sure that your supply pipe is in good condition and that its diameter is sufficient (standard 19 mm). A minimum supply of 10 l / h is necessary for the proper functioning of a cleaner: check the flow of your water supply and open the faucet completely. On the inlet fitting, a filter strainer prevents impurities (sand, limestone, metal filings...) from entering the pistons of the high-pressure pump. Always check its presence and cleanliness.

For the electrical connection, take into account the voltage of the cleaner and the intensity tolerated by the socket. You will connect the most powerful devices (around 3000 W) to a socket protected by a suitable fuse (20 A) or, better, a 30 mA high-sensitivity differential circuit breaker. If the use of an extender is necessary, unroll it fully before starting, you will avoid the coil effect that heats the conductors. Take care that the projected water does not fall on the fitting! There are plastic protective shells. Otherwise, a bucket returned to the fitting, itself elevated, provides good security.

Walls, terraces, driveways

Feel free to power off, or seriously protect electrical wires, outlets and outdoor switches. Standard waterproof materials are moisture resistant, sometimes immersion resistant, but not pressure resistant. During heavy work, obstruct the air vents to prevent water from entering and protect the immediate surroundings that could suffer: massive, lawns, planters... by means of tarpaulins. On a painted surface, test the resistance of the paint to prevent peeling. Take into account the fragility of windows if you clean window surrounds. To work at height or on a roof, a hose extension eliminates the need to hoist the cleaner on the ladder or scaffold.
For regular maintenance, do not insist on the joints between the slabs or floor tiles: the detachments are quite frequent. As for sand-sealed pavers, you may see their joints disappear during cleaning. Finally, when moving the cleaner is necessary, pull it gently by the carrying handle, never by its pipe.

Wash a car with a pressure washer

Spray the detergent and let it work. Work preferably in the shade, drying too fast leaves traces difficult to eliminate. To scrub the body, use a soft scrub brush. Then a brush with hard bristles to effortlessly clean the rims. When rinsing, reduce the pressure or work at a sufficient distance (30 cm on average) to avoid damaging the paint.
The bent lance makes it possible to sprinkle the sills and reach every nook and cranny. Never use high pressure on the Blackson type covers protecting the underside of the car. Also to be avoided, motor cleaning: electrical and electronic circuits do not like this shock treatment. The power of the jet is likely to unclog oil amalgam that contribute to the tightness of old joints.

Diversify functions

Supplied or optional accessories expand the uses of the HP cleaner. The hydro-sanding kit allows, with special sand, to strip old paint and rust out garden tools and other metal parts. Do not forget to let the pickled surfaces dry before finishing.
The open-pipe consists of a nozzle mounted at the end of a flexible hose. It dissolves the plugs while self-propelling into the pipes thanks to side retro-jets. The spray nozzle allows trees or shrubs inaccessible to be sprayed with pre-diluted phytosanitary products.

Storage and maintenance

Turn off the water supply and pull the trigger to relieve the pressure in the circuit before putting the unit away. Lubricate the bayonet fittings at regular intervals. Wrap the high pressure hose without knots or breaks to prevent damage to the wire mesh. Store the device in a dry place. If it can not be stored free of frost, aspirate the pump with automotive antifreeze, based on propylene glycol.
Irregular pressure indicates clogging or scaling of the nozzle. Remove the hole with the cleaning needle, which is normally provided. The water inlet has a sieve filter, the cleanliness of which is also frequently checked. Most HP cleaners are now lubricated for life. It is therefore no longer necessary to regularly add oil or to perform periodic oil changes. A detail to check however on the instructions of the device! If necessary, always use the oil recommended by the manufacturer, and complete the slightest lack. At the risk of seeing the pistons seize, and the device will permanently deteriorate!

Anatomy

Anatomy

A: Carry handle
B: Connection pipe
C: hose reel
D: Electric cord
E: Cord winder
F: High pressure lance
G: Trigger
H: Security
I: Solid detergent reserve
J: High pressure hose
K: Liquid detergent tank
L: hose reel

The accessories

The accessories

A: Pipeline stripper
B: High pressure hose extension
C: Rotating brush
D: Angled lance
E: Handle
F: Rotabuse
G: Lance 3 functions
H: Swiveling spear
I: Spear Extensions

Water supply

Water supply

On the food side, a garden hose is enough. Just make sure it is not damaged. The slightest leakage would cause pressure drops that reduce efficiency.

Put the pump of a cleaner on the road

Put the pump of a cleaner on the road

The pump is started after the water connection, otherwise it may be damaged. A manometric system automatically turns off the engine when the trigger is released.

Protect the electrical connection

Protect the electrical connection

To prevent water from soaking the electrical connection, raise it over a brick or block, and cover it with a bucket or plastic bag. But there are hulls designed for this purpose.

Raise the pressure

Raise the pressure

On this model, simply turn the end of the lance a quarter of a turn to go from low to high pressure. The first position is for detergent spraying and rinsing.

High pressure safety

High pressure safety

In high pressure, the jet is much more concentrated. Do not get your hands too close to the nozzle, and consider the kickback at startup that can surprise on powerful machines.

Use a rotabuse

Use a rotabuse

The use of the rotabuse requires a certain control. Adjust the distance between the nozzle and the support according to the hardness of the nozzle. Perform a pretest in an invisible place.

Clean mortar joints

Clean mortar joints

On mortar joints, the lance must be held more than 15 or 20 cm. Otherwise, the power of the water would disintegrate them irremediably. Also be careful not to park too much in the same place.

Clean very hard surfaces

Clean very hard surfaces

On very hard surfaces, such as molded concrete steps, the distance can be shortened to emphasize a stubborn stain. Keep the lance at an incline of about 15°.

Clean in height

Clean in height

To clean in height, as under this advance of roofing, a tight seal is necessary. Rubber gloves, waxed and closed glasses will not be too much to protect you from water and projections.

Clean plastic seats

Clean plastic seats

Plastic seats are easy to clean under high pressure. Overlay several to resist the force of the jet, and give the angle of the lance to not attack too much material.

Clean a car with cold water

Clean a car with cold water

Detergent spray is required to clean the car in cold water. Here, the tank is filled with special body product, and the flow rate is adjusted thanks to the wheel integrated in the cap.

The rotating brush

The rotating brush

Less aggressive than the high-pressure jet, the rotating brush removes dirt, without damaging the paint or joints, always fragile. The force of the water turns the brush through a turbine.

Clean a trash

Clean a trash

For the cleaning of a trash, it is enough to stand back and to direct the jet towards the interior of this one. In doing so, you will not risk getting projections in the figure.

Unclogging hose

Unclogging hose

The outlet hose nozzle has jets facing rearward. He thus advances alone in the blocked pipe, but give him movements from front to back to free the obstruction.


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