Pressure washers pump water from a water source, usually a standard garden hose, and force it through a small hose attached to a trigger-operated wand. This alone does not create the desired pressure for a pressure washer though. The real power in a pressure washer lies in its spray tips. There are a variety of spray tips that vary in coverage area and pressure, as well as how you can connect them to the pressure washer wand. Without a spray tips, your pressure washer would only have one setting. But with five universal spray tips, you can tailor your spray pattern to the job. Each tip produces a different spray pattern and is used for different cleaning purposes. Quick-connect spray tips are precisely what they sound like, they connect quickly. They do not have threads, but instead they are forced into the end of the wand and click into place. Quick-connect spray tips are handy when you have multiple jobs so you do not waste time unscrewing different heads. Quick-connect spray tips are color-coded to tell you what degree of fan they create. Also, with a quick-connect head, you do not have to worry about water leaking around the threads of the tip. Below we break down and explain the differences between each tip.
Quick Connect Spray Tips
Red pressure washer tip is a zero degree tip which means it’s a straight line. The red spray tip creates a 0 degree spray pattern and is the most powerful nozzle of them all. This pressure washer tip is best used for removing hard, stuck-on grime or dirt, such as that which gets caked on the underside of a lawnmower or engine. This tip's high pressure can damage soft surfaces, such as glass or wood, but it can take stains off of harder surfaces, such as masonry or concrete. So you need to be very careful using this tip to make sure you don't cause any damage to the surface you are cleaning.
Yellow pressure washer tip produces a 15 degree wide spray pattern that is commonly referred to as the “chisel” tip. When you hold this spray at a 45 degree angle to the ground, it can be used like a chisel or scraper to remove dirt or debris from surfaces, such as partially peeled paint. This is one of the most commonly used tips, because it provides a wider coverage area than the red tip, but it is the second strongest pressure-wise. It's great to use for heavy duty power washing, such as cleaning a garage floor or removing stains from concrete.
The green spray wand tip generates a 25 degree spray pattern. This tip is the washing tip, because it provides adequate pressure to remove dirt from surfaces, but is also not likely to damage many surfaces. This tip is the most versatile due to its wide area of cleaning and strong pressure application. This tip works well for general cleaning purposes such as outdoor furniture, brick patios, walkways and decks. This pressure washer tip is also excellent for “sweeping” foliage or garbage given its wide angle.
The white tip creates a 40 degree spray pattern and is called the “fan” tip. It creates the widest area of cleaning but with a relatively low pressure. It's best used when cleaning delicate surfaces that can easily be damaged, such as the siding of a home or soft stucco walls. The white tip is also an excellent choice for doing light cleaning on wood decks and other soft or delicate surfaces.
The black tip generates a 65 degree spray pattern. This produces the widest, most gentle stream of all the tips. It is the widest of the applicator tips, because it is used for the application of chemicals that are added to the water stream after the pump, so that harmful chemicals do not enter the pump, thereby damaging or contaminating it. The black tip provides a low pressure application with a broad coverage area ideal for applying pesticides or herbicides. Remember to thoroughly rinse any tubes and wands that chemicals travel through so that there is not residue applied when you wash something else later.