Do all pressure washers need an outside tap?

We love pressure washers. We love how they’re able to clean concrete, walls, cars, outdoor furniture, and everything else of muck in just minutes. The thing is, they all seem to need to be attached to an outdoor tap to work, and not everyone has an outdoor tap available to them. Don’t worry – you don’t have to keep watching YouTube videos to get the satisfying feeling of seeing grime vanished in only moments.

Fortunately, there are portable pressure washers that have built-in water tanks, negating the need for outdoor taps. Even for the washers that do require a tap, it is not required that the source come from an outdoor tap.

There are several different options for you depending on your needs and what you already have availabe to you. If you’re looking to buy a pressure washer or if you already have one, you’ll need to know and choose from what source you wish to supply it water.

Portable Pressure Washers

The simplest way around using an outdoor tap is to use a portable pressure washer. These types of pressure washers were designed specifically to be portable and unattached to walls through power cords or water sources, and therefore have water tanks included. They will often have wheels for mobility because lugging along a ton of water would get rather heavy. These can be very convenient for people who need a pressure washer to go whereever they do or who don’t have access to any taps.

The downside of these, however, is that they can and will run out of water after time, so if you have a project that covers a lot of area, you may have to refill the pressure washer several times before you’re through.

Regular Pressure Washers

If you’re unsure if a portable pressure washer is right for you, or if you already have a pressure washer but don’t know how to use it without an outdoor tap, the good news is that you also have options – you don’t have to keep your pressure washer in some dark and dusty corner until you do have access to a proper tap. Enjoy spraying your patio and stripping it of years worth of grime!

Using Indoor Tap

If you happen to have a long length of hose hanging around, or if the hose included with your pressure washer is long enough, one option for you is to use a kitchen or bathroom faucet as your water source. Before you do this, you will want to check the gallons per minute that your faucet provides by seeing how quickly it can fill up a 5-gallon bucket. Most pressure washers need a flow rate of 2-3 gallons per minute, so if your flow rate is lower than that, this option will not work for you.

If you find that your flow rate is high enough, we can go on to connect the hose to your faucet. Because most sinks are not compatible with hoses, you may need to purchase a faucet adapter that will allow you to attach your hose.

The downside to this method is you may be more restricted in where you can take your pressure washer, especially if you have to snake the hose through a window to the outdoors. Then again, any outlet to a certain extent limits where your pressure washer can go, so this might not be the worst option.

Using a Water Barrel

If you happen to live in an area that gets plenty of rain that fills your water barrels consistently, another option for you is to make use of those water barrels and attach your pressure washer to the barrel’s tap and have at it! The force of gravity should give enough pressure for your pressure washer to work efficiently. Water barrels can hold up to 300 gallons of water, and the average pressure washer uses anywhere from 2 to 4 gallons per minute. This means you could run your pressure washer continuously for an hour and fifteen minutes to two-and-a-half hours!

The main downside to this would be that if you leave your water barrel open, some debris like leaves, dirt, or bugs might make its way into the bucket. To avoid this, you can put a screen or mesh covering over the opening and close the barrel when it has reached its capacity.

Using a Washing Machine Tap

If your home has attachments for washing machines and dryers, chances are you can also you the washing machine tap as the water source for your pressure washer. Just hook up your pressure washer to the tap as you would to your typical outdoor tap. Of course, doing so renders your washing machine incapable of working, so a nice long-term solution for this is to purchase a two-way tap connector that will allow you to have your washing machine and your pressure washer to be connected simultaneously.

Using a Bucket

If none of these other options will work for you, using a bucket may work in a pinch. However, it should be noted that while using a bucket is an option for a water source, you cannot generally use the same hose that you would be using otherwise and will likely need to purchase a suction hose specifically for the purpose of using it in a bucket.

Because pressure washers use water so quickly, this may not be the most ideal solution for you, as it’s likely you will need to refill the bucket more frequently than you may wish to do. However, this option does give you more freedom as to where you can take your pressure washer, provided that you are willing to refill the bucket as frequently as it needs to be. This is especially viable if you don’t need to use it for extensive projects that take a lot of area and water.

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