Powere washer psi?

Discussion in 'General Harley Davidson Topic' started by Rabid Ranger, Jul 29, 2009.

  1. Rabid Ranger

    Rabid Ranger Member

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    I took my bike in for maintenance at my local dealer. When it was done it was washed at a wash station with a pressure washer with a soap nozzle and then blow dried with the HD drier. It was a pretty good job. My question is what is a recommended pressure for this type of cleaning?

    Thanks in advance!

    RR
     
  2. hntwrobin

    hntwrobin Active Member

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    I wouldn't use a pressure washer! Not good for any gaskets or seals on the bike. :31:
     
  3. glider

    glider Veteran Member

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    Power washers aren't a good choice for washing a bike. The dealer does it to save time but the force of the water when using a power washer forces water into places that it shouldn't be.
    The areas of the bike like plug connectors and many other places will stand up to riding in the rain but the power washer is a different story and you are looking for a problem using one. There are some that will tell you "I use them all the time" but it still is a bad choice.
     
  4. WHM1

    WHM1 Junior Member

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    I only wash my bikes with a power washer maybe 3 times a year and only after a long trip of 3/5 thousand miles. Many here say do not do it but I have never had a problem. I am very careful not to get water under the seat and after wahing take the seat off to check and to clean under there as well. There is some much road grime and bugs/tar it is much better to wash with my power washer. After using a power washer I always apply a good coat of wax and use Pledge after regular wash jobs. My bike has a custom paint job that was expensive and I have NEVER had a problem with power washing it.
     
  5. The4opps1

    The4opps1 Junior Member

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    I have never used a power washer to clean my bike, but have used them for years for other "household" tasks. If used correctly, they are a help, but you have to realize that these units can not only create a lot of nozzle pressure, but, you can adjust the stream to where it's almost pinpoint, generating a whole lot of impact. Therein, IMO, is the key. Using them correctly.....
     
  6. Rabid Ranger

    Rabid Ranger Member

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    Re: Power washer psi?

    I watched the kid who washed my bike closely and as well as several other bikes without concern. I could not see the unit, but it was an industrial grade control head with a seperate soap nozzle much like a standard "hotsi" unit. The pressure seemed much lower that what I use weekly to clean a Boston Whaler patrol boat hull, interior and engine well. This hotsi puts out 110degree water at about 1600psi.

    So the consensus appears to be "not"? I'm a bit perplexed. Touted here has been the blow dry method after washing.......so I guess the preferred washing method for a dirty and muddy bike is "hose and brush".

    I am very familiar with the damage a "real" pressure washer can do. I have been trained to use a 3000+psi unit with 140deg water that will if not properly used, will blow out gaskets, remove paint, decals and trim from a boat. I would never consider using this buster to wash a bike.

    However, there are some very tame units available with Hp and Lp settings Lp being about 700 to 750 psi.

    This is the type of unit I was thinking about. So again the question....for those who do use a "power washer" what is the psi of the unit you use?

    RR
     
  7. PEKAY

    PEKAY Member

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    Don't Do It. Even a spray nossle on a garden hose is unnecessary. Just use the free flowing water from the hose without an end attachment. You're rinsing, not sand blasting. If you absolutely can't be talked out of using a pressure washer, then at least use one that allows you to adjust the psi to a low setting. I own a 2,500 psi pressure washer, and I use it for cleaning many different things, and it's great to have one around, but you'll never see me point it at my bike! Not ever! It's overkill. Match the tool for the job.
     
  8. horizonchaser

    horizonchaser Senior Member Contributor

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    When I bought my very first power washer about 10 years ago I was under the impreesiopn that it was the answer to my prayers. That I would wash my car (and bike) and everything would come span clean and i would hardly get my hands wet. Fact is, it didn't wash everything off satifactorily. I still needed to use a soft, shhepskin washers mitt to get the dirt off. Eventually I abandoned the power washer method and found out that the only way that I could do a good job was with a garden hose (to GENTLY) rinse off the surface dust. And having the pressure coming out of the nozzle no more that a heavy rain coming straight down on the bike. Next I would dip my all nylon brush (I want to emphasize that this is a nonmarring brush, very soft) into a bucket of soapy water, and soap it up. These brushes are excellent as they get in the nooks and crannies better that a sponge or mitt, I feel. Lastly, I use a Metro Air Force Blaster to dry it. Again, be very carefull where you force the air. And I wax it all off with Pledge, naturally! :s
     
  9. speedyron

    speedyron Active Member

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    Are you going motocross here? I've never gotten my bike dirty enough to warrant the use of a pressure washer. Even after going thru dirt roads and road construction have I ever needed any thing but a garden hose. Even with the hose I regulate the nozzle to be very light spray. I'm affraid of the sand and grit penetrating the paint let alone the gaskets. we talk all the time of not using dirty rags to detail so why blow sand onto your paint. Just plain overkill. Is it just to save time? I just dont understand.
     
  10. butchhd

    butchhd Member

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    Get your bike nice and wet then take a bucket with Dawn dishwashing liquid on it and cover the bike in suds let it soak in nice then hand wash it, the dawn cuts road grease realnice and rinses perfect with very little garden hose pressure and then hit it with a leafblower and dry her off nice.