Kärcher Home & Garden Online Help

Kärcher North America Online Help

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Why is my electric pressure washer cycling?
Updated 10/19/09

Electric Washers Only

When you connect your power washer to water and turn it on, the motor will run for a few seconds, building up pressure. Once it attains a specific PSI inside the pump, a pressure switch engages and turns the motor off. When you release this built up pressure by pulling the trigger on the trigger gun, the pressure inside the pump drops, turning the motor on again. When you let go of the trigger, the pressure builds up inside the pump again and turns off the motor.

Cycling is when the motor turns on and off when the trigger on the gun is not being pulled. It only occurs with electric units because our gas machines do not have a pressure switch.

The pressure switch inside the pump controls when the motor turns on and off. Any release in pressure causes the pressure switch to activate the motor. Leaks are the biggest contributor to a cycling machine.

You should check the following:

1. Verify if connections are tightened properly. Water leaking from a loose connection can cause the unit to cycle on and off.
2. Verify if the high pressure hose has an O-ring at the connection. If missing, this will also cause the unit to cycle on and off.
3. While the unit is running look for any water leaks that may cause the unit to turn back on.

If you have low pressure, you should look at the FAQ titled "Why doesn't my pressure washer reach full pressure?"

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