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Karcher K3 Follow-Me Electric Power Pressure Washer with 4 Rolling Wheels, 1800 PSI, 1.3 GPM
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- Cleaner. Quicker.
- 1800 PSI, 1.3 GPM Electric Pressure Washer and maximum inlet temperature is 104 degree Fahrenheit
- Only four-wheeled electric pressure washer on the market!
- A Family Handyman Editor's Choice
- Vario Power Spray wand – easily adjust spray right from the wand
- Dirtblaster spray wand – tackles the hardest jobs in half the time
- N-COR pump – durable, non-corrosive and maintenance-free
- Onboard detergent tank
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From the manufacturer
K3 Follow Me - Key Features
Unique Four Wheel Base
Oversized rear wheels and durable front casters are designed to maneuver over and around most obstacles. Follows use to your next cleaning project.
Vario Power Spray Wand
The adjustable Vario Power Spray wand allows you to easily switch from low to high pressure, and everything between, while you clean. Automatically dispenses detergent when in low pressure mode.
DirtBlaster Spray Wand
For your most stubborn stains, attach the included DirtBlaster Wand. Perfect for cleaning concrete, stone, bricks and other hard surfaces. Not for use on delicate surfaces - those should be cleaned with the Vario Power Spray Wand.
Onboard Detergent Tank
Equipped with an onboard detergent tank for easy soap application. For best results use with Kärcher's biodegradable detergents.
|T300 Hard Surface Cleaner||PS40 Power Scrubber||67 Inch Extension Wand||Universal Rotating Wash Brush||Right Angle Wand||Multi-Purpose Detergent, 1-Quart|
|Item Descripion||Features an 11" cleaning head, variable pressure dial, and 32" wand extension||Cleans an 11.5" wide path; three integrated spray nozzles||Extends the reach of your pressure washer nozzle by up to 67"||Water pressure-driven rotating brush automatically dispenses detergent. Includes adapters||Right angle permits cleaning of hard to reach areas||Makes up to 5 gallons of ready to use detergent from 1 quart. Biodegradable. Made in USA|
|Cleaning Application||Cleaning patios, driveways, paths, and decks||Cleaning stairs, patios, facades, garages, walls, paths, and driveways||Great for cleaning difficult to reach areas such as second story windows, large vehicles, and gutters||Ideal for use on cars, trucks, SUV's, RV's, boats, pools, patio furniture and more||Great for cleaning car underbodies, car wheel arches, and gutters||Perfect for cleaning outdoor surfaces such as decks, driveways, sidewalks, stone, brick and more|
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|Shipping||FREE Shipping||FREE Shipping||FREE Shipping||FREE Shipping||FREE Shipping||FREE Shipping|
|Item Dimensions||21.7 x 12 x 12.8 in||15.6 x 13.5 x 33.9 in||22 x 18 x 37 in||17.25 x 16.5 x 33 in||34.33 x 13.07 x 16.77 in||30.8 x 9 x 11 in|
|Item Weight||16.3 lbs||31 lbs||27.8 lbs||20.7 lbs||32 lbs||16 lbs|
Karcher 1800 PSI K3 follow me pressure washer is designed to "follow you" while you work. Compact & convenient design delivers strong cleaning power for most household jobs. The Vario spray wand allows for quick adjustment between low & high pressure without the need to switch nozzles. For stubborn stains, the patented dirt Blaster spray wand will clean up the toughest chores. Onboard detergent tank included.
Top customer reviews
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In my original review and update of 2017 (see below), I gave a 4-star rating to this Kärcher washer for its performance over the spring and summer months of that year. With apologies to those, if any, whom that review may have influenced their purchase decision, I am reducing the rating for the reasons described below.
In mid-autumn 2017, I drained the K3 and filled it with the lubricant and antifreeze Kärcher antigel pump guard using the instructions printed on the antigel bottle. From November until May I stored the K3 in an unheated garage in a horizontal position to insure the liquid remained in the pump. The annual extreme minimum temperature of the zone where I live is between 0 and 5°F in winter (USDA plant hardiness zone 7a), and during last winter was less cold than that so the pump protector ought to have had no problem in protecting the stored device.
Three days ago I prepared the K3 for its first use of 2018. It started immediately and functioned well for 10 minutes or so until its water output suddenly was markedly reduced. As shown in the third figure (whose inset shows the antigel pump guard used), the removal of the high-pressure hose and gun from the pump did not improve the output. The reason for the output reduction was a copious water leak from the bottom of the washer (see the fourth figure) because the plastic wobble pump had cracked.
It is very disappointing that even with proper care, the pump breaks down with so little use. This is not an isolated occurrence. When I bought the K3 in May 2017, making the mistake of trusting the reputation of the manufacturer, 7% of the reviews [28 out of 399] complained of similar leaks during the first or second season of use. Now, one year later, 7.5% of the reviews (47 out of 620) still complain of the same despite the total number has increased by a factor of one and half. This is a noteworthy relative stability over time of the percentage of _early_ pump failures. Prima facie, this stability seems to exclude random cases of "lemon" units from the manufacturer or improper winterization by the customer. From the viewpoint of manufacturing reliability analyses, this favors more a matter of weak materials or production flaws in the _absence_ of proper screening (e.g., the, burn-in screen used for electronic products) to avoid what is known in manufacturing as the "infant mortality stage" of failures (see figure in <bit.ly/2GZkTVK>). At any rate, what this suggests is you have an about 1-in-10 chance of receiving a very-short lived unit when buying a K3 whose pump has been manufactured with the same process and materials as those used by the Kärcher subsidiary in China. The Kärcher company should take a serious look at these failures.
I called Kärcher support since I still have one year left in the warranty. As indicated in my original review, the entry-level wobble pumps can not be economically repaired, so what the company offers is a "rapid exchange program" to replace the device, whose warranty will lapse on the termination date of the old unit's warranty. The support agent was easy to work with, and assured me they will be sending a new unit, and not a refurbished one.
The Kärcher's rapid exchange program is indeed rapid, and should be praised for that. The replacement was delivered seven workdays after I emailed to the company the necessary documentation. On direct inspection of its parts, it has all the signs of a new unit, and was packed in a new box (to judge from its condition and the still unopened push-in slots for hand carrying the box). On a quick initial test, it worked well. Weather permitting, I will put it through the paces this weekend.
--[ ORIGINAL 2017 REVIEW & UPDATE ]--
SUMMARY: [ i ] this is a power washer on four wheels that follows the user when pulled from its high-pressure hose; [ ii ] has a relatively low pressure (2340 nominal 'cleaning' units) best suited for residential use and light-duty tasks; [ iii ] is easy to use when properly assembled as long as its power cord and high-pressure hose are kept untangled; [ iv ] in cold climates, needs 'winterizing' with an antifreeze to protect its seals and valves; [ v ] so far, I have used the washer in a few occasions, and it has performed light and some medium duties well and without significant problems; [ vi ] the tendency of the power cord to tangle is annoying.
1. Kärcher GmbH is a German company with a North American subsidiary in Colorado. The K3 Follow-Me is made by a Kärcher subsidiary in Changsu, China. It comes with a Quick Start guide and an Owner's Manual. Read the former to assemble the K3, and the latter to operate it. The manual is well illustrated and written in concordant English, Spanish, and French; it has important instructions for first-time use and storage of the device.
2. It has steerable front wheels, each one with twin rollers, and fixed rear wheels. The latter can be mounted by simple hand pressure until they click in place, but the former need a more forceful method since the C-ring in the wheel's metal post makes it very difficult to push the post all the way in. I placed the K3, undercarriage up, on top of something soft (to avoid damaging the handle), put a 1-inch thick piece of wood across the spacing between the twin rollers of the wheel (see figures), and then hit the wood with a hammer until the wheel was in position. You may have to hit harder and a few more times than you would probably expect. Avoid hitting and damaging the rollers.
3. A few turns of Teflon tape should be wrapped around the threads of the K3 water inlet before attaching the adapter for connecting the hose end. This helps to avoid hose-connection leaks, so far the second most common complaint in critical customer reviews (but without indicating if Teflon tape was used). Since these are plastic threads, better tighten the adapter simply by hand and not with a wrench -- do not over-torque.
4. It has a 35-foot cord ending in a plug with GFCI [a fast-acting circuit breaker that shuts off power if it detects an electrical fault]. In my K3, the interrupter is tripped each time the cord is unplugged. You must ensure the GFCI is ready by pressing its top button after plugging it in order to power the K3, which itself has a separate on-off switch, and an internal circuit breaker.
5. The high-pressure hose and the power cord tangle quite easily. My experience is that this hose should be untangled before powering the K3, and that the cord should be stored in a zigzag fold tied with a strap, despite that this is less convenient for storage on top of the washer than wrapping it around the handle. The hose/cord entanglement detracts from the convenience of the follow-me capability.
6. It has a siphon-capable, wobble-type pump of a material Kärcher calls N-cor, which is a combination of glass fiber and a synthetic polymer. The pump is corrosion-free and does not need maintenance. (Wobble pumps are entry-level devices that are self-priming, but are not as efficient as other types of pump, and cannot be economically replaced.) Kärcher claims a maximal water pressure at the nozzle of 1800 PSI and a flow rate of 1.3 GPM -- this yields 2340 nominal 'cleaning' units. In practical terms, this translates into light(ish) residential duty and casual use, but keep in mind the actual force of the pressurized jet of water on a surface depends on the nozzle and its distance from the surface.
7. The trigger gun has a child safety lock on the left side of its grip for security purposes.
8. The water jet of the Vario wand I received is geometrically well organized at the wand's high(er) settings but becomes disorganized at the low(er) settings.
The K3 must be purged of water and treated with an antifreeze pump protector before it is stored for winter in order to protect seals and valves, so the pump does not leak when used on the following year. For this I purchased the Kärcher Pump Guard, claimed to help protect seals and valves down to -25°F [-32°C]. This helps avoid post-winter pump leaks, so far the most common complaint in critical customer reviews (but without indicating if an antifreeze protector was used for winterizing).
Kärcher offers a non-transferable limited warranty of 2 years for the motor, pump, and structural and electrical components, and 90 days for standard accessories and attachments. Save your Amazon email confirming the purchase (the date of purchase is the shipping date, since that is when Amazon charges your card). The serial number is in a sticker on the undercarriage of the K3.
UPDATE [ July 30, 2017 ]
I have been using the sprayer for a variety of light and medium duty jobs since May this year, and it has performed flawlessly but for the annoying tangling of the power cord. In particular, it proved its value in a two-day job of cleaning brick walls. The perimeter of our house lot is fenced by light-color brick walls; dirt and mold (a result of hot and humid days, and the irrigation spray system, especially in the north-looking wall faces) darken the bricks and eventually require cleaning. The second figure below shows before-and-after results from a part of the brick wall facing the street's sidewalk -- the segment to the left of the pillar and the pillar itself were sprayed with the Vario wand, whereas the segment to the left of the pillar was not washed at all. It is critical in a job of this kind to clean the bricks without damaging the mortar, and the K3 gave me an excellent result.
I've used it to clean a cement pool deck, asphalt driveway, birdbaths, patio furniture, screen porch floor and furniture, children's swing slide, and lawn mower...all easy and quick to do. Hose and electrical cord are quite long.
Quite lightweight and easy to carry around when needed.
Cons: storage of hose is awkward because of it's stiffness.
Update: Tried to use it to wash car, simply did not function. Returning item.
Dear Karcher; Excellent concept, poor implementation.