How Long Can You Run a Pressure Washer?

How Long Can You Run a Pressure Washer?Pressure washers are machines used to do cleaning, and they are powered by an electrical motor or gas engine. It is the nature of every device that when it works for a long time, it gets heated. Every machine has its limitations, and like that, a pressure washer should also not be used for a long time. Just like ourselves who need a break and sleep after a long working day, pressure washers also need rest, and if you do not provide them the rest, they can stop working, or their performance will be affected.

In this article, we will see how long we can run the pressure washer and why we should not exceed that.

How Long Can A Pressure Washer Run?

To understand the run time of the pressure washer, first, we need to understand how it works. When the pressure washer is working, and the trigger is pressed. The water will be coming out of the nozzle with pressure; when the trigger is released, the pressure will start accumulating inside the pressure washer and pressurize the internal surface. Many pressure washers have an intelligent engine that only works when you press the trigger, and the machine goes on idle mode when the trigger is released.

The best strategy is to run the pressure washer for 5 to 10 minutes before leaving it to rest and overheat. Using the pressure washer without any stop decreases the working efficiency and increases the chances of overheating. It can be said that overheating is the most significant contributor to all of the problems of pressure washers.

Based on different pressure washers, the run time is also different. Most pressures are recommended to use not for more than 10 minutes, while some heavy-duty pressure washers can last for 15 to 20 minutes nonstop.

Why Does The Pressure Washer May Overheat?

Sometimes, there are conditions when using the pressure washer is cut to 3 to 4 minutes due to excess generation of heat. This problem should be solved immediately. Otherwise, the pressure washer will cease to work. These are the problems that can cause to limit the run time of the pressure washer.

Hot Water

It is natural that when you use hot water pressure washing, the pressure washer unit will take the heat from it and will heat up more quickly. It is better to run the pressure washer for a short interval when using hot water.

Mechanical Problem

Mechanical problems, most commonly the friction in the moving part due to the lack of oil or the oil getting too old, can also be the reason for overheating that limits the working of the pressure washer. The oil in the pressure washer should be changed every 50 hours of usage.

Not Enough Water

If the house of the inlet can not produce the required flow rate of the pressure washer, it will force the pressure washer into taking excess air. The lack of water creates overheating that should be resolved quickly.

Gas Problems

It is common in gas pressure washers. Using the unrecommended fuel or the power at excessive pressure can cause an overheating problem in the engine that is transmitted to the whole body. It is better to check the fuel requirement and specifications of the pressure washer before filling the fuel.

Wrong Use

The inexperienced person’s improper use of the pressure washer may also cause the overheating of the machine. Improperly connected equipment or the wrong setting of the unloader valve may also cause the pressure washer to overheat.


Most pressure washers have a thermostat to regulate the temperature. A malfunction in the thermostat may also cause the pressure washer to overheat


Thus it is concluded that pressure washers do not have to be used too long. 5 to 10 minutes is the maximum time to run it continuously.Moreover it is not good to leave the pressure washer running when the trigger is released. When you are cleaning with the pressure washer, water is constantly running through it, which helps in cooling the pump and engine to a great extent. When the pressure trigger is released, the water is accumulated in the pump that starts to overheat due to the constant working of the pressure washer. This water can damage the pressure washer and reduce the hose integrity as many hoses are not built to bear high temperatures.So by using some easy tips and tricks  you can  save your pressure washer from overheating.

Jose Kelly