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Power Washing #5243160 10/18/19 09:02 AM
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buster Offline OP
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I have an electric power washer I use for siding/deck etc. I thought about using it to clean the cars. I know you have to be careful with a pw but are there any advantages of using one instead of a regular garden hose? I can see it being beneficial on the wheels. They also use less water.


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Re: Power Washing [Re: buster] #5243170 10/18/19 09:19 AM
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I use one before I polish paint to remove the dirt that gets trapped in tight panel gaps.

The vibration from polishing can shake it out and then you're sanding. No bueno.


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Re: Power Washing [Re: buster] #5243171 10/18/19 09:19 AM
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Yes, they can remove sand and dirt from a very dirty vehicle without the mechanical scratching action that can happen with a brush.

There are a few surfactant products that can be "foamed" on prior to pressure washing. Some work very well to release dirt, some do not. I wish I had suggestions on the best products, but I can no longer aquire the alkaline "touchless" product that used to work for me. Many people tend to like the "Chemical Guys" products. I'm not so sure about them. They sure don't work like the commercial grade alkaline products like "Kleen Rite" presoak.


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Re: Power Washing [Re: buster] #5243174 10/18/19 09:22 AM
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buster Offline OP
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Thank for the tips, appreciate it.


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Re: Power Washing [Re: buster] #5243182 10/18/19 09:31 AM
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I prefer the coin op wash over the hand wash. The less you touch the car, the better.

Re: Power Washing [Re: painfx] #5243188 10/18/19 09:39 AM
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buster Offline OP
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Originally Posted by painfx
I prefer the coin op wash over the hand wash. The less you touch the car, the better.


True. I think one of the reasons my Mazda 3 still looked so good after 5 years was due to the fact that I didn't wash it so much. The paint was barely touched over the 5 year period.


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Re: Power Washing [Re: buster] #5243228 10/18/19 10:15 AM
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We met a New Yorker couple on a cruise and visited them last summer. He proudly announced that he had never washed his second generation Fit--probably about seven years. Scary looking, semi corroded paint which he corrected with a the heaviest, narrowest blast from his high pressure washer. Was too upset to take a close look at the results. The car was more or less white (as opposed to a rusty gray) when he was done. Who needs clear coat, it's just a fad. It's a Long Island kind of thing, I guess.


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Re: Power Washing [Re: buster] #5243286 10/18/19 11:11 AM
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double vanos Offline
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I would stay away from anything with really high pressure. I’m sure my 2600 psi pressure washer could damage paint no matter what you tried to do to use it. Water pressure here at the house is 90, so that does well enough for me. Using a high lubrication car shampoo and top of the line wash mitts will do more towards not damaging the paint than anything else. Blow the car dry, mop up anything else with a microfiber towel.


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Re: Power Washing [Re: buster] #5243289 10/18/19 11:13 AM
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DriveHard Offline
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They work great! Stay away from emblems and names, as they can take them off (this is actually how I usually take mine off on purpose!)


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Re: Power Washing [Re: buster] #5243346 10/18/19 12:09 PM
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I use an electric leaf blower to dry the cars.


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Re: Power Washing [Re: buster] #5243414 10/18/19 01:12 PM
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Ya, lower psi and try to stay 3-4 inches away from surface. Unless there is a chunk of mud etc...they can damage clear coat.


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Re: Power Washing [Re: buster] #5243417 10/18/19 01:13 PM
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And use wide path stream nozzle, where it’s in shape of a fan.


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Re: Power Washing [Re: buster] #5243425 10/18/19 01:27 PM
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I pre spray with ONR before power washing. Takes care of 70% to 80% of the dirt.

It means less water used, less stuff on the car that could scratch and wash mitt goes further before needing rinsing.


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Re: Power Washing [Re: buster] #5243429 10/18/19 01:31 PM
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I got a Sunjoe 2030 psi (doubt that PSI is true) that does well enough. Looking for an electric with greater GPM, as it takes a long time to work your way around a large vehicle at 1.76 GPM.

Works great on wheels & fender liners, where even the sharpest nozzles on the garden hose fall short.


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Re: Power Washing [Re: CharlieBauer] #5243495 10/18/19 02:44 PM
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Originally Posted by CharlieBauer
I pre spray with ONR before power washing.


ONR, the Office of Naval Research?

I guess you mean Optimum No Rinse. That's not likely to be a product designed as a pre-soak release agent. But if it works, it works.


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