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Buyers Guide & Information

Karcher Pressure Washer Reviews: Pressure Washer Brand Comparisons

We have thoroughly reviewed the Karcher pressure washer range. Find out if this pressure washer brand is best for your requirements.

by JohnL

Buyers Guide & Information

Karcher Pressure Washer Reviews: Pressure Washer Brand Comparisons

We have thoroughly reviewed the Karcher pressure washer range. Find out if this pressure washer brand is best for your requirements.

by JohnL

by JohnL

Pressure washers use a high intensity, highly pressured spray of water to make cleaning much more efficient. Generally, they are used for your tougher jobs where scrubbing with a sponge just won't do it. You'll find them used on sidewalks, buildings, decking, or the front yard, and they are perfect for getting rid of nuisances like tough dirt or gum.

Pressure washers were once only used by professionals, but increasingly they're becoming popular for home use. This has led to a massive rise in the amount of choice on the market, and there are now more brands than before. Karcher is probably the number one brand in pressure washers at the moment, with a wide range of products for home or commercial use. This review will explore just why Karcher is so popular and introduce some of their best products.

Image

Product

Pressure

GPM

Weight

Check Price

Karcher 13246440 K 5 Premium Full Control Plus...

Karcher 13246440 K5 Premium

2000 psi

2.2 gallons

39lbs

Karcher K5 Premium Electric Power Pressure Washer,...

Karcher K5

2000 psi

1.4 gallons

32lbs

Karcher 11073830 G2700R Gas Pressure Washer, 15' x...

Karcher 11073830 G2700R

2700 psi

2.4 gallons

60lbs

Karcher K3 Follow-Me

Karcher K3 Follow-Me

1800 psi

1.3 gallons

16lbs

Karcher K2 Plus Electric Power Pressure Washer,...

Karcher K2 Plus

1600 psi

1.25 gallons

16.8lbs

Karcher K1700 Electric Power Pressure Washer 1700...

Karcher K1700

1700 psi

1.2 gallons

20.7lbs

Karcher K2000 Electric Power Pressure Washer 2000...

Karcher K2000

2000 psi

1.3 gallons

25lbs

Karcher K2 Car & Home Kit Electric Power Pressure...

Karcher K2 Car & Home Kit

1600 psi

1.25 gallons

25lbs

Why Choose the Karcher Brand?

Karcher was founded in 1935, and over the last 80 years, they've focused on driving home innovation. The Karcher story began in Germany, where, ironically, Alfred Karcher first founded the brand and spent a decade making industrial furnaces, which created a lot of power, but a lot of dirt. By the 1960s, they were operating internationally, producing high powered cleaning equipment that was used the world over. In the 1980s, they rose to global fame after they cleaned the Christ the Redeemer Statue in Rio De Janeiro. 

All Karcher products are made in Germany and have the high construction values you would associate with German engineering. Alongside the quality, Karcher incorporates several unique features that have made them stand out in the crowd:

Unique Spray Wand Options

Karcher prides themselves on innovation and has included their unique spray wand. This allows you to switch between up to 4 different spray types by twisting the nozzle, combining efficiency with simplicity.

Various Design Styles

There is a range of different models suitable for a variety of tasks, but what's great about Karcher is that all the accessories are interchangeable. So whether you have 1 Karcher pressure washer or 3, you can still use all the same kit,

N-Cor Technologies

Karcher uses N-Cor technology to focus water and create a consistent pressurized stream. It's noncorrosive and long-lasting, giving a greater lifespan to your pressure washer.

Water Cooled Motors

Karcher uses water cooling technology to keep the engines of their pressure washers at a low enough temperature to continue operating. This means they can run for longer, and helps with the overall longevity of the machine. As you can see, Karcher is offering a lot compared to other brands. It's these features, and their quality, which makes them stand out from the crowd and explains why they are so popular in the pressure washer world.


8 Karcher Pressure Washers Reviewed

1. Karcher 13246440 K5 Premium

Our top Pick

Pressure

2000 psi

GPM

2.2 gallons

Cleaning Power

4400

Weight

39lbs

Warranty

Yes, 2 years

The best Karcher washer on the market at the moment, from our point of view, is the K5 premium. It has a good balance between functionality and practicality, offering a great deal of value at this price point. The Karcher K5 Premium pressure washer has a water-cooled engine which allows you to use it for longer jobs, and can even extend the lifespan of the product by 4 or 5 times.

It has a long reach, with a 25 ft hose, but the integrated hose reel makes it simple to store. The real beauty of this pressure washer is the simplicity of the design. It has a lance with 3 settings, and you can switch between them just by twisting the handle. The handle features unique Karcher technology, which gives you greater control over the flow and pressure of the water.

The Karcher K5 premium is well suited for amateurs or those new to pressure washing simply because of the control it offers. It's no surprise the customer feedback is overwhelmingly positive. Whatever you need a pressure washer for you should definitely consider this one.

Pros

  • Simple to use
  • Powerful
  • Very low and very high pressure for different jobs
  • Long hose and power cord

Cons

  • Not the easiest to set up
  • Separate batteries for pressure gun

2. Karcher K5

Best Karcher electric pressure washer

Pressure

2000 psi

GPM

1.4 gallons

Cleaning Power

2800

Weight

32lbs

Warranty

Yes, 2 years

The Karcher electric pressure washer is designed for quick and effective cleaning. It has a lot of power, especially for an electric pressure washer, but still remains easy to use and flexible to move. The dirt blaster spray wand is specially designed to save you time by cutting through tough stains. This makes it really well suited for professionals where time is money.

This washer features the N-COR pump technology, which is unique to Karcher. This provides a consistent flow of water and is durable, non-corrosive and will stand up to serious wear and tear. The Karcher K5 electric pressure washer also features a Vario Power Spray Wand. This allows you to switch between all the different settings and control the pressure from the handle.

Karcher has also included some of their standard, but useful features like an onboard detergent tank and a water-cooled motor, which increases the lifespan of the machine. It's also light enough to move and won’t take up too much storage space. This electric pressure washer is made for power and has really positive feedback from industry specialists. It's made for the long term, tough jobs, so if you do a lot of pressure washing, then this is one to consider. 

Pros

  • Vario Power Spray Wand
  • Efficient Cleaning
  • Easy Storage
  • Onboard detergent tank

Cons

  • Challenging Assembly
  • Flimsy Plastic Exterior

3. Karcher 11073830 G2700R

Best Karcher gas pressure washer

Pressure

2700 psi

GPM

2.4 gallons

Cleaning Power

6480

Weight

60lbs

Warranty

Yes, 2 years

Gas pressure washers offer one key advantage over other types; they give greater pressure. The Karcher gas pressure washer is another model which is made for large jobs and well suited for commercial use, but can also be an asset for homeowners.

The Karcher G2700R arrives pretty much set up and ready to go, making life easier. It’s heavier than other models but comes on a unit with 12-inch wheels for easy maneuvering. This comes on top of a welded stainless steel frame that is built to last.  

The Karcher G2700R has a large engine with a lot of power and engine oil is included with the unit. Karcher has incorporated its anti-choke technology to make sure it starts without issue every time. Four different spray nozzles come as standard giving you versatility when it comes to cleaning.

Customer feedback is very positive online, and users particularly value the simplicity of the washer and that no assembly is required. Those who own the pressure washer are especially impressed with its effectiveness on cars, fences, and decking. It has a decent range and offers a good balance between cost and quality, providing some good value.

Pros

  • Large, powerful engine
  • Anti-choke engine
  • Easy to maneuver
  • Simple set up

Cons

  • Extra costs for gas
  • Large unit, more storage space needed

4. Karcher K3 Follow-Me

Best small Karcher pressure washer

Pressure

1800 psi

GPM

1.3 gallons

Cleaning Power

2340

Weight

16lbs

Warranty

Yes, 2 years

Home pressure washers are very different from commercial pressure washers, and you need to shop smart to make sure you're getting one, which is right for you. The Karcher K3 Follow-Me pressure washer is smaller than some other units, with less power, but is still easy enough for all domestic jobs.

The Karcher Follow-Me is the most affordable washer on our list but still has several impressive features. It has a Vario Power Spray Wand, which can stream through dirt easily. It features an onboard detergent tank and N-COR pump technology for a consistent flow.

The whole unit comes with a unique four wheelbase. The set up allows it to travel over uneven terrain, and it will follow you from job to job as you move about your home. At just 16 pounds, it's much lighter than alternatives and easy to move and store as needed.

While the Karcher K3 pressure washer may have less power than alternatives, it's the perfect choice for the casual homeowner who uses a pressure washer occasionally. It's well suited for fences, driveways, and cars with enough control so it won't damage anything. If you’re looking for a tool to make your cleaning easier at home, then this is definitely one to consider.

Pros

  • Follows you between jobs
  • Control and power
  • Vario spray wand

Cons

  • Less powerful than alternatives
  • Not well suited for professional jobs

5. Karcher K2 Plus

Top pressure washer for cars

Pressure

1600 psi

GPM

1.25 gallons

Cleaning Power

2000

Weight

16.8lbs

Warranty

Yes, 2 years

The Karcher K2 Plus is lightweight, maneuverable, and suitable for a range of different jobs. It's compact and portable, making it well suited for moving between tasks and specifically for moving around as you clean a car.

The Karcher K2 has features that make it specifically well suited for washing cars. It puts the user in complete control, with a focused spray that is strong enough to clean but won't damage your vehicle. Despite the lower PSI, it still features a dirt blaster spray wand that cleans away any dirt and mud with ease.

The Vario spray also allows you to switch between low and high pressure from the handle easily. This means you can up your pressure when cleaning your patios, driveway, or fences, but keep it low when washing the car. There's also a 20-foot hose attached to the washer, which gives you a long reach, ample for almost any job. When using a pressure washer on your car, you need to find the right balance between power and delicacy. The Karcher K2 plus does this perfectly and is one for all car owners to consider.

Pros

  • Lightweight and portable
  • Full control
  • Perfect for domestic use

Cons

  • Less power for large jobs
  • Challenging to assemble

6. Karcher K1700

Best light duty home model

Pressure

1700 psi

GPM

1.2 gallons

Cleaning Power

2040

Weight

20.7lbs

Warranty

Yes, 3 years

The Karcher 1700 psi pressure washer is a lightweight alternative to heavy-duty pressure washers. It offers a decent amount of power and works well on all small/medium jobs. The K1700 is built for domestic use over commercial, and I wouldn't advise using it for really big jobs. That being said, it will easily clean your fences, driveway, or car without any issue.

It's a mounted unit with wheels on the base, making it convenient to move behind you as you clean. There's a sizeable removable bin that can be used to store all your accessories and kit, making it more straightforward. It also features a 20-foot hose to give you the greatest reach. The K1700 also features a foot pedal on/off switch, which makes it easier to control as you use it.

The K1700 is best suited for those who appreciate convenience; however, it also has the same quality and longevity you would expect from Karcher. The 15-inch nozzle has multiple settings for different types of cleaning, and there is detergent built-in for tougher cleaning. It comes ready to go and only takes 5 minutes to set up, so if you want an easy to use pressure washer that just works- this is a good choice for you.

Pros

  • Lightweight
  • Easy assembly
  • Enough power for all domestic jobs
  • Quick cleaning

Cons

  • Not suitable for large scale jobs
  • Low-quality accessories

7. Karcher K2000

Most powerful electric Karcher model

Pressure

2000 psi

GPM

1.3 gallons

Cleaning Power

2600

Weight

25lbs

Warranty

Yes, 3 years

If you want to take on serious jobs with your pressure washer, then you need to have enough power to get it down properly. Karcher specializes in a range of products but is almost unmatched when it comes to balancing power with functionality.

The Karcher K2000 offers a lot of pressure compared to other models in this price range. It includes 4 different nozzles, including a turbo nozzle for the most intense cleaning. It can handle water up to 70 degrees, so don’t be afraid to load it up with hot water to get the job done more quickly.

On top of the power, Karcher have made the K2000 convenient. There's a foot switch for turning the unit on and off, a large holder for all your accessories, and it's compatible with all Karcher fittings. It's not the lightest model, but it has wheels built in so you can roll it between jobs. It also has a folding handle for easy lifting and storage. The Karcher K2000 is perfect for large scale domestic jobs and is also used by professionals. It’s a good balance of functionality and power, which makes it attractive to all pressure washers.

Pros

  • Powerful
  • Convenient
  • Compatible with all accessories

Cons

  • Loud
  • Less durable than alternatives

8. Karcher K2 Car & Home Kit

Best Karcher pressure washer kit

Pressure

1600 psi

GPM

1.25 gallons

Cleaning Power

2000

Weight

25lbs

Warranty

Yes, 3 years

A pressure washer is a useful tool, but sometimes it’s worth getting the whole set for specific jobs. The Karcher K2 with Home Kit features the washer and 5 different accessories for specifically cleaning your car and home. This includes two different spray wands, a spray gun, a brush, and a surface cleaner.

The strength of this product is the variety it offers. The surface cleaner allows you to spray an 11-inch area at once. This can speed up cleaning by up to 50% and make life a lot easier if you have large areas to cover. The dirt blaster spray wand is well suited for intense cleaning of stubborn stains or other really dirty areas. The power wand allows you to switch quickly between settings as you move between jobs.

The washer itself is powerful enough to handle hard work, and thanks to Karcher technology, it won't overheat quickly. It's also delicate and flexible enough to be used on your car without damaging it. This kit is specifically for those who are using a pressure washer for home cleaning and car cleaning. If that's what your goal is, then this is the one for you.

Pros

  • Variety of high-quality accessories
  • Perfect for home and car
  • Easy to assemble
  • Fast cleaning

Cons

  • Not as durable as other washers
  • Cheaper plastic parts

Comparison to Other Brands

While Karcher is one of the most recognized brands, there are several others you've probably heard of, and it's always a good idea to compare. Simpson is widely regarded as the cheapest on the market, while Generac is considered the most powerful. Other brands like Ryobi offer lighter and more portable models that are well suited for home use. However, as an overall package, they don't measure up to Karcher.

Karcher's strength is in its quality and technology. This makes them longer-lasting, more portable, and more efficient than alternative brands. They combine a lot of the merits of other brands in a way that makes them the most attractive package. You might be able to save a bit of money with another brand in the short term, but in the long run, a Karcher will likely be more cost-effective and provide a better clean.


Karcher Pressure Washer Assembly & Operation

Karcher pressure washers are pretty easy to set up and even more comfortable to operate. Here are the steps you need to follow:

  1. 1
    Attach the water to the water source. All Karcher washers come with an attachment that lets you fit a hose directly into it. You can then connect that to the nearest source and turn it on. If using a central fit water hose, it should be at least 15 meters long to give you an even flow of water.
  2. 2
    Connect to a power supply. This really is as simple as plugging in, but you should make sure you do this safely and connect it to a mains supply that won't be exposed to water. Karcher pressure washers have long cables so you can generally extend them inside.
  3. 3
    Test it. When you first switch the washer on it will run for a few seconds and then switch off. This is normal, as it is just the pressure being adjusted. Make sure you thoroughly test the pressure washer before using it anywhere noticeable.

The video below gives you tips on setting up your Karcher pressure washer

The trick to using a pressure washer effectively is to make sure you have an even flow of pressure. You should always make sure you have as even flow of water as possible and let the machine pressurize before you use it. You should spray about 18 inches away from any surface and move over it slowly, so it cleans easily. You should also always remember to wear eye protection when using a pressure washer to avoid any accidents.


Maintenance & Troubleshooting

To get the most from any piece of equipment, you need to maintain it correctly. This is even more important for pressure washers, as it can seriously harm the effectiveness of the kit. If you look after the washer, you'll get a much longer life from it.

Cleaning your pressure washer

When cleaning your pressure washer, you should focus on the nozzle and the filter. The nozzle is where most blockages will occur, so you need to keep it clear. After fully disconnecting the pressure washer, you can use a fine needle to remove any dirt that may have built up there. Cleaning your filter will help keep the water running clear. You’ll first need to remove the filter, and then you can use an old toothbrush to scrub the filter clean before replacing it in the device.

A full guide to cleaning your pressure washer can be found here.

How to store your pressure washer

You should always store your pressure washer where it won't freeze up. Generally, this means indoors. You should make sure you unplug the washer, and completely disconnect the hose. Make sure you squeeze the trigger on the gun a few times so that all the excess water is removed completely and then disconnect all the components. You should pour out the soup and hang up the cable before moving the washer indoors. Most Karcher units are pretty portable, but remember to get help if you need it.

Repairing your pressure washer

No matter how careful you are, there will be times when you need to repair your pressure washer. Here’s your guide to the three most common problems and how to solve them:

  • Low pressure 
    This is most commonly caused by issues in your nozzle. Make sure you completely unblock it and see if that fixes it, if not you may need to look at acquiring replacement parts.
  • Leaks
    Leaks can lead to low water pressure, or might just create a mess. This is generally due to a faulty seal, and you'll need to run a full diagnostic on the pressure washer, and typically you'll have to fully replace the seal.
  • Engine issues
    Over 25% of pressure washer owners experience problems with the engine. If your engine is sputtering and noticeably struggling, then you've likely got an issue with the carburetor. Most of the time, this can be fixed with cleaning, but you may need a professional to take a look. Your warranty will probably cover it though. The video below gives you a guide on repairing pressure washers

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the Karcher Rapid Exchange Program, and how does it work?

Instead of offering repairs for Karcher products within warranty, they offer a replacement product. This allows you to get up and running again much more quickly and eliminates weeks of downtime.

Can I use hot or warm water on my Karcher pressure washer?

All Karcher pressure washers are compatible with hot or warm water, and actually, using warmer water will make the cleaning much more efficient.

Are there any essential Karcher pressure washer accessories that I should be using?

Karcher offers a whole range of accessories that are compatible with all of their units. Trigger guns allow you to use the washer easily, rotatable lances give a greater reach to your washer, and turbo nozzles allow you to concentrate the pressure in key areas. All of these are worth having to make your clean more effective, but it’s worth checking out their full range.

How do I set up the detergent injection system in a Karcher pressure washer?

You can find a full guide to setting up the detergent injection system here, but for electric models, you simply need to position the spray wand in a low-pressure setting to activate the detergent injection.

Where can I find the Karcher pressure washer operating manuals?

The Karcher washer operating manuals can be found on their website here.

Where is the best place to buy these pressure washers and Karcher pressure washer parts?

Amazon offers the widest selection of Karcher pressure washers and generally has the most competitive prices, giving you the best value.


Conclusion

Karcher pressure washers stand out in the crowd, and they've made a name for themselves internationally by combining quality and innovation. For us, the Karcher K5 Premium Washer is a cut above and well suited for all kinds of jobs. It’s affordable but effective, allowing even those with a limited budget to get a high-quality pressure washer. Karcher knows their craft and has a long history of meeting user needs. If you want a robust and reliable pressure washer, then they really are the brand to go for.

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