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How to wash an RV with a pressure washer: The Right Way

Keeping your RV clean might be difficult. Over time, the vehicle’s sheer size and its exposure to the elements may cause it to get filthy. It’s tough to keep your balance on a ladder when you’re cleaning down your RV, but what else can you do?

How To Wash An RV With A Pressure Washer: The Ultimate Guide is here with some tips and tricks for doing this job safely and efficiently. Read on!

Is It Safe to Pressure Wash My RV?

The simple answer is no. You cannot wash an RV with a pressure washer.


Power washing can cause some significant damage to the exterior of the RV.

The high-pressure water will remove dirt, debris, and any protective coating on the surface, leaving bare metal exposed to rusting or corrosion issues. Not good at all! Also, the wash water will likely be deep inside the seals and seams, resulting in interior corrosion.

Common mistakes on washing your RV with a Pressure Washer

Well, it does work for some people. But they’ve all got one thing in common: experience and knowledge on what not to do when washing an RV with a pressure washer!

What You Might Be Doing Wrong When Using A Pressure Washer To Clean An RV

  • Using the wrong nozzle size is probably the most critical mistake you can make.
  • Using a high-pressure nozzle will wash everything away, including the protective coating on your RV. The result? Corroded metal and an unprotected surface!
  • Another critical mistake is choosing the wrong pressure setting for your wash hose. If too low, you cannot generate enough water flow to do any good cleaning job; if too high, the wash water might damage your RV’s protective coating.
  • Lastly, you should also not use a soap solution for this cleaning job! Soap will stay on the surface after pressure washing and attract dirt quickly afterward. But wait. What can I use? The answer is simple: dishwashing liquid. Dishwashing liquid is a gentle cleaner that will wash away dirt and debris without damaging your RV.

How To Wash An RV With A Pressure Washer

Pressure washing in an RV is done differently than pressure washing in a house. Every portion requires a specific pressure and pressing, which you must do correctly, or else you might ruin your RV’s appearance as well as its construction.

Washing the RV Roof

Wash your RV’s rooftop with a low-pressure nozzle starting at the top. Then, when you get to the sides of your RV, use another low-pressure sprayer. It is essential! 

If you aim high-pressure water stream against metal seams and edges on an RV roof, this could cause leaks if not properly sealed or protected.

Washing the RV Sides and Exterior

Now wash your RV using a high-pressure nozzle on one side of it at a time while standing in front. Then use another low-pressure sprayer to clean dirt and debris off its other exterior surfaces like windows, wheels, etc. 

When finished with this step, inspect for any leaks that might have happened from pressure washing.

Washing the RV Interior and Windows

Wash the interior of your RV with a wet mop, sponge, or cloth by using water mixed with dishwashing liquid (you can also spray it down). If you don’t like to wash this way, use a handheld high-pressure nozzle on its window seals to wash away dust and dirt.

Washing Gaskets and Seals

Wash your exterior doors, windows, wheel gaskets, or seals with a high-pressure nozzle. It will remove any dirt that has become stuck in its grooves.

Washing Wheels and Rims

You can wash your wheels and rims the same way you wash an RV roof. Use a low-pressure nozzle to wash the dirt away with water mixed with dishwashing liquid (you can also spray it down).

Metal surfaces

The most simple to clean is metal that has been painted. You may use the same types of cleaners and chemicals you use for your vehicle wash. The primary problem with RVs’ metal siding is that it’s susceptible to water ingress when using a pressure washer. 

If you wish to utilize it, maintain the nozzle at least one foot away from the surface.

Fiberglass surface

It’s often seen in older RVs, generally unpainted, and has a few flashy decals. It would be ideal to pressure wash fiberglass using RV wash and wax products specifically formulated for it.

When pressure washing, keep the decals out of the way. The force might cause them to peel off soon. Also, if the fiberglass is new, it could have transparent coat paint. 

It would be ideal if you used RV-specific washing chemicals. However, you may also get away with auto products in most situations.

Tips on washing an RV with a pressure washer

Well, the best way to wash your RV with a pressure washer is by using some dishwashing liquid and doing it on low pressure.

First, wash away loose dirt by rinsing it off with water. Then spray some dishwashing liquid directly onto the surface of your trailer or motorhome where you want to clean – this is where you should use your low-pressure wash hose.

To wash away the remaining dirt, rinse off again with water and wipe dry using cloths – this will ensure no soap residue left on it. You’re done!

There should not be any problem following these steps when washing an RV with a pressure washer.

Cleaning Tip

When washing, always aim a high-pressure water stream against metal seams and edges on your RV’s exterior; this will prevent any leaks from happening.

A recommended power washer, foam cannon, and cleaning chemicals

We recommend the following cleaning tools if you plan on using a pressure washer or foam cannon to clean your RV.

Last update on 2022-01-13 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

The Sun Joe SPX1000 is a low-pressure portable pressure washing machine that produces only 1450 PSI. People frequently select Sun Joe items for RV pressure cleaning, one of the most often mentioned products.

Last update on 2022-01-13 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

This foam cannon, made of high-quality materials and rated for auto detailing, has been on the best product list for years. For truck washing, RV wash, and automobile detailing, this foam cannon has always been one of our top picks.

Last update on 2022-01-05 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

This car wash soap is intended to clean and care for your RV in simple steps. It is gentle and effective, and it will not harm the finish of your RV. You can use it on the body, windows, tires, wheels, and undercarriage. It is a concentrated formula that washes away easily and leaves your RV with a nice clean finish every time.

Alternatives to RV Pressure Washing: Waterless cleaning options

With little or no water, you can clean your RV by hand washing it and applying an RV wax product.


  • Use a soft cloth to clean the surface and then wax it.
  • Wipe the skillet with a separate microfiber cloth to remove any remaining food particles. You’ll need a lot of towels to finish the task since the towels will get dirty over time.
  • When the rags get filthy, replace them. Otherwise, you’ll spread dirt across the RV’s fiberglass surface without genuinely cleaning it.

Final Verdict on How To Wash An RV With A Pressure Washer

So, wash your RV the right way using a gentle dishwashing liquid and a low-pressure wash hose.

Yes, a pressure washer can do quick cleaning work, but not for an RV – go figure! But I hope you find this article helpful in learning how to clean an RV with a pressure washer.

Thank you for reading! Please like, share, and subscribe to our blog if this article has helped you in any way.


What can I use to clean my fiberglass RV if it’s filthy?

I recommend utilizing a wax-based cleaning solution. It will clean and preserve your fiberglass.

Is it okay to use Dawn dish soap to wash my RV?

No, that’s not a good idea. The term “dishwashing” implies that you’re washing dishes, and dishwashing products include chemicals. That will remove grease and oils from your gaskets and seals, which can cause harm to them.

What is the most effective approach to wash an RV?

We recommend parking your RV in a shaded area to clean the outside. Spray it with water first to remove the dust. Then, using a lot of clean water and a car-washing mitt or sponge, wash your RV from top to bottom. You may also use a mild car-washing soap.

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Brett Tyler

Brett Tyler

I’m Brett Tyler, an entrepreneur, but more importantly (well, to me at least), a tool head. I’m passionate about all sorts of machines and how they work – it’s in my blood.

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