By Tony Barthel
If you didn’t know, your modern RV has Lippert-made parts in it. A lot of them. Lippert is a huge supplier of parts to the RV world. But they’ve also started building stuff for the aftermarket. You know, things we might find useful in our daily lives or even with our RVs.
As such, they now have a store on their website and send out regular emails with product updates and promotions. Such was how I came across the Lippert Flow Max™ 40-volt portable power cleaner.
Lippert Flow Max 40-volt portable power cleaner
The Lippert Flow Max 40-volt portable power cleaner is a battery-powered water pressure cleaner. It offers six spray settings from the included nozzle and sports a 25-ounce soap bottle on the head. Power comes from a 40-volt battery. Two of these plus a charger are included with the package sold on the company’s website for $241.95. It’s also available on Amazon.
Unlike a gasoline-fired pressure washer, this device draws water through a drop hose that can be dipped into a pool or pond or a bucket. Gotta wash the pool furniture? Just extend the hose into the pool, put some suds in the soap container and you’ll have spiffy pool seats in no time.
Who needs this?
But where I see this serving us RVers is actually in our travels along for the ride. Many’s the time I’ve seen leaves or pollen or other things really junk up an RV. This would be a great way to keep it looking nice. By removing all the attachments it actually folds up into a pretty compact package. And there’s a bag that comes with it that you can put things in.
This would be great for washing down the filthy undercarriage of an RV or a tow vehicle after returning from a dirt road where you’ve been enjoying some boondocking.
How much pressure in the Flow Max 40-volt portable power cleaner
The pressure from the portable power cleaner isn’t quite as powerful as a gasoline-powered pressure washer. But this actually works in our favor as RVers. That high-pressure gasoline-fired pressure washer might be great at getting graffiti off the local business walls. On the other hand, it could cause damage to the fiberglass shell of some RVs and pressure right past the window seals. Not good.
This unit can achieve a maximum of 520PSI – which is still plenty powerful for washing an RV or vehicle. Plus, there are settings that provide more specialized spray patterns – with or without the soap – to really work on cleaning an RV or other things.
And, it’s super convenient not having to make sure there’s gasoline around nor lug a huge, heavy, smelly and noisy gasoline engine. The unit claims to deliver about 28 minutes of continuous use per battery. However, I’ve seen it run closer to 18 minutes.
That might not sound like a lot. But considering you’re not spraying continuously, usually, it’s actually a good amount of time. Plus, as mentioned, it comes with two batteries.
In addition to the normal head with its six settings on the Flow Max 40-volt portable power cleaner, there’s also one with a rotating nozzle. This is a great way to hit those odd spots under the chassis and also wash wheels and such. I could also see someone standing on the ground but using this to wash off the top of a slide room if there’s a bunch of debris up there.
There are high- and low-pressure settings on the device. That means you can spray appropriately for the surface being cleaned. The convenient trigger handle is pretty large. The device is not really that heavy but it seems well enough made.
Considering how compact this is when in travel mode, I could actually see this making sense for RVers to take with them. Add bonus points if you have a toy hauler and bring toys that are fun in the dirt that might need a power washing before you put them back into the toy hauler.
This only draws from a stagnant water source (in other words you can’t hook up a garden hose). Also, the charger is 110 volt, which makes sense. But I’d want to be able to charge it using 12 volt while out in the middle of nowhere. It’s not that big of a deal as I can use a tiny inverter to pull this off, but I’d rather not.
Overall I think the Flow Max 40-volt portable power cleaner could be a valuable tool for some RVers, especially those that really do want to keep their rig or the things in it looking good. Of course it would work for folks in actual homes, as well. But then you’d want to evaluate whether you want a more powerful pressure washer or if this would be sufficient. If you’re just using it for normal cleaning, including vehicles, this should be sufficient and not take up a lot of space in the garage.