In order to get the best results from your pressure washing system, you need the right high pressure hose and trigger spray guns to deliver the water or solution to the surface you're working on. Selecting well can make the job go much smoother.
With trigger spray guns, you can choose from a number of different types. "Pistol" style guns are the typical design, and they come in different subtypes. But basically these are industry standard spray guns that can stop the flow of water and have an "unloader" valve. Usually these guns have an inlet port that the hose attaches to and an outlet port to a wand. When the trigger is released, the gun is closed and water flow stops. When the trigger is squeezed, it opens the nozzle, letting the water shoot through.
The way it works is simple: when the trigger is released, a ball in the gun is forced by the water flow and a spring to seat itself in a seal, stopping the flow. When the trigger is squeezed, the ball is forced from the seat and water can flow once again. Don't be tempted to use various rigs to keep the trigger pulled to keep your hand from getting tired. You can get trigger guns today that require a lot less of a squeeze to keep the trigger open if hand fatigue is a problem.
More expensive trigger spray guns don't have to be thrown away but can be rebuilt with simple rebuild kits. Spray guns that are treated well can last around 250 hours unless you use a lot of bleach, which will shorten its life significantly. But you can get guns specifically designed to accommodate bleach. They cost a bit more, but they're well worth it if you use bleach often.
As for the high pressure hoses that deliver the water from the pump to the spray gun, they must be specially matched to a pressure washing system. These hoses have an inner core through which the water flows, a wire wrap surrounding the inner core to protect it, sometimes an extra layer of wire wrap (for hot water hoses and those with psi ratings of more than 5,000), and an outer cover of rubber.
For applications where a hose has to make extreme bends, you may want to check out thermoplastic hoses. In regular applications, they won't last as long as rubber, but for cleaning or unblocking sewer lines or other places where extreme bends are necessary, they're great.
Most hoses have an outer diameter (OD) of 3/8 inch and are used on pressure washers rated for three to five gallons per minute flow rates. A larger diameter hose may be better for systems with higher flow rates. If you're working on roof tiles or concrete, beware of red and black hoses, which can leave marks. Blue and gray hoses tend not to do this.
In general if you choose hoses that are pressure rated for a slightly greater pressure than your system, it will last longer. But don't get a hose rated for a lower pressure than your system due to danger and accelerated wear and tear.
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