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How to Replace the O-Rings in a Pressure Washer Nozzle

At some point you’re going to have to replace the o-rings in a pressure washer nozzle since rubber o-rings eventually deteriorate. What’s more, it’s beneficial to know beforehand how to replace o-rings so you can avoid wasting too much time and injuring yourself, as many persons are prone to do when changing them.

Things You Will Need

  • Flat tip screwdriver (1.4 mm or less by 4 inches)
  • Ice pick
  • Straight long-nose needle nose pliers (long-neck, 5 inches)
  • Table-top vise grip

At some point you’re going to have to replace the o-rings in a pressure washer nozzle since rubber o-rings eventually deteriorate.  What’s more, it’s beneficial to know beforehand how to replace o-rings so you can avoid wasting too much time and injuring yourself, as many persons are prone to do when changing them.

Not changing o-rings in a timely manner means continual messy water leaks that almost certainly trickle back down onto you while you’re pressure washing, loss of maximum water pressure, and unnecessary water use and costs. 

  1. Place the pressure washer nozzle into a table-top vise grip, with the nozzle placed in such a way so as to make it easy for you to get at the o-ring and work on the pressure washer nozzle. Finish tightening the table-top vise grip, once you’ve best positioned the pressure washer nozzle.
  2. Plunge the screwdriver or ice pick into the o-ring with the intent of sticking it into the o-ring. Carefully, slowly, and precisely pull out the o-ring from within the recess in which it functions toward the middle of the pressure washer nozzle. (Completely pull out the o-ring, if at all possible.)
  3. Use the long-nose needle nose pliers to reach the o-ring and finish pulling it out from the pressure washer nozzle. Continue pulling out the pieces of o-ring if it has deteriorated and can be removed only piece by piece.
  4. Insert the new o-ring into the pressure washer nozzle, one half at a time. (It’s impossible, due to the difference in circumference size between the pressure washer nozzle opening and the recess in which the o-ring functions to put the entire o-ring in at one time.) Use the screwdriver or ice pick to work the o-ring one piece at a time into the recess in which it functions.
  5. Use your finger to feel around the o-ring once you've inserted it to make sure it is completely seated all the way into the recess.
  6. Tip

    If the o-ring is on the outside of the pressure washer nozzle, simply roll it out of its recess, and off the plug of the pressure washer nozzle, and roll a new o-ring onto the plug and into the recess. Use a small flat head screwdriver, if necessary, to get it started out of its recess, and then continue rolling it off of the pressure washer nozzle.

    Warning

    If you don't have acess to a table-top vise grip, you can firmly grasp the pressure washer nozzle in your hand and use the same tools to replace the o-ring. However, be very careful you don't stick yourself, particularly your hand or abdomen, when trying to stick the o-ring with either the screwdriver or ice pick. (O-rings can be problematic to replace.)

Things You Will Need

  • Flat tip screwdriver (1.4 mm or less by 4 inches)
  • Ice pick
  • Straight long-nose needle nose pliers (long-neck, 5 inches)
  • Table-top vise grip

About the Author

Educated at the University of New Orleans, Troy Pankey started writing many years ago. His written material is quite varied, and includes, advertising copy, product reviews, restaurant menus, musician and business owner profiles and interviews, among many other writing forms. He currently lives near New York City, where he pursues freelance writing opportunities both in traditional print and on the Web.

Photo Credits

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  • Jupiterimages/Photos.com/Getty Images