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Wickes 160 bar pressure washer: an update

Von: Fred (fred@no-email.here.invalid) [Profil]
Datum: 08.06.2010 12:48
Message-ID: <1a6s06hk3bdn43cjmt1t60q6g18c3ibi27@4ax.com>
Newsgroup: uk.d-i-y
Hi,

I started a thread asking about this pressure washer back in April but
my local store never had any of the 160 bar models in stock until now.

I see that broadback posted a thread a week ago asking how to assemble
various parts of it. I quite agree with him that the instructions are
totally useless.

The strange thing is that there is "information" printed in a dozen
different languages but there is a "front page" saying "Wickes
pressure washer". Is Wickes an international brand? I didn't realise
it had stores across Europe. I just wondered why if they went to the
trouble of printing a Wickes-specific cover, they didn't customise the
rest of the leaflet and only print the English part?

The English section does not appear to be specific to this washer and
is basically safety advice, such as don't point at people, etc.

The only instructions about assembly are some hand drawn diagrams on
the last page, which again is printed with the Wickes logo. These are
incomplete and as broadback already posted, don't show you how to fit
half the parts to the machine! If you have never had a pressure washer
before, like me, then you do spend a few minutes wondering what the
bits are all for.

I think a couple of reviews on the Wickes web site complained it is a
little "unfinished" cosmetically. It is just thrown into the box
without any polystyrene packing. As a result there were a few
scratches. I know these are only cosmetic and tools get scratched in
use but when you spend over £100 on something, I think it is
reasonable to expect it to arrive in mint condition? True, it doesn't
affect the function of the machine but first impressions count when
taking your new toy out of the box.

Another review talks about the soap dispenser being fragile. Mine was
broken out of the box, hence my grumble about lack of protective
polystyrene. There is nothing in the instructions to explain that the
wire "loop" is for cleaning the nozzle, or when it needs cleaning, and
nothing to explain about the two soap dispensers.

From what I can gather there are two soap dispensers. There is a small
black tank at the base of the machine for low pressure use and the
fragile white tank that attaches directly to the lance is for high
pressure use. Have I got that right?

There is a pressure gauge on the lance which simply reads "0, 70
(bar), Max". Though I already knew that the 160 was a theoretical
figure used for marketing, the gauge implies that 70 bar is halfway
and the working maximum pressure is 140 bar.

I have borrowed a cheap £50ish Karcher with noisy, plastic, motor but
despite all the design shortcuts on that, it had an adjustable lance.
With the Wickes model it seems you get 140bar or nothing, so I am
confused about how I can use either a low pressure soap dispenser or a
high pressure one. Do I have to buy an adjustable lance separately,
and what are their definitions of low and high pressure soap sprays?

I haven't used it to wash the car because some reports say that high
pressure sprays will remove the paint. What is the best pressure for
car washing? There doesn't appear to be a warning in the instructions
and the box even shows it being used on a car.

The instructions talk about some washers having an automatic stop and
some not. Those without should not be left in "standby" for more than
two minutes. Fair enough but it says those with an automatic stop,
like this one, should not be left in standby for more than five
minutes. Why is this if the motor is not on, what damage can be done?
It also talks about a safety catch on the lance but I don't appear to
have one.

I haven't used the washer in anger so I can't honestly comment on its
performance but the instructions are truly awful and my first
impressions are that it isn't as wonderful as I had hoped for. It is
made by Lavor.

HTH
Fred

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