Convenient hose storage
No idle down
Small gas tank
Hose connection close to the ground
Charging the 12V battery is a pain
Cleaning the outside of your house and your yard can be a challenge. The common tools you use for inside cleaning can't handle the dirt, grime, and mold that accumulate on porches, siding, and driveways. To tackle these tough areas, you need the forceful flow of a power washer, like the RYOBI 3000 PSI Honda E-Start Pressure Washer.
Power washers come in a range of capacities, from electric units for general cleaning to gas-powered beasts that'll blast the paint off your car if you are not careful. We put the RYOBI 3000 PSI Pressure Washer to the test to see how it would clean our dirtiest outdoor items.
Setup Process: Ready to go in 15 minutes
This pressure washer comes partially assembled. The wheels are already attached, but you do need to attach the handle, which snaps into place with a pushpin-style locking mechanism. The spraying wand slides into the sprayer handle, which is attached to a hose that screws onto the power washer. RYOBI includes a small can of oil that needs to be added to the engine before you start using it. Add oil, add gas, and you are ready to go. All told, it takes about 15 mins from opening the box to firing up the power washer.
The pressure tips are conveniently stored on the handle, making them easy to reach when we needed them.
Performance: Powerful for household cleaning
The RYOBI 3000 starts quickly and easily and builds water pressure quickly. This model has a high idle when you are not using it, but it does not vibrate around like other, less expensive models. It does not have an idle down feature that protects the power washer from damage when you are not spraying. The trigger is easy to pull and has a lever-style locking mechanism that is off by default, but it’s easy to set when needed. The long hose allows you to wash a large area before you have to move the unit.
As the name implies, the RYOBI 3000's water pressure is 3,000 PSI (pounds per square inch), and the water flow is 2.3 GPM (gallons per minute). This is more than enough power for household usage, including cleaning sidewalks and driveways. It also has (almost) every accessory you need. The unit ships with four color-coded, quick-connect nozzles, including a powerful 0-degree nozzle, a mid-range 25-degree one, a gentle 40-degree option, and a soap nozzle.
We were able to clean a dirty swingset, grimy house siding, and even a mud-covered car using a combination of the different nozzles. (The 40-degree nozzle that provides a gentler water stream suitable for washing a car or an RV.) Though the included nozzles cover a wide range of cleaning jobs, we do wish RYOBI had included another nozzle between the 0- and 25-degree nozzles. The 0-degree can be too powerful for some cleaning tasks—it can damage wood, while the 25-degree is not powerful enough. Something in the middle like a 15-degree nozzle would be perfect for preparing surfaces for painting and cleaning stubborn stains without damaging the wood.
The standout feature of this pressure washer is the electric start, which we found makes the power washer such a pleasure to use. Just turn on the washer, pull the choke, and press the electric start button. Within seconds, the power washer roared to life, meaning we were able to get busy with our washing. When we needed to stop to refill the gas or top off the soap, we could just turn off the power washer, knowing it'd only take a simple press of the button to get it back working again.
We do wish RYOBI had included another nozzle between the 0- and 25-degree nozzles.
Design: The good outweighs the bad
RYOBI made several smart choices and a few mistakes when designing this 3000 PSI pressure washer. We appreciated the choice of tires—they will never go flat and were big enough to easily move the unit across uneven terrain like grass, mud, and gravel.
We also liked how RYOBI built storage into the unit. The pressure tips are conveniently stored on the handle, making them easy to reach when we needed them. The hose can be coiled and attached compactly to the handle using a hook-and-loop fastener strap. Even the wand sits securely in a holder when we are not using it. There’s a soap tank with a flip cover up front that is easy to access.
The electric start is a killer feature, but the process of charging the 12V battery is a pain. We didn’t like that we had to get down on our hands and knees to access the charging connector at the bottom of the unit. The connector is just a wire that unplugs from the starter and then plugs in to charge. If there is a point of failure on the unit, this would be it.
We also didn't like the garden hose connection, which is on the bottom and back of the unit below the handle. You have to push the power washer, which is more difficult than pulling it. It also sits low to the ground, so you can easily get dirt and grit on hose connections.
Battery Life: Not quite enough
The RYOBI’s electric start is powered by a 12V battery. The battery can be used several times in a row to start the power washer—we used it six times over the course of one day. Plan on recharging the battery after several starts or if the unit has been sitting. It does have a trickle charger that can keep it at full power when it is not being used. The battery is integrated into the power washer, so you need to have a power source nearby to charge it. Though not removable for charging, the battery can be removed and replaced if it fails over time.
The battery is only for starting the power washer and not for operating it. This unit is gas-powered and includes a small 1/4-gallon tank. It runs about 30 to 45 minutes between fill-ups, which is adequate for quick jobs around the house but woefully inadequate for big jobs that require several hours or more of cleaning time.
Noise Level: Not too loud
This pressure washer is powered by a Honda engine, which runs relatively quietly for its size. It’s not the quietest unit on the market, nor is it the loudest. You need to talk loudly while it is operating or move away from the engine if you need to exchange more than just a few words.
Price: Expensive but worth it
Available for about $400, the RYOBI 3000 PSI Pressure Washer is on the higher end of the spectrum. You pay a little bit more for the performance and reliability of the Honda engine and the convenience of the electric start.
The electric start is a killer feature, but the process of charging the 12V battery is a pain.
Competition: A power washer to suit your needs
Sun Joe SPX3000 Electric Pressure Washer: An affordable option at under $200, the Sun Joe SPX3000 is less powerful than the RYOBI, but still capable of completing smaller cleaning jobs. We tested both pressure washers, and they both have their merits. We loved how compact and quiet the Sun Joe washer was, but we didn’t love the shorter wand and the fact that it needed an electrical outlet. Meanwhile, the RYOBI comes with convenient features including electric start and smart storage, but it has some awkward design aspects as well.
SIMPSON MegaShot MSH3125 Pressure Washer: Slightly more powerful than the RYOBI, the 3,200 PSI and 2.5 GPM Simpson offers similar performance but lacks the compact design and convenient electric start of the RYOBI. However, the SIMPSON boasts a bigger gas tank and durable parts that are built to last.
A solid choice.
The RYOBI 3000 PSI Honda E-Start Pressure Washer has the power and portability to handle most outdoor household cleaning chores with ease. The electric start is the power washer’s best feature, and it makes it very easy to use—if you can get past issues like the small gas tank and the awkward charging process.
- Product Name 3000 PSI Honda E-Start Pressure Washer
- Product Brand RYOBI
- MPN RY803000E
- Price $409.00
- Weight 71.2 lbs.
- Product Dimensions 26.5 x 17.5 x 37.5 in.
- Battery 12V trickle charge battery
- Warranty Ryobi 3-Year Limited Warranty; Honda 2-Year Engine Warranty
- What's Included 3000 PSI Electric Start Honda Engine Pressure Washer, trigger handle with M22 connections, metal spray wand, 25 ft. high-pressure hose, 4 nozzles (0º, 25º, 40º, and soap nozzle), operator’s manual