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  1. #1
    Senior Member zmcgovern45's Avatar
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    Got rid of my Overpriced Karcher PW and bought a Cheap Ryobi & Upgraded it... way better setup!!

    The Karcher X Series...
    About 4 years ago I bought a Karcher X Series (K5.540) , 2000 PSI, 1.4 GPM unit (product link) to be used for car washing. This was my first electric pressure washer, and I figured I would buy the "top of the line" expensive model so I wouldn't have any regrets later. Well, I screwed up....





    The Karcher unit was... fine. I mean it sprayed water at higher pressure, so I suppose it functioned, but after fighting with it for so long, that is about the only good thing I can say about it. The hose was a stiff, cheap product that would never lay flat. It always tried to retain the coiled up shape even when it was uncoiled. Thanks to Karcher's unique connections, the only option that I had found to replace the hose was with another Karcher hose... so I was stuck with it. The spray gun and wand were also cheap, flimsy products. The variable pressure wand is a nice idea, however I only utilized the widest fan setting, so the variable settings were not needed by any means. Again, thanks to the Karcher connections, I was also stuck with this gun. Due to these proprietary connections, I also had to purchase an adapter to allow me to use my foam cannons with this sprayer. The attachment on the PW body to hold the gun while it was being stored fell off regularly, as did the hook to hang the extension cord on. This was an issue from day one. Very cheaply made, poorly designed pieces. In the end, it was the power cord that gave up on me, and instead of spending $20 to fix it, I sold the entire unit for $30 on craigslist. I just wanted it gone. Time to start over.




    My inspiration...
    I had watched some videos by Matt on Obsessed Garage where he went over a lot of the research he had done on pressure washer fittings, wands, guns, hoses, etc. and I became intrigued. I knew my next setup needed to incorporate some higher end components (hose and gun, specifically) so I would not have the same complaints as I did with the Karcher unit. I have always been a fan of the MTM Foam Cannons, so I spent some time on their site and the OG site checking out fittings, hoses, and guns. I liked what I saw so I decided to get to work....




    The Cheap Ryobi...
    I went to my local home depot and picked up the cheapest pressure washer they had. A 1600 PSI, 1.2 GPM Ryobi unit (product link). This unit retails for $119, but I had a coupon and got it for $101 + tax. I knew I would not be using the included hose or gun, I just needed the unit itself. This little thing is a great, compact size. It is very lightweight and easy to move around, unlike the overweight karcher unit I had previously.




    Upgrading the Ryobi...
    The output of the Ryobi PW is an M22 male thread where the supplied Ryobi hose would typically connect. Since I would not be using this hose, I needed to convert the M22 thread to a 3/8" coupler as that is a common size found on most higher end hoses. From there I needed the use the appropriate fittings to connect the hose to the pressure washer, and the hose to my new MTM SG-28 Spray Gun. A 1/4" coupler was added to the output of the spray gun to allow for easy changes between spray nozzles and foam cannons. The following photo shows the full layout of parts. Click here to download the PDF with links to all parts and a 2nd option to upgrade your hose and gun.

    Some of the parts once they arrived....





    Just put the new setup to the test today, and I am very pleased!!!


    (Used with MTM Hydro PF22 Foam Cannon and Optimum Car Wash. 40* Nozzle used for rinsing)






    Initial Impressions of the New Setup...
    Man is it nice to have a 50' hose! Man is it nice to have a hose that doesn't get twisted and tangled! Man is it nice to have a PW that doesn't fall over!


    Alright, so I do not have a hose reel on this new unit. This means I have to connect and disconnect the high pressure hose each time I use it which adds a couple of minutes to my job, but I sort of prefer it this way. The PW unit remains very compact and lightweight without the hose reel. I simply roll up my hose and hang it on a hook inside my garage above the pressure washer, just like I do with my garden hose. My foam lance and spray gun have spots on my pegboard.


    The SG-28 spray gun is very nice. While it is still a completely plastic body, the build quality is much better than the Karcher gun. It just feels sturdy. There isn't a bunch of play in the trigger.

    The MTM nozzles with the appropriately selected orifice size are fantastic!! It feels like this 1600 PSI unit has a much stronger stream than the 2000 PSI karcher did. I think the Karcher spray wand was the limiting factor there.

    The connectors and fittings are very solid. No leaks, and no issues connecting or disconnecting anything during setup, use, and tear down.




    At the end of the day, I spent less money on this new setup than I did on the Karcher several years ago. I feel the Ryobi (or other similar inexpensive unit) with the upgraded components is absolutely the right way to go for consumer setups! So far I'm very happy with my switch.

    Retired Professional Detailer

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  3. #2
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    Re: Got rid of my Overpriced Karcher PW and bought a Cheap Ryobi & Upgraded it... way better setup!!

    I'm in the same boat with the Karcher and really getting sick of the hose and the constant falling over. Thanks for sharing your setup - something I'll have to look into once I'm ready to replace it.

  4. #3
    Senior Member Cg6LeMoN's Avatar
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    Re: Got rid of my Overpriced Karcher PW and bought a Cheap Ryobi & Upgraded it... way better setup!!

    Hey Zach! Good to see you posting here again. My first electric pressure washer and current is the greenworks from Lowes. I didn't like the hose and wand it came with as well and had to buy separate parts to make it work for me. I will look into the ryobi brand for my next one.

    Click on image to view work

  5. #4
    Senior Member Nicholas@Autowerx's Avatar
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    Re: Got rid of my Overpriced Karcher PW and bought a Cheap Ryobi & Upgraded it... way better setup!!

    Those little Ryobi units are pretty decent for the price. I get about 4 months out of mine using them daily before they finally seize up. One of them actually caught on fire inside my van after cleaning a fleet of buses in 95f weather LOL. Upgrading the hose is probably the single best thing you can do for these units as it seems to allow more water flow and more pressure to the gun tip.
    Nicholas Scafidi - CQuartz Finest Authorized Installer
    www.autowerxdetailing.com Auto Detailing in Sherwood, OR
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  7. #5
    Senior Member fly07sti's Avatar
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    Re: Got rid of my Overpriced Karcher PW and bought a Cheap Ryobi & Upgraded it... way better setup!!

    Nice Zach! I did a similar setup. Bought a Greenworks from Lowes a couple years back and upgraded the hose to a very flexible 50' and got the pistol grip wand. Quick connects on everything and it's also super quiet which is great.
    On a side note, the clear 36 ounce bottles with the dilution ratio on them are great for the foam cannon. Can set on the ground without tipping over.

  8. #6
    Senior Member Daviddear30's Avatar
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    Re: Got rid of my Overpriced Karcher PW and bought a Cheap Ryobi & Upgraded it... way better setup!!

    I have the same Pressure Washer. It has been great. Amazon has a cheap reel that will fit on top of it without falling over. I added the reel to mine with 50 ft of hose and small gun. Very much like your set up
    Got rid of my Overpriced Karcher PW and bought a Cheap Ryobi & Upgraded it... way better setup!!-18221875_10155222882398686_2233566506109681270_n-jpg

  9. #7
    Senior Member VISITOR's Avatar
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    Re: Got rid of my Overpriced Karcher PW and bought a Cheap Ryobi & Upgraded it... way better setup!!

    if my electric greenworks pressure washer stopped working i wouldn't hesitate to buy another or the ryobi. sometimes more expensive doesn't always mean better...

  10. #8
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    Got rid of my Overpriced Karcher PW and bought a Cheap Ryobi & Upgraded it... way better setup!!

    Your PW isn't pushing nearly enough PSI for the 3/8" hose. I think you're leaving performance on the table. Anyhow, if you're happy!

    On edit: I decided to google my thoughts and came up with this....

    https://www.autogeekonline.net/forum...sher-hose.html

    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    '03 Corvette Z06

  11. #9
    Senior Member Calendyr's Avatar
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    Re: Got rid of my Overpriced Karcher PW and bought a Cheap Ryobi & Upgraded it... way better setup!!

    I use a Simoniz unit. I am mostly happy with it but like you I hate the cheap 10 foot hose that comes with it. It always wants to coil up and it's barelly long enough to go to the other end of the car. If it was 5 or 10 feet longer it would be perfect.

    So, can you tell me how and where to shop for a replacement hose? I was under the impression you were stuck with the company you chose for your power washer, they all seems to have their own connectors and all. In my case, both my power washers have a hose to screws in the unit. I believe both are from the same company despite the fact they have different brands on them. I never checked if the hose were compatible with one an other but I believe they are. So with all that said, what are the steps you went through to find adapters and replacement hoses and guns?

    And where did you purchase yours? I would most likelly try to do it locally but just in case

  12. #10
    Senior Member Daviddear30's Avatar
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    Re: Got rid of my Overpriced Karcher PW and bought a Cheap Ryobi & Upgraded it... way better setup!!

    Quote Originally Posted by Calendyr View Post
    I use a Simoniz unit. I am mostly happy with it but like you I hate the cheap 10 foot hose that comes with it. It always wants to coil up and it's barelly long enough to go to the other end of the car. If it was 5 or 10 feet longer it would be perfect.

    So, can you tell me how and where to shop for a replacement hose? I was under the impression you were stuck with the company you chose for your power washer, they all seems to have their own connectors and all. In my case, both my power washers have a hose to screws in the unit. I believe both are from the same company despite the fact they have different brands on them. I never checked if the hose were compatible with one an other but I believe they are. So with all that said, what are the steps you went through to find adapters and replacement hoses and guns?

    And where did you purchase yours? I would most likelly try to do it locally but just in case

    The Ryobis use a pretty standard connection for hoses My hose fits on my small ryobi and large subaru gas pressure washer. M22. There a lot of choices for M22 hoses. I am not sure what size your simoniz uses.

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