Can Pressure Washers Damage Your Car Paint?

Do you wash your car with a pressure washer? Perhaps you might be having concerns whether it damages your car paint. Read through to find the answers you need.

Can Pressure Washers Damage Your Car Paint?

Whether you wash your car by hand or with a hose, there is always an advantage of using pressure washers instead. This is not only due to the efficiency they offer in removing hard stains but also due to their ease of use. Indeed, using pressure washers is far more time saving and with less manual effort as compared to washing by hand. What’s more, it has been proven to use less water than any other traditional method.

Even so, there are always concerns, especially with young drivers or those who have newly repainted their cars. Their biggest concern is whether or not it can damage their vehicle’s paint. Of course, if you have paid keen attention to the majority of the pressure washers in use nowadays, you will certainly lay concerns on the vehicle’s exterior paint. The brutal force applied to these pressure washers is enough to pity your car’s coat.

Although this method is indeed efficient, many people have taken to social media and other online platforms such as pressure washer reviews and light duty pressure washer reviews to seek answers as to whether these washers are safe and if they can cause damages to their car paint. Truth is, they can actually damage your paint- if not used properly. For these reasons, I have prepared a simple guideline on how you can safely use these washers without worrying about damaging your car paint. If you follow this guideline, there is no doubt you will be smiling all the way as you wash your car.

Pressure washer guideline- choosing a safe washer

Nowadays, trying to find the best electric pressure washer is quite a daunting task. Some pressure washers are extremely powerful whereas others have nozzles that can easily damage your car’s body paint. Moreover, even with the numerous selections in the market, it is possible to get your ideal pressure washer. Follow this advice to help you make the right purchase.


  • Choose a pressure washer with a variety of nozzles. Note that nozzles are a key component in determining the amount of pressure, the width of application, or even the concentration of pressure. It is, therefore, necessary to choose a machine with a variety of nozzles that will help you figure out the best nozzle that will work best for your car.
  • Preferably, choose a car washer with a long hose. It is advisable to choose a car washer that is at least 5 meters. Shorter hoses tend to get stuck or drag against your car, which can cause scratches.
  • Seek for a pressure washer with an in-built soap container. Although the majority of the pressure washers being sold today have a built-in supplementary kit for detergent or soap, there are still several models without it. Choose a washer with one or multiple containers. You will avoid carrying extra containers, thus saving you time and energy.

Dos and don’ts while washing your car

Now that you have a hint of the best pressure washer to use, take a peek at some of the things you should and should not do when washing your car.

  • Don’t use your pressure washer to wash your car’s engine. You might damage your engine as some parts should not be exposed to water.
  • Carefully choose the strength of your pressure washer. Some parts are best exposed to low pressures than others. For instance, tire sidewalls can be easily damaged by high pressures.
  • When switching on your pressure washer, direct your washer jet to the ground. The first blast is always stronger and might damage your vehicle’s paint.
  • Don’t use rotary nozzle attachments. They are too powerful and might cause damages to your paintwork.


How to wash your car safely

Well, now that you know the right appliance to purchase and what to and not to do, it’s time to try using it the safe way and avoid damages. Here’s a set-by-step guide for you:

#Step 1 – Carefully clean off debris and excess dirt. Adjust your washer to a broader spray nozzle to remove the top layer dirt.

#Step 2 – Apply detergent or foaming soap. Use the broader spray nozzle to apply detergent, but don’t let it sit for long to avoid streaking.

#Step 3 – Rinse the detergent and the remaining dirt. Use a high-pressure nozzle to carefully wash away all the remaining dirt and detergent. Also, avoid using high-pressure settings that might damage your car and always maintain a safer distance of about 3-5 meters.


Going to work or simply driving around with a clean car gives a positive impression to passersby and other road users. What’s more, it provides a comfortable feel for a clean environment. Therefore, purchasing a good pressure washer that will guarantee that your vehicle will remain spotlessly clean is necessary. Follow this guideline and you never have to worry about dirt on your car or pressure washers damaging your precious car paint.