Questions and Answers from the Hotsy Ask An Expert Library
We’ve assembled many of our favorite questions visitors like you have submitted to the Hotsy Expert. Here are a few of the answers to those questions. Visit the links below to read more.
- Can you hook up hot water to a cold water pressure washer?
- How can I tell the exact ratio of soap to water for my pressure washer? Do the tick marks on the knob on the pressure washer correlate to specific ratios?
- I need to clear the burner coil (heat exchanger) on my steam truck. What is the proper procedure?
- How do you remove stains from gutters?
- What is the best solution for removing gum from sidewalks?
- I'm having some issues with the tip of the pressure nozzle getting clogged up with a black gum residue. What's the best way to get that cleaned out?
- Please tell me how hot the water coming out of a Hotsy hot water pressure washer is?
- My pressure washer runs, but won't develop high pressure. What do we adjust?
- I am considering a 5700 series hot water pressure washer, and need venting and clearance requirements for the equipment. Can these units be installed indoors?
- I would like application information on your Aluminum Brightener. How would you recommend using this on small to large aluminum parts?
- I have a hot water washer that smokes really bad when you are running the burner. What's the cause and is there anything I can do to correct it?
Thanks for the question. Unless the pressure washer's pump has been equipped with special seals and packing to withstand hot water, you will drastically reduce the seal life in your pump leading to loss of pressure and the pump needing to be rebuilt. Depending on the manufacturer of the pump and style of pump, warm water (up to 100° F) can be used. If warm water is used it is then very important not to leave the machine in by-pass (the machine running without the trigger engaged/pulled) for longer than 1-2 minutes maximum as the warm water circulating in the by-pass line will gain temperature due to friction of water movement through the head of the pump and fittings causing the warm water to increase in temperature and damaging the seals. Hotsy hot water pressure washer pressurizes water then runs the water through the heating coils. Over the years I have seen many people who needed hot water in their cleaning try and use a hot water heater such as you have in your home. Not only does it effect the pump seal life a 30 gallon hot water heater will only supply a 3 gallon per minute pressure washer with about 7-10 minutes of hot water before needing 30-45 minutes of reclaim time making this very costly and energy inefficient. With a hot water pressure washer in 60-90 seconds you have up to 200 -210°s of hot water and a continuous supply with no reclaim time saving you time, utilities, maintenance expense and money.
When it comes to applying detergents there are several key elements you have to address. The first is water hardness - for every 5 to 6 grains of water hardness it cuts your detergents effectiveness by 20%. The soil application (or what your cleaning) is important as well, so the detergent is applied at the proper pH to clean the surface, while using the least amount of detergent possible. 10.0-10.5 pH for light duty stains, 10.5 – 11.0 pH for medium and 11.0 – 11.5 and up for heavy soils/stains. And the most important is the quality of the detergent. Hotsy has manufactured detergents for over 30 years and makes them specifically for extreme hot water usage. Once these are addressed a chemical orifice can be put in the detergent line and the same consistent water to detergent ratio can be applied saving detergent expense with better wash results. Applying too much detergent can actually leave a white chalky shadow or film on the surface. Your local Hotsy dealer can test your water conditions, soils, stain and application and attach a flow meter to properly set the detergent ratio to get the very best results.
Thanks for the question. If in clearing the coil you are referring to de-scaling the coil to remove any mineral build up, the process requires an acid based de-scaling solution, acid rated/resistant auxiliary pump, and acid rated/resistant plastic pail. Plumbing from the pressure pump is removed and acid solution line is plumbed then pumped into the inlet of the coil, travels through the coil and is circulated back into the pail. Depending on the severity of the scaling recalculating the solution can take 30-60 minutes. On coils with severe scale it may be necessary to dispose of the first quantity of de-scaling solution and circulate new solution. Do not run this solution through your existing pressure pump as it will ruin the pressure seals in the pump and can be harsh on other components. I suggest you contact your local Hotsy dealer to perform this service as they are properly equipped and have the expertise to insure maximum results.
Thanks for the question. Assuming the gutters are painted aluminum, if the stain is caused by mineral deposits, an acid based detergent must be used. Proper application of the acid is a must, as well as safety clothing, eye protection and/or a face shield must be used. Plant life/foliage under the gutters must be protected along with any glass windows, because if the acid were to dry on the glass it will frost them. If the stain is organic caused by tree sap, etc. an alkaline detergent is used. Again protecting the plant life/foliage is important and eye protection should be worn. Alkaline has no ill effect on glass. Your local Hotsy dealer can help you with the detergents and applicators needed to get the job done.
Gum removal with a cold water washer is a time consuming exercise as the cold water makes the gum harder and more difficult to remove, requiring higher pressure to blast the gum from the surface. A Hotsy hot water pressure washer is less labor intensive as it melts the gum and cleans the surface quickly and also leaves less gum residue to be picked up and disposed of. Your local Hotsy dealer listed below can demonstrate how a Hotsy can increase your cleaning power and save you time and money in costly labor expense
There are several things that could be causing your problem with debris plugging the pressure nozzle. With the machine off and the garden hose disconnected, remove the pressure hose from the outlet of the heating coil block. Take a flashlight and inspect the inside of the heating coil for mineral scale, rust or detergent build up on the coil walls. If there is build up the coil would require de-scaling using an acid based product to remove the build up and solve your problem. It is highly recommended to have a Hotsy service technician perform the de-scaling as they are trained in handling the acid and are properly equipped with the auxiliary pump that is needed to circulate the acid through the heating coil.
Hotsy manufactures hot water washers to heat the high pressure water up to 120° F or more above ambient inlet water temperature. If the ambient water temperature is 70°, the water after running through the combustion chamber’s heating coil would raise the temperature 120° or more to around 190° - 200°. Many years ago steam cleaners were the forerunners of the modern day hot water high pressure washers. Steam cleaners super heated the water in the combustion chamber up to 340°- 360°, but due to the laws of physics the explosion that occurred when the super-heated water was released into the atmosphere converting the water to steam, drops the water temperature to 212°F. The hottest water achievable airborne is 212°, or basically boiling. Hotsy pressure washers are equipped with a 248° thermostat and with a few modifications can be modified to produce steam if needed. Please contact your local Hotsy dealer for more information.
Lack of pressure can be caused by many things, such as: a water restriction before the pump, debris caught in a check valve or valves, a faulty unloader valve, seals and packing may need to be replaced in the pump manifold, the machine drawing air into the system or even a plugged pressure nozzle. Your local Hotsy dealer has the repair parts, gauges, tools and expertise to get your machine back to maximum performance in no time.
All Hotsy pressure washers meet or exceed UL 1776 pressure washer standards for safety and are installed daily indoors across the country. Your question regarding venting and clearances would be easy if every City, State and Municipality used the same regulations and building codes but unfortunately they don’t. Your local Hotsy dealer will have the knowledge and the expertise in answering your installation questions and meeting local code.
Aluminum Brightener and Aluminum Brightener II are used to remove oxidation that forms over time on aluminum surfaces. These products should not be used on new aluminum surfaces that are less than 6 months old or that show no sign of oxidation. When it comes to using the Aluminum Brightener products, caution must be used as these are acid based and not user friendly. Protective clothing, rubber gloves and eye protection are required. Other safety precautions must be considered, such as, how the acid is to be applied, are there fine painted, glass, or highly polished aluminum surfaces, foliage or plant life close by that may be effected. Your local Hotsy dealer stocks Aluminum Brightener, acid application accessories, and can instruct you with the information you need to insure you getting the best cleaning results.
Smoke billowing from the exhaust points to a combustion problem and can be caused by several things. Most fuel oil-fired burners are capable of burning #2 diesel, #1 home heating fuel or kerosene. In the southern states we have seen #2 diesel coming from south of the border that isn’t as refined as the #2 diesel refined here in the US. The higher the refining, the cleaner burning the fuel is. Kerosene will burn much cleaner than #2 or #1 diesel. If the fuel isn’t being completely burned in the combustion chamber the unburned fuel will begin to build up on the heating coil, and this residue will begin a sooting problem. Heating coils are designed to breathe, which allows the air/fuel ratio for proper combustion. If the coils have a soot build up, the air/fuel ratio declines and improper combustion occurs creating smoke. Try this...with the machine NOT running and the burner COLD reach into the combustion chamber and run your fingers over the heating coil. It is very likely that you will find them covered in black soot. To correct the problem the coil needs to be removed from the machine, cleaned of all the soot residue and then re-insulated and replaced. Your local Hotsy dealer provides this service.