Guide to Electric Pressure Washer TroubleShooting

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Users guide to electric pressure washer troubleshooting

Electric Pressure Washer Motor Will Not Start or Run.

Is the pressure washer power cord plugged into the wall outlet properly?

Has the "On-Off" switch or button on your machine been accidentally set to the "OFF" position?

Is there power in the wall outlet, or has a fuse blown or circuit breaker been tripped?

If a fuse has blown or circuit breaker tripped, replace the fuse or reset breaker. Your machine should now start.
If the fuse or breaker goes after you have replaced or reset, try plugging your machine into a different outlet.
an eectric washer requires a good supply of power with no other high amperage draw appliances running on the same circuit.
High amperage appliances such as refrigerators, coffee machines, heaters, motors, etc. running on the same circuit as your pressure washer will cause fuses to blow or breakers to trip.

Are you using an extension cord on your 110 volt machine?

If so, it must be 12 gauge wire if over 25 feet in length. Using any length of 16, 18 or lighter gauge extension cord will not supply enough power to your pressure washer and the motor will not start or run properly. This will also cause your fuse to blow or circuit breaker to trip. Running an electric pressure washer on a light-duty extension cord will cause permanent damage to internal switches and/or electric motor.

Does your 220 volt machine have sufficient incoming voltage?

In many instances problems are caused by low line voltage and erratic operation is the result of low voltage being supplied to the machine. Voltage should not vary more than +/- 5% of Voltage requirements.

After performing these checks and machine will not operate, you need professional service.




Electric Pressure Washer Motor Makes Humming Sound, Then Stops

Are you using an extension cord on your 110 volt machine?
If so, it must be 12 gauge wire if over 25 feet in length. Using any length of 16, 18 or lighter gauge extension cord will not supply enough power to your pressure washer and the motor will not start or run properly.
This will also cause your fuse to blow or circuit breaker to trip.
Running your pressure washer on a light-duty extension cord will cause permanent damage to internal switches and/or electric motor.

Has a fuse blown or circuit breaker been tripped?
If a fuse has blown or circuit breaker tripped, replace the fuse or reset breaker. Your machine should now start.
If the fuse or breaker goes after you have replaced or reset, try plugging your machine into a different outlet.

An electric pressure washer requires a good stable supply of power with no other high amperage draw appliances running on the same circuit.
High amperage appliances such as refrigerators, coffee machines, heaters, motors, etc. running on the same circuit as your pressure washer will cause fuses to blow or breakers to trip.

Does your 220 volt machine have sufficient incoming voltage?

In many instances problems are caused by low line voltage and erratic operation is the result of low voltage being supplied to the machine.

Is the water in your pump frozen?

Exposing your pressure washer to sub-freezing temperatures will freeze any water inside the pump which causes the motor to momentarily hum, then stop. In most cases, your circuit breaker will trip or fuse will blow.

Never store your pressure washer in an area where the machine, wand or hoses can freeze. Freezing can cause permanent damage to your pressure washer.

After performing these checks and machine will not operate, you need professional service.




Electric Pressure Washer Runs, Then Stops And Starts Intermittently.

Are you using an extension cord on your 110 volt machine?

If so, it must be 12 gauge wire if over 25 feet in length. Using any length of 16, 18 or lighter gauge extension cord will not supply enough power to your pressure washer and the motor will not start or run properly. This will also cause your fuse to blow or circuit breaker to trip.

Running your pressure washer on a light-duty extension cord will cause permanent damage to internal switches and/or electric motor.

Does your 220 volt machine have sufficient incoming voltage?

In many instances problems are caused by low line voltage and erratic operation is the result of low voltage being supplied to the machine.

Is the nozzle damaged?

Some operators mistakenly use the end of the wand as a chisel when removing heavy soil deposits from equipment and may have damaged the nozzle. If so, the nozzle needs to be replaced. If your application calls for removing heavy oil and grease accumulations a hot water pressure washer would be more suitable for this type of work. Or, a turbo style rotary nozzle will help.

Is the high pressure nozzle the correct diameter for your machine?

Installing a nozzle with an orifice too large or small in diameter will affect performance and operation dramatically.

Have you added an extension hose?

Long lengths of extra hose can cause back-pressure and this causes erratic operation. Adding an extension hose too small in diameter can also affect performance. If you replaced or added hose from a different manufacturer ensure that the hose and all connection fittings are of sufficient diameter for your machine.

After performing these checks and machine will not operate, you need professional service.




Electric Motor Emits A Burning Smell or Electric Arc Can Be Heard or Seen

Your machine needs professional service by a qualified service technician.





Electric Pressure Washer Runs, No Water Coming From Nozzle

Is your water tap turned on?

Check the tap to ensure there is a good flow of water to the pressure washer.

Is your garden hose connected to the pressure washer properly?

Recheck all your connections.

Does your garden hose have a kink or bend in it somewhere?

This will stop the water flow to your machine and will stop the water from coming out the nozzle.

Is there debris stuck in the nozzle at the end of the wand?

Use Caution: before checking this, unplug your machine and disconnect the water supply or injury could result.

Is there debris or blockage at the garden hose inlet fitting on the pressure washer?

Dirt, debris, twisted or broken garden hose washers can block the water supply to your machine. Dirt will also harm the pump.

Has water frozen in the incoming hose or high pressure hose?

Never store your pressure washer in an area where the machine, wand or hoses can freeze. Freezing can cause permanent damage to your pressure washer.

After performing these checks and machine will not operate, you need professional service.




Electric Motor Runs, Low Pressure Output

Read your owner's manual and observe all safety precautions. The solution to your problem is most likely in the manual.

Is there enough water being supplied to your pressure washer?

Check your hose for blockage, kinks or any other type of restriction. Make sure your tap is turned open all the way.

Is there debris or blockage at the garden hose inlet fitting on the pressure washer?

Dirt, debris, twisted or broken garden hose washers can block the water supply to your machine. Dirt will also harm your pump. Dirt and sand can enter the pressure washer pump by drawing water directly from a lake, well, or contaminated container. The threaded ends of garden hoses placed in a sandy or dirty area can also introduce sufficient abrasive material to permanently damage your pump.

Does the high pressure hose have a kink or bend in it?

This will reduce the amount of pressure from coming out the nozzle.

Is there debris stuck in the nozzle at the end of the wand?

Use Caution: before checking this, unplug your machine and disconnect the water supply or injury could result.

Is the high pressure nozzle orifice sized correctly for your machine?

Installing a nozzle with an orifice too large or small will affect performance and operation.

Is the nozzle damaged?

Some operators mistakenly use the end of the wand as a chisel when removing heavy soil deposits from equipment and may have damaged the nozzle.

If so, the nozzle needs replacement.
If your application calls for removing heavy oil and grease accumulations a hot water pressure washer would be more suitable for this type of work. Or, a turbo rotary nozzle will help.

Many models have a dual-purpose(Hi-Low) nozzle. Check to see if the nozzle has been accidentally rotated to the low-pressure detergent application position.

Are you using an extension cord on your 110 volt machine?

If so, it must be 12 gauge wire if over 25 feet in length. Using any length of 16, 18 or lighter gauge extension cord will not supply enough power to your pressure washer and the motor will not start or run properly. This will also cause your fuse to blow or circuit breaker to trip. Running your pressure washer on a light-duty extension cord will cause permanent damage to internal switches and/or electric motor.

Does your 220 volt machine have sufficient incoming voltage?

In many instances problems are caused by low line voltage and erratic operation is the result of low voltage being supplied to the machine.

Has your machine been connected to a hot water supply?

Incoming water over 140 degrees (F) will cause damage to your pump. If so, have your machine serviced by a qualified service technician. If you require an electric pressure washer that accepts incoming hot water over 140 degrees then perhaps a machine that makes hot water on its own would be more suitable.

After performing these checks and machine will not operate, you need professional service.






Electric Motor Runs, Erratic Pressure Output

Is air being introduced into your pump from a poor garden hose connection?

Check to see that all your connections are tight and not leaking water.

Is there enough water being supplied to your pressure washer?

Check your hose for blockage, kinks or any other type of restriction.
Make sure your tap is turned open all the way.

Is there debris or blockage at the garden hose inlet fitting on the pressure washer?

Dirt, debris, twisted or broken garden hose washers can block the water supply to your machine.
Dirt will also harm your pump.

Dirt and sand can enter the pressure washer pump by drawing water directly from a lake, well, or contaminated container.

NOTE:The threaded ends of garden hoses placed in a sandy or dirty area can also introduce sufficient abrasive material to permanently damage your pump.

Is there debris stuck in the nozzle at the end of the wand?

Caution: before checking this, unplug your machine and disconnect the water supply or injury could result.

Is the high pressure nozzle the correct diameter for your machine?

Installing a nozzle with an orifice that is too large or small in diameter will affect performance and operation.

Have you added an extension hose?

Long lengths of extra hose can cause back-pressure and this causes erratic operation. Adding extension hose too small in diameter can also affect performance. If you've added an exact manufacturer's extension hose, try a nozzle with a slightly larger larger orifice.
For example, replace a .036 nozzle with a .038 or .040. Your dealer can assist you. If you replaced or added hose with a non-OEM product, ensure the hose and all connection fittings are of sufficient diameter for your machine.

Are you using an extension cord on your 110 volt machine?

If so, it must be 12 gauge wire if over 25 feet in length.
Using any length of 16, 18 or lighter gauge extension cord will not supply enough power to your pressure washer and the motor will not start or run properly. This will also cause your fuse to blow or circuit breaker to trip.

Running your pressure washer on a light-duty extension cord will cause permanent damage to internal switches and/or electric motor.

Does your 220 volt machine have sufficient incoming voltage?

In many instances problems are caused by low line voltage and erratic operation is the result of low voltage being supplied to the machine. Voltage should be within +/- 5%

After performing these checks and machine will not operate, you need professional service.








Water Leaking From Inside Machine

Has your machine been stored over the winter in an environment where it can freeze?

If so, a pump component has probably been frost-damaged and requires professional service.

Never store your pressure washer in any environment where it can freeze.

Do not operate your pressure washer if there is internal leakage as this water could cause further damage to electrical components.

Turn the machine off and have it serviced by a professional technician.

Caution: Do not attempt to disassemble your pressure washer! Serious injury could result. Only qualified service technicians are trained to service internal components and electrical systems.








Water Leaking From Hose, Wand or Nozzle

Caution: Unplug machine and turn off water supply before checking any leaking connections.

Are all your connections tight?

Check the hose to machine fitting, machine to high-pressure hose fitting, and any wand connection fittings to ensure they are tight and leak-free.

Any water leakage will affect the performance of your pressure washer.

"O" rings are easily replaced.

Is there a hole or holes in your high-pressure hose?

These holes are usually punctures caused by driving a heavy vehicle over the hose with sharp or abrasive objects underneath.

Hoses cannot be repaired, they must be replaced.

After performing these checks and machine will not operate, you need professional service.

Poor or Slow Cleaning Results

Is the operator trying to clean too quickly?

Heavy accumulations sometimes require more time than usual in order for the high pressure cutting action to be effective.

You might try a turbo nozzle which concentrates the fan spray into a rotating pencil-jet pattern and yields faster cleaning results.

Cold water pressure washers have difficulty in applications where there are grease, oil, fat, or petroleum accumulations.

Cold water tends to "bounce off" these deposits and more chemical is used in order to compensate for this problem.

On grease and oil it acts just like washing your hands, hot water works substantially better.

A hot water pressure washers can save time and money in these conditions.

Machine Not Achieving Advertised Pressure

In order for your pressure washer to produce maximum pressure, the incoming voltage must match the motor requirements.

For example, a 240 volt machine requires 240 volts power to achieve full pressure. Any drop in voltage supply results in a corresponding reduction in pressure output. This is not a machine defect.


Find Karcher Electric Pressure Washer Service Dealers Here

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