Is It OK to Use a Pressure Washer on Rainy Day?

Many sites give their two cents about the safety issues in using a pressure washer during a rainy day. Some cleaning experts say don’t, while others say it’s OK. If you’re going to weigh in all arguments, you might suffer from a severe headache.

The short answer to this question is- it depends. Let’s discuss the factors that make pressure washing safe even during rainy days.

Pressure Washer

Using a Gas Pressure Washer in the Rain

Typically, a gas pressure washer is considered safer than the electric model because it can handle splashbacks and accidental water sprays from the machine itself.

To make sure that the device is safe to use in the rain, look for its UL (Underwriters Laboratories) rating. This information will tell you whether the machine is designed to hold up against the water and up to what pressure level it can handle. If the UL says the pressure washer is safe to use during the wet day, then it probably is. Make sure that you are using up-to-date washers with modern UL ratings.

However, take note that even if the UL says that the device is safe to use in the rain, prolonged exposure to water can potentially be harmful to the motor. If you can protect the motor part from being exposed to water, that can help. Also, let the device dry before storing to prevent moisture build-up, which can damage the motor.

Pressure Washer

Extreme Weather Conditions

A UL approval does not make the device automatically safe to use during severe weather conditions. There are some situations when using a gas pressure washer is dangerous to the machine and the user.

  • Heavy rainfall, strong winds, and lightning. In this condition, it’s safe to stay inside the house and wait for the weather to calm down.
  • With heavy rain, detergents can be washed away fast, which makes it harder for you to clean the area.
  • Heavy rainfall can make it hard for you to aim for the right spots. You can find the detergents blowing back on you or in the wrong places.
  • Lightning storms are dangerous not just to the machine but also to you. Don’t risk your life getting hit by lightning only to pressure wash your outdoors.

With all the situations above, under which weather conditions can you pressure wash?

If you’re not going to use a detergent, you can do pressure washing as long as the rain allows you to control the pressure washer wand with ease.

If you’re going to use a detergent, a slow drizzle or light rain is fine, so try to schedule pressure washing during a cloudy day. In this case, monitoring the weather can help you pick the right schedule to do the cleaning.

Pressure Washer

Safety Tips When Using Pressure Washer

Heavy rain or not, you still need to take safety precautions when using a pressure washer on wet conditions.

  • Make sure that no part is exposed to the water for a long period. If possible, keep the motor dry during the entire process.
  • Be mindful of the age of the equipment, be it a gas or electric-powered pressure washer. Typically, a machine that is more than 15 years old may not be suited to work in the rain anymore.
  • In terms of safety, a gas pressure washer is safer than electric models on rainy days. There is less chance of getting electrocuted when using gas versions. However, in normal weather conditions, electric power washers can perform better than gas models. Take a look at some of Cleanup.Expert top pick to see the advantages of using electric power washers.
  • Avoid pressure washing on days with heavy rain, thunder, and lightning.
  • If you’re not an experienced user of a pressure washer, wait for clear days as there could be safety measures that you might miss to put in place. If you’re not confident in using the device for the first time, better hire a professional to do the job and teach you the safety precautions first before you do it yourself.

If you’ve used the machine several times and you are aware of its safety precautions, then a little rain doesn’t have to stop you. In fact, overcast and rainy days are perfect for house washing.

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