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Can You Pressure Wash a Snowmobile Engine?

Can You Pressure Wash a Snowmobile Engine?

Maintaining your snowmobile and keeping it clean is part of ensuring that your snowmobile lasts a long time. A lot of grease, dirt, and debris can accumulate on the snowmobile’s engine, especially after a season of frequent use. To keep your machine looking and running great, you should ensure that the engine is clean. 

You should not use a pressure washer to clean your snowmobile engine because you risk damaging your engine and its bearings. Instead, you should use a hose or scrub with a brush and some water. 

In this article, I’ll explain why you shouldn’t pressure wash a snowmobile engine and how to clean your snowmobile safely and effectively. If you have a dirty snowmobile, or you anticipate having one in the future, keep reading! 

Should You Pressure Wash a Snowmobile Engine?

You shouldn’t use a pressure washer to wash your snowmobile engine. The intense water flow from a pressure washer could damage the fragile engine and its bearings. You can effectively clean your snowmobile engine using alternative methods. 

The engine is an extremely important part of your snowmobile, so you should treat it with care. While using a pressure washer to speed up the cleaning process may be tempting, you shouldn’t use a pressure washer on your engine. The engine is simply too delicate, and you risk damaging it or some of its components if you apply too much pressure to it (source). 

You should really only clean your engine if it is noticeably dirty because you do risk damaging it every time you decide to clean it, which would be an expensive mistake. If you look at your engine and decide that it does need a good cleaning, there’s no need to get a pressure washer involved. 

To clean your engine, you’ll need some gloves to avoid getting grease on your hands. I recommend using the Wostar Nitrile Disposable Gloves (link to Amazon). I like these gloves because they are durable and comfortable, and they can stretch to accommodate many different hand sizes. I also appreciate that these gloves are silicon-free. 

Before you clean, you’ll need to take some precautions to avoid damaging the engine. First, you’ll need some large garbage bags. You’ll need to wrap all the electronics under the hood and the oil tank with the garbage bags and tape them down to prevent any water from getting into these parts and frying them (source).

After securing the electronics and the oil tank with garbage bags, you can apply a cleaning solution to the engine. I like the Superclean 101723 Super-Clean Degreaser, available on This cleaner quickly and effectively removes grease, oil, and dirt. I also like that this product is biodegradable. 

You should leave whichever cleaner you use on the engine for five minutes. If your engine is particularly dirty, you can scrub it gently with a brush. After five minutes, wash the cleaner off with some warm water. There’s no reason to use a pressure washer for this step; you can just use a hose or fill a bucket with warm water. 

After you’ve washed off the cleaner, you should dry the engine using a microfiber towel. I like the Amazon Basics Microfiber Cleaning Cloths (link to Amazon). These are extremely gentle cloths, so they won’t damage the engine, and they quickly and effectively dry surfaces. You can also wash and reuse them repeatedly. 

Then, remove the garbage bags and admire your squeaky-clean engine. No pressure washer is needed!  

How To Clean Your Snowmobile

Keeping your snowmobile’s engine clean is essential, but keeping the rest of your snowmobile clean is important, too. Here are some tips for cleaning your snowmobile: 

  • Before you start deep cleaning, spray down your snowmobile with an air compressor. You can remove a lot of dirt and debris with just air from an air compressor, and sometimes that is all your snowmobile needs. So before you start scrubbing, blow air on your snowmobile to get rid of the top layer of grime. 
  • You can use a pressure washer on the plastic outside part of a snowmobile. While you should never use a pressure washer on the engine, you can use one to clean the outside of your snowmobile. Be mindful of where you’re spraying and make sure the water doesn’t get too close to the electronics, as this could damage the parts. 
  • The best way to clean carburetors is to remove them. Removing carburetors is simple and doing so allows you to clean them more thoroughly. 
  • Clean your seat with an interior car cleaner. I recommend the CAR GUYS Detailing Super Cleaner from This cleaner lifts away dirt and grime better than any other cleaner I’ve used, and you can use it on every interior and exterior surface except glass. They also offer a full refund to any customers who aren’t completely satisfied with the product so that you can give this cleaner a try risk-free.   
  • Don’t be afraid to scrub the seat. The seat is actually one of the most durable parts of your snowmobile, so you can scrub it with a microfiber towel quite vigorously if necessary. You may need to be gentle when cleaning other parts of the snowmobile, but not the seat. 
  • Check the status of your tracks and skis when you clean them. The rubber in the tracks of a snowmobile can deteriorate because of moisture, so you should check them regularly. 
  • After cleaning, you should spray the snowmobile with a polish that is non-petroleum-based. Petroleum can damage the plastic parts of your snowmobile, so it is best to avoid this ingredient in whichever polish you apply. You should also avoid using an electric polisher because this could cause damage. 

Keeping your snowmobile clean is not only a great way to keep the vehicle looking great, but it also helps your snowmobile run better and last longer. 


You should not use a pressure washer to clean your snowmobile engine. Pressure washers are too strong, and the intense water flow could damage the engine and its bearings. You can effectively clean your snowmobile engine using a hose or scrubbing with a brush and some water. 

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