Briggs & Stratton 020501 Review

Briggs & Stratton 020501

When you are buying a new appliance to take care of your home and property with, you want to make sure you are getting something that is made by a trusted manufacturer. That is because this kind of purchase is an important one – and you need to be absolutely certain that you can rely on the new machine to last over the long term without needing too much maintenance or breaking down. And when it comes to small engine appliances, Briggs & Stratton is one of the most trusted names in the business. For years they have been producing some of the best and most reliable small engines for lawn mowers, snow blowers and pressure washers – along with dozens of other products. The Briggs & Stratton 020501 is a top of the line residential pressure washer. It has everything you will need to keep your home and property looking great.

Review Summary

review summaryThe Briggs & Stratton 020501 is not just a residential pressure washer with a good name backing it up. It is also a very solid machine in its own right. This pressure washer has a powerful engine that supports a robust axial cam pump that can deliver a maximum pressure of 2700 pounds per square inch with a flow rate of 2.3 gallons per minute. The resulting cleaning power rating is high enough to take care of pretty much any home cleanup job you could think to use it for. It is powerful enough to take care of big jobs, but also has enough optional nozzle settings that you can choose the one that is perfect for whatever job you need to use it for.

There is no limit to the different applications you can find around the home for the Briggs & Stratton 020501. You can use it to wash down walls and siding, blast tough oil stains out of concrete and remove grease from the grill. Or, on its lower settings, you can use it to clean windows and wash your car. It has an onboard soap reservoir, too, so you can cut through tough stains with ease.

Specifications

review specificationsThe Briggs & Stratton 020501 is a two wheeled, residential pressure washer with dimensions of 25 x 22 x 24 inches that weighs just 65 pounds, which will make it easy to store and maneuver. It has an engine made in-house with 175 cc displacement and overhead valve design.

Type Residential
Dimensions 25 x 22 x 24
Power Gas
Engine Manufacturer Briggs & Stratton
Engine 175cc OHV
PSI 2700
GPM 2.3
Power Rating 6210
Pump Axial cam
Cold/Hot Cold
Spray Gun Pro-style
Nozzle 4 (0°, 25°, 40°, soap)
Hose 1/4-inch x 30-foot
Hose Material PVC/plastic
Wheels 10-inch pneumatic
Weight 65 pounds
Warranty 1 year

The axial cam pump on the Briggs & Stratton 020501 provides a max pressure of 2700 PSI and a flow rate of 2.3 gallons per minute. The machine produces cold water sprays through a pro-style wand with three pressure settings. It has a 30 foot PVC plastic hose and 10-inch pneumatic wheels.

Description

review descriptionAs soon as you unbox the Briggs & Stratton 020501, you will clearly be able to see why this company is one of the most trusted ones in small appliance engine manufacturing. The overall design of this residential pressure washer is sleek, without any bells or whistles, but it is obviously made perfectly for the job it is meant to do. It has a low center of gravity, which is important on pressure washers: there is always a risk that you may accidentally tip them over if they have a high center of gravity while you are pulling on the hose.

The engine is a robust 175 cubic centimeters with an overhead valve design, which will allow it to produce the maximum possible power in a small space. And the axial cam pump can deliver a cleaning power rating of over 6,000 – which places it well above average for a residential pressure washer. The Briggs & Stratton 020501 has the kind of power and cleaning ability that will allow you to take care of any cleaning job you could think to use it for around your property, whether on the house itself or around the yard.

And the Briggs & Stratton 020501 is made of extremely durable materials. It has a stainless steel frame that will stand up to tough conditions, and brass fittings at its connections. All too many residential pressure washers come with inferior plastic fittings, which will almost always develop a leak eventually. The tires are pneumatic, so they will almost never need a refill, and the hose is made of tough PVC Plastic. Not only that, but the hose is also 30 feet long, which means you will have a larger range of motion around the machine while you are working. This is a very solid residential pressure washer.

Pros

review prosThere are a lot of reasons why a gas powered residential pressure washer like the Briggs & Stratton 020501 makes the most sense for a homeowner. This machine has the kind of power you need to clean a lot of different stains. It will run anywhere you can think to take it. And it has the kind of outstanding design and durable parts that will allow it to stand up to even the toughest conditions.

  1. Powerful Briggs & Stratton engine : Briggs & Stratton has been making engines for small machines for decades – and because of that, they are one of the leaders in the industry. The engine in the Briggs & Stratton 020501 has a displacement of 175 cubic centimeters and an overhead valve design. That means it will be able to provide a lot of power to the axial pump without weighing a lot or taking up too much space. And you can rely on the engine for years.
  2. Maintenance free axial cam pump : The axial cam pump on the Briggs & Stratton 020501 is a traditional design, and because of that it has the advantage that you will almost never have to provide maintenance in order to keep it running well. And it provides the kind of elevated cleaning power rating that you want in order to be able to use this pressure washer on a lot of different projects around the house. There is almost no project to big for this pressure washer.
  3. 1 gallon detergent reservoir : Most residential pressure washers only come with a special spray nozzle that dispenses soap or detergent into the water flow as it passes out of the spray wand. This works, but it does not give the kind of mix of soapy water that is best for cleanup jobs. The Briggs & Stratton 020501 has a 1-gallon soap reservoir onboard, so you will never run out of detergent, and you’ll get the kind of soapy spray you need.
  4. Durable parts and smart design : The Briggs & Stratton 020501 has a design that places the center of gravity very low to the ground. This prevents it from being susceptible to the kind of tipping over accidents that so many other residential pressure washers are prone to. And it is made of durable parts – from the wheels, to the hose, to the engine and frame – so in the event that you do have an accident, the pressure washer will be unscathed.
  5. Compact and lightweight : And even with all of those great features – durable parts, powerful engine and axial cam pump, onboard soap tank – the Briggs & Stratton 020501 remains a very light and compact residential pressure washer. It has overall dimensions that will make it very easy to store in your garage or work room without it getting in the way. And it weighs just 65 pounds, which means it will be very easy for anyone to use it.

As you can see, the Briggs & Stratton 020501 is not just a great residential pressure washer that is backed up by a solid name. It has the kind of power and performance you need in order to take on big jobs and knock them out quickly and efficiently. In every area, the Briggs & Stratton 020501 goes above and beyond what you normally expect in a typical pressure washer. This is a very solid machine.

Cons

review consNow, in spite of the fact that it has so many very excellent features, a great company backing it up, and a cleaning power rating that is well above average, there are a few areas in which the Briggs & Stratton 020501 is not quite perfect. It’s a bit surprising, considering how well it performs overall, that there are still a few oversights. None of these should present serious problems, but let’s take a look.

  1. Non-CARB compliant : Noncompliance with California Air Resource Board emissions standards is not uncommon in gas powered small engine residential machines, the Briggs & Stratton 020501 included. It is really too bad that these standards exist and prevent such excellent products as this one from being available to consumers. Not only can you not buy it in California, but you also will not be able to use it in any of the other fourteen states that enforce these standards.
  2. Only four nozzle options : While four nozzle options will generally be more than enough for you to take care of the variety of cleaning projects you will need to do around your house, it is always a good thing to have more options. A lot of residential pressure washers have five nozzles, and I do wish that the Briggs & Stratton 020501 did as well, just so you could have a bit more control when choosing the pressure to use.
  3. Cold water spray only : A number of gas powered residential pressure washers have a hot water spray option, and it is too bad that the Briggs & Stratton 020501 does not. While the high cleaning power rating and the fact that it has a 1 gallon soap tank onboard will allow you to deal with just about any stain you encounter, it’s again great to have more options. Sometimes you want to blast a stain out with water only – and hot water is useful then.
  4. Produces a high volume of fumes : This is also not uncommon for gas powered residential pressure washers, especially when they are not CARB compliant. The engine on the Briggs & Stratton 020501 produces a high volume of fumes. This is not particularly a problem unless you are intending to use it indoors or in an enclosed space. Make sure the space is very well ventilated, or else you will have to use a respirator to protect yourself.
  5. Wand is a bit difficult to use : The spray wand on the Briggs & Stratton 020501 has a safety feature that has its advantages and drawbacks. You have to press a safety catch before you can pull the trigger to produce a high pressure spray of water. On the one hand, this prevents accidents, which is important with machines like this. On the other hand, the catch is not located in a spot that will make it easy to use, so this may present issues.

So – I think you will agree with me that none of these Cons is the type of really problematic issue that will tank a residential pressure washer. Some of them are just what you normally expect when you are buying a gas powered small machine, and the others are either minor inconveniences or else not real problems. Overall I do not think any of these Cons take away too much from all of the great Pros.

Product Comparison

review comparisonBut you should never stop your search for the perfect residential pressure washer just because you have read a list of its Pros and Cons. These tools can give you a good idea of whether it is right for your needs, but they do not tell you if it is the best one on the market. To determine that, you should do some comparison shopping. The following table compares the Briggs & Stratton 020501 with two similar models.

  Briggs & Stratton 020501Briggs & Stratton
020501
Generac 6412Generac
6412
Simpson MSH3125-SSimpson
MSH3125-S
Type Residential Commercial Residential
Dimensions 25 x 22 x 24 20.6 x 21 x 39.5 33 x 21 x 19
Power Gas Gas Gas
Engine Manufacturer Briggs & Stratton Generac Honda
Engine 175cc OHV 212cc OHV GCV190 OHC
PSI 2700 3000 3100
GPM 2.3 2.8 2.5
Power Rating 6210 8400 7750
Pump Axial cam Easy-access axial cam OEM Technologies
Axial cam
Cold/Hot Cold Cold Cold
Spray Gun Pro-style Ergonomic Pro-style
Nozzle 4 (0°, 25°, 40°, soap) 3 (0°, 25°, soap) 5 (0°, 15°, 25°, 40°, soap)
Hose 1/4-inch x 30-foot 1/4-inch x 30-foot 1/4-inch x 25-foot
Hose Material PVC/plastic PVC/plastic High pressure
poly-braided
Wheels 10-inch pneumatic 10-inch solid 10-inch pneumatic
Weight 65 pounds 68.5 pounds 78 pounds
Warranty 1 year 2 years 1 year

As you can see, the Briggs & Stratton 020501 has a cleaning power rating that is comparable to the other two pressure washers, even though one of them is a commercial grade model. While it is a bit lower than what either of the other two offer, it is also the most compact model and the most lightweight. It’s also the only one with an onboard soap tank and Briggs & Stratton engine.

Conclusion

review conclusionWhen you are shopping for a new appliance for your home, you always want to make sure you are as thorough as possible in order to be confident that you are getting the best product out there. So let’s take one more look at the Pros and Cons lists in order to cover all of our bases.

Conclusion Pros

  1. Powerful Briggs & Stratton engine.
  2. Maintenance free axial cam pump.
  3. 1 gallon detergent reservoir.
  4. Durable parts and smart design.
  5. Compact and lightweight.

With its powerful engine and maintenance free axial cam pump, you can count on the Briggs & Stratton 020501 to hold up over the long term and consistently provide the kind of ability and performance you need. It’s also well designed and durable, and it has thoughtful notes like a soap tank.

Conclusion Cons

  1. Non-CARB compliant.
  2. Only three nozzle options.
  3. Cold water spray only.
  4. Produces a high volume of fumes.
  5. Wand is a bit difficult to use.

While the Briggs & Stratton 020501 is not compliant with CARB regulations and produces a lot of fumes, these are both to be expected on a gas powered appliance in most cases. And the rest of the Cons do not present the kind of problems I would consider serious at all.

Final Word

Briggs & Stratton is a trusted name in small engine and appliance manufacturing for a very good reason. This is a company that consistently produces very high quality engines and engine parts and has been doing so for many years. It follows logically that they would also produce very high quality residential machines like the 020501 residential pressure washer. And this is definitely the case.

With its powerful engine and outstanding pump design, the Briggs & Stratton 020501 will be able to conquer just about any cleanup job you could think to use it for, no matter how big or small. It presents the kind of high cleaning power rating you need for tough jobs, but also has enough options that will allow you to take care of more delicate tasks as well. All things considered, I think this is a very solid residential pressure washer that will serve you well for a long time.

Best Price

review pricesIn today’s economy, you want to not only make sure that you are getting one of the best products you can find in your price range; you also want to make sure you are not topping out at the very high end of your price range. With the Briggs & Stratton 020501, you do not have to do this. It is very reasonably priced, and a lot less expensive than a lot of other residential pressure washers that have very similar cleaning power ratings, engine ability, and parts & design. Overall, I consider this to be a fairly priced residential pressure washer that will be well worth the price.

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