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Old 20-09-2021, 07:45   #1
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Salt water or fresh water pressure washer

wonder what everyone uses for portable pressure washer

thinking of those battery operated pressure washers.

do they make saltwater ones or can I use a freshwater washer with saltwater then run freshwater after saltwater to clean off the salt.

like for cleaning anchor chain.
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Old 20-09-2021, 08:00   #2
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Re: Salt water or fresh water pressure washer

Cruising World published an article by me in their April edition, which was exactly about this subject, and how to make your own portable deck/anchor wash system, which can be used with either saltwater or freshwater. It’s much more versatile than a fixed system, which I also have on my boat by the way. You can empty a dinghy full of rainwater with a portable system.
If you can’t get a copy of the mag’ send me a PM with your e-mail, and I’ll send you a proof. Can’t give it here, they’ll moan at me for promoting my website.
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Old 20-09-2021, 08:15   #3
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Re: Salt water or fresh water pressure washer

Hmmmm. Wizard idea.

First, I know nothing of your water budget. I carry 140 gallons of freshwater and have an AC source (genset or inverter) on board, so I think I'd use AC and fresh water. Remember that small pressure washers use a couple of gallons per minute. That route means a cheaper unit, more pressure, and no salt in the pump.

In the battery/salt water case you will expend some fresh water flushing out, and you will need to filter the water, since presssure washers and small fish don't get on well. You will pay a bunch for the battery, and get lower pressure. You'll need a way of charging the battery, which circles you back to AC. It will be handy, without the tangle of extension cord and pressure hose.

Your call. My electric pressure washer is sitting on the boat right now, and you've inspired me to leave it there.
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Old 20-09-2021, 09:05   #4
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Re: Salt water or fresh water pressure washer

My system runs off the boat's 12-volt batteries and fires a 15' foot powerful jet, to clean the chain as it comes up. The pump can handle seawater or fresh water, and it's the easiest thing to clean the filter and pipes.
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Old 20-09-2021, 17:54   #5
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Re: Salt water or fresh water pressure washer

The link does not work for me. I am on a laptop.

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Old 20-09-2021, 18:11   #6
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Re: Salt water or fresh water pressure washer

I use my watermaker pump for pressure washing. It's already plumbed and I just switch from delivering to the membrane to a pressure line and wand.
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Old 20-09-2021, 19:39   #7
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Re: Salt water or fresh water pressure washer

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Originally Posted by arch007 View Post
wonder what everyone uses for portable pressure washer

...

like for cleaning anchor chain.
Why portable?

On a boat built for or used for cruising?

Our Led Myne has a permanently mounted Flojet Quad diaphragm pump that can deliver 17 litres/minute or 4.5 US gals/min to a hose fitting on the port bow.

Just dandy to wash down the chain and anchor with seawater, wash the deck, cool off people, and so on.

Or, should we have the luxury of town water and/or can spare it, freshwater for any of a dozen purposes.
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Old 21-09-2021, 08:52   #8
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Re: Salt water or fresh water pressure washer

household goulds shallow well pump- 15 gallons plus per minute 1 inch fire hose. when new disassembled and epoxy coated the entire inside surface. yes. it is 120v a/c, but it is easy to pull apart if needed, permits plenty of water flow gpm at 60psi with a firehose nozzle, and cleans everything plus sinks dinghies with strangers with ill intent.
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Old 21-09-2021, 09:38   #9
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Re: Salt water or fresh water pressure washer

If you are doing more anchoring than once or twice on each trip away from the marina and a fresh water source, I would install a built-in salt water pressure wash at the bow. Hose bib outlet on deck and a short hose with nozzle just left there permanently. You can get the salt water connection by teeing into the head inlet.

This way there is nothing to drag up to the bow and back each time, finding a place to store the washer and no depletion of precious fresh water.
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Old 21-09-2021, 09:43   #10
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Re: Salt water or fresh water pressure washer

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household goulds shallow well pump- 15 gallons plus per minute 1 inch fire hose. when new disassembled and epoxy coated the entire inside surface. yes. it is 120v a/c, but it is easy to pull apart if needed, permits plenty of water flow gpm at 60psi with a firehose nozzle, and cleans everything plus sinks dinghies with strangers with ill intent.

I strongly discourage anyone from using 120V equipment in proximity to exposure of human body to salt water.
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Old 21-09-2021, 09:53   #11
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Re: Salt water or fresh water pressure washer

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I strongly discourage anyone from using 120V equipment in proximity to exposure of human body to salt water.
and what is your reasoning on this? hard plumbed and correctly wired is no difference than using any other 120v system on a vessel. Most vessels over 50' use various higher voltages in response to weight savings and higher HP power needs.

The disadvantage of the various household devices is the lack of decent corrosion prevention which 1) needs awareness and attention to coatings 2) longevity is not to be expected.
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Old 21-09-2021, 11:25   #12
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Re: Salt water or fresh water pressure washer

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and what is your reasoning on this? hard plumbed and correctly wired is no difference than using any other 120v system on a vessel. Most vessels over 50' use various higher voltages in response to weight savings and higher HP power needs.

The disadvantage of the various household devices is the lack of decent corrosion prevention which 1) needs awareness and attention to coatings 2) longevity is not to be expected.
The post I replied to, I thought referred to use of a portable 120V pump delivering salt water openly on deck, not in a closed system. Equipment permanently installed in a closed loop and grounded in a way that cannot make this sort of direct path is normally OK. For example, 120V pump delivering salt water to a heat exchanger for air conditioning or fridge. Heat exchanger is grounded, so even if there is leakage of current from hot AC side in the pump to the salt water, the metal of heat exchanger is still at 0V wrt other nearby metal objects. In case of a person standing on deck barefoot in salt water and holding the hose nozzle, he could be part of a leakage path from pump to hose water to any grounded object, like an anchor windlass, chain or rigging.

My advice is perhaps driven by an over-abundance of caution, and I defer to any experts on this subject. It may be sufficient to rely on the ground in the power cord of the portable pump.
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Old 23-09-2021, 04:30   #13
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Re: Salt water or fresh water pressure washer

Ask Dr. Google and you'll find plenty solutions from nearly 4 k€ down to 100 €. From fixed install to portable (devided into 230VAC or battery driven) with integrated tank, external suction line or housewater connection. Most of them are fresh- and saltwater compatible.

So, where's the problem?

Just take one that fits your needs and wallet best...

Cheers
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Old 23-09-2021, 04:58   #14
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Re: Salt water or fresh water pressure washer

For many years, I’ve just used an AC powered submersible pump to wash the anchor. Toss it over the side with a garden hose attached and you have unlimited running salt water for wash down. Water will flow until your power source stops.

I know. It’s not a pressure washer. It’s not for that type of blasting. But it’s nice to have aboard. Came in handy the other year when I returned to my boat after a rodent got on board and chewed through the solar panel wire, knocking out my bilge pumps (and destroying my batteries) while simultaneously, a hurricane came through and popped out a window leaving one hull to fill up with daily tropical rain over 6 months.

Took all of 5-10 minutes to empty a very full hull of water. Really good emergency bilge pump.

Thankfully, I hadn’t built out that side yet. It was just bare fiberglass, so no damage other than the window needing to be put back on, batteries and wires replaced and hull pumped out and wiped down to dry.
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