4 Tips for How to Store and Winterize Your Pressure Washer

As temperatures start to dip and old man winter begins to make himself comfortable, there’s one piece of outdoor equipment you definitely don’t want to neglect: your pressure washer. Properly winterizing and storing your pressure washer will save you time and headaches come spring – you’ll be glad you put a little effort in now to save a lot of effort later!

Four-step pressure washer winterization and storage process:

First and foremost: Whenever handling a pressure washer – even for maintenance and storage – use proper eye protection.

  1. Protect your engine.

    If you have a gas powered pressure washer, add fuel stabilizer. All engines need protection when they’re being stored for long periods of time. Gasoline can go stale in as little as 30 days and can lead to internal component failures and costly repairs. Adding fuel stabilizer prevents rust, corrosion and build-up from deteriorating gasoline.

  2. Flush and drain your machine.

    Make sure you flush out all leftover cleaning solutions from your detergent tank. You definitely don’t want that hanging around all winter. To do this:

    1. Read and follow all instructions and warnings provided in the operator’s manual.
    2. Connect hoses and turn on water supply.
    3. If there is detergent remaining in the tank, run the unit with the supplied soap nozzle until no detergent remains
    4. To remove remaining detergent in the system, place the detergent siphoning tube into a pail of clean water and run with the supplied detergent nozzle for two minutes
    5. Turn off the engine and main water supply; release trapped pressure by aiming spray gun in a safe direction and squeeze trigger.
    6. Once the unit is cool, disconnect any hoses from spray gun and high pressure outlet on pump and drain. Use a rag to wipe off the hose
    7. Store accessories and pull the recoil handle six times to empty the pump of liquids
  3. Safeguard the pump system.

    Prevent rust, freeze damage and keep the pistons safe by adding Pump Saver anti-freeze and lubricant. Read and follow all instructions and warnings provided on the Pump Saver container. If Pump Saver is not available, you can follow a manual anti-freeze and lubricant process:

    1. Connect a short garden hose (about 3 feet) to the water inlet adapter
    2. Pour RV anti-freeze (anti-freeze without alcohol) into the hose
    3. Be sure engine is turned off then pull recoil handle twice to finish and disconnect the hose
  4. Store

    Clean off all dirt, grime and moisture from the exterior, then store in a cool, dry place.

As always, be sure to refer to your operator’s manual before using outdoor power equipment. Want more info? Check out more in-depth pressure washer winterization care how-to article or, watch the two-minute video below to see winterization in action.

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NOTICE: Customer service questions are not monitored via the blog. If you need assistance with your Briggs & Stratton engine or power equipment, please contact our Answer Center or post your question to our User Community.