What Kind of Oil Does a Pressure Washer Use- Full Guide



We all know pressure washers are powerful tools to remove dirt, grime, and stains from almost any surface in no time.

just like any other power machine, when it comes to maintenance, changing its oil from time to time is very impotent to function properly, which is one of the most crucial aspects of maintaining.

But, What Kind of Oil Does a Pressure Washer Use?

many types of oils available on the market today, it’s easy to get confused about which one to choose for your pressure washer engine or pump and which we don’t have to choose.

In this comprehensive guide, Im explained everything you need to know about it. So let’s dive right in!

What Kind of Oil Does a Pressure Washer Use?

When it comes to choosing the right oil for your pressure washer, there are a few things you need to consider.

Engine oil is used in the engine of your pressure washer to lubricate its moving parts and reduce friction.

for high-pressure pumps as they don’t contain additives that could damage the internal seals of your machine.

Changing both engine and pump oil regularly will ensure optimal performance from your machine while increasing its lifespan. Many experts recommend changing these oils every 50 hours or annually – whichever comes first.

Engine Oils (All-Purpose)

Click on the picture for more info

All-Purpose Engine Oils are the most commonly used oils in pressure washers. These oils have a balanced blend of additives that provide excellent engine performance under various operating conditions.

These types of oils are formulated to provide high viscosity and anti-wear properties, which help protect the engine from wear caused by friction. They also contain detergents that help prevent deposits and sludge buildup in the engine.

In my point of view, All-Purpose Engine Oils can work well in both hot and cold temperatures, making them an ideal choice for year-round use. However, they may not be suitable for extreme weather conditions because of their moderate viscosity index.

Pump Oils(Non-Detergent)

Click on the picture for more info

Non-Detergent Pump Oils are specially formulated for use in pressure washer pumps. Unlike all-purpose engine oils, non-detergent pump oils do not contain any additives that can harm the seals and valves of the pressure washer pump.

These oils have a unique formulation that helps reduce wear and tear on the pump’s internal components, which is crucial for extending its lifespan. Non-detergent pump oil also has excellent lubrication properties that protect against rust and corrosion.

It’s important to note that non-detergent pump oil is not suitable for use in pressure washer engines. This type of oil is specifically designed only for high-pressure water pumps found in pressure washers.

What difference Between Those Two Oil?

Choosing the right oil for your pressure washer can be a challenging task. With so many options available in the market, it’s essential to pick the best one that suits your machine. All-purpose engine oils and non-detergent pump oils are two types of oil that you can use for your pressure washer.

  All-Purpose Engine Oil Non-Detergent Pump Oil
Composition Contains detergents, additives like detergents or dispersants Does not contain detergents or additives like detergents or dispersants
Function Removes dirt and debris from inside the engine Ideal for lubricating high-pressure pumps
Suitability Excellent for cleaning tough stains or dirty surfaces Sufficient for occasional use or lighter jobs such as washing cars or outdoor furniture

Do you really need to change your oil?

The type of oil you use in your pressure washer is crucial for its performance, bill and longevity. It’s essential to change the pump oil regularly to ensure that it maintains its lubricating properties.

Choosing the right kind of oil depends on various factors such as temperature range, viscosity rating, and manufacturer recommendations. Always refer to your owner’s manual for specific instructions on what type of oil to use.

Remember that neglecting regular maintenance can lead to costly repairs or replacements in the future. By following these steps and changing your pressure washer’s oil frequently, you can keep it running smoothly for years to come like any other pressure washer accessories ex. hose

How to Change the Oil?

Easy Steps:

  1. Locate the oil drain plug and position a container underneath it.
  2. Carefully remove the oil drain plug, ensuring not to misplace or damage the O-ring gasket.
  3. Allow all the old oil to drain out completely.
  4. Replace the drain plug securely.
  5. Refill the oil with fresh oil according to your manufacturer’s recommendations. Note that the oil requirements may vary depending on whether you have an engine or pump that requires oil.
  6. After refilling, check for any leaks around the drain plug.
  7. Wipe away any excess oil around the engine area.
  8. Dispose of the used motor oils in an environmentally friendly way. You can take them to recycling centers or follow local laws and regulations for proper disposal methods.
  9. By regularly changing the oil of your pressure washer, you’ll increase its lifespan and prevent costly repairs in the future.

Buying Guide! Pump Oil

The type of oil you choose will depend on the type of pump your pressure washer has, so it’s essential to check the owner’s manual or manufacturer’s website for specific recommendations.

  1. Choose between mineral-based and synthetic oils: Mineral-based oils are more affordable but break down faster. Synthetic oils last longer and provide better protection against wear and tear. Consider your budget and the level of performance you require for your pressure washer.
  2. Viscosity level: Pay attention to the viscosity level of the pump oil. Viscosity determines the thickness or thinness of the oil at a specific temperature. Using an oil with excessively high viscosity can lead to pump clogging and damage. Refer to your pressure washer’s manual for the recommended viscosity range.
  3. Detergent vs. non-detergent pump oil: Determine whether you need a detergent or non-detergent pump oil. Detergent oils are formulated for cleaning purposes, helping to remove dirt and debris from the pump. Non-detergent oils, on the other hand, focus solely on lubrication. Consider the specific requirements of your pressure washer and choose accordingly.

Buying Guide! Engine Oil

There are many types of oil that you can use for your pressure washer engine, but choosing the right one can be overwhelming. To determine the right oil type for your pressure washer engine, you should first check the owner’s manual or manufacturer’s website to see what kind of oil is recommended.

  1. Check your engine’s requirements: Different engines have specific oil requirements. Consult your pressure washer’s manual or contact the manufacturer to determine whether your engine requires synthetic or mineral-based oils, as well as any special additives.
  2. Consider viscosity rating: Viscosity rating indicates how easily the oil flows at specific temperatures. Higher viscosity ratings indicate thicker oil that offers better protection at high temperatures. Refer to your manual for the recommended viscosity range.
  3. Cold weather considerations: If you’ll be using your pressure washer in cold weather, choose oils with lower-temperature ratings. Thinner multigrade oils are suitable for colder conditions as they maintain better flow rates.
  4. Opt for quality brands: Purchase oil from reputable manufacturers like Briggs & Stratton or Honda. Quality brands ensure you’re getting a reliable product with good performance characteristics.

5 Facts About Changing Pressure Washer Pump Oil

1. Frequency of Changing Oil
Changing pressure washer pump oil is critical in maintaining the machine’s optimal performance. The frequency of changing oil can vary depending on how often you use your pressure washer. However, it is recommended to change the oil after every 50 hours of operation.

2. Choosing the Right Type of Oil
Choosing the right type of oil for your pressure washer pump is crucial in ensuring that it operates smoothly and efficiently. It is important to consult your user manual or manufacturer’s recommendations when choosing an appropriate type and grade of oil.

3. Checking Oil Levels Regularly
Checking your oil levels regularly allows you to determine whether there are any leaks or contamination that may affect its performance. You should always make sure that your pressure washer has sufficient amounts of clean and clear oil before starting a job.

4. Importance Of Proper Disposal
Proper disposal methods must be followed when getting rid of old or used pump oils from pressure washers as they contain contaminants such as debris, dirt and other harmful chemicals which pose a threat to both human health and environmental safety.

5. Professional Maintenance Services
If you’re unsure about how to perform maintenance tasks like changing the pump’s oil, seek help from professional services for proper guidance on how best to go about doing so without causing damage or injury during handling or disposal procedures


As we come to the end of this guide on what kind of oil a pressure washer uses, it’s important to remember that choosing and maintaining the right oil is crucial for optimal performance.

By understanding the different types of oils available, such as all-purpose engine oils and non-detergent pump oils, you can make an informed decision on which one is best suited for your pressure washer. It’s also essential to note that changing the oil at regular intervals will help keep your equipment running smoothly.


  • Lucas

    Hi I am, a passionate and self-sufficient ‘USA’ resident who never depends on others to clean cars, other vehicles, decks, patios, driveways, sidewalks, and the exterior of my house. When I’m not busy always love to research new techniques to improve my cleaning skills and spend time maintaining pressure washers to keep them in top condition.

    View all posts