VIDEO: How to Pressure Wash a BBQ Grill

Posted In: "How To", RV Lifestyle

In many respects, tools are what separate human beings from the lower animals. (Tools, and micro fleece. Believe me, if they had access to it, other animals would also be wearing micro fleece.) Sure, opposable digits are nice, but many animals have thumbs. Few gorillas, on the other hand, have pressure washers.

The love between men and power tools is well documented. Of course, certain power tools – like the pressure washer – simply bring out the “lower animal” in many men.

When using a pressure washer you get to crank an engine, hold a gun, pull a trigger, and shoot dangerous projectiles. What’s not to like?

Pressure washing walks that fine line between constructive and destructive behavior.

The results of pressure washing can be alluring. As we’ve previously demonstrated, pressure washing can have an astonishing effect on the aluminum skin of an Airstream. There’s no more dramatic way to scrape off whatever gunk and funk has accumulated over time.

Although pressure washing is, dare I say it, a fun activity, it’s also quite dangerous. Obviously, a 2400 PSI stream of concentrated water is powerful enough to slice skin and sinew. Pressure wash injuries are unique, made worse by the possibility of wound contamination. If you are pressure washing with a cleansing substance, you could inject “Mr. Clean” into your bloodstream.

In the case of my own pressure washing injury, on the fateful day in question I was wearing (what else) Crocs. To make matters worse, at the time of the accident I was lying on the roof of our Airstream, and so I had removed my Crocs. When wriggling around on the roof, I pulled the trigger, and the wand whisked past my exposed bare foot. I now have a nice scar to go along with a not-so-thrilling story.

Scene from my upcoming film, "Scarfoot."

So here are a few tips to keep in mind when pressure washing.

1. Dress appropriately. Wear shoes, since your feet are probably most vulnerable to a stray swipe of the pressure washing wand. Gloves are probably a wise idea. Helmets are optional.

2. Choose the right wand tip. You can adjust the power of the wash by changing the tips of your washer (this is true with most washers). I find that the so-called “dirtblaster” is effective, since it gives you a variety of cleaning angles. It also claims to have some sort of “turbo” function (but I think that’s just because men like saying the word “turbo”).

3. Respect the wand. Pressurized water is not only capable of damaging your own fragile flesh, it can also damage whatever you’re attempting to wash. A strong pressure washer will easily gouge wood if you hold it in the same spot for too long. It’s best to move the washer in slow even sweeps. Keep it away from the panel seams of an Airstream or other camper. Keep it away from electronics. (HINT: WATER AND ELECTRICAL SYSTEMS DO NOT MIX.)

When you get a pressure washer, you probably have certain tasks in mind. But once you’ve nuked the front sidewalk and your brick walls, what’s next? Hey, how about a barbecue grill?

I first heard about pressure washing grills in some long forgotten corner of the Internet. Hey, any excuse to fire up the pressure washer is fine with me.


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