Unexplainable issues with pump (update)

Brought the machine back to the store, and the manager was very helpful and was willing to take it back in and repair and use it as a rental unit, and give me a whole new unit in return. However here’s some interesting info:
The Honda tech came out and explained to me that the pump wasnt overfilled, and that all of the karcher shark pumps are set up like that… and I looked at some of the other shark washers that had the same style pump (some were hot water washers), and they were in fact over the fill dot as well. He also told me they come from the factory with oil in them and they only oil up the gas engine when it comes in. He also told me it’s unlikely that the oil blew out a seal, because the oil cap on the pump has a breather and if theres too much oil it would come out of the breather before it would damage a seal.

Any thoughts on this? When I get the new one, if its above the fill line, should I take a little bit out or should I take that guys word for it and leave it alone because maybe the pump was just defective ? I find it hard to beleive that the full line is there for no reason. So I’m going to contact shark and see what they say before anything.

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Call Kevin(karcher support) at 800-771-1881, press 2 when you get the recording. Pumps are shipped with no oil. Vendors and distributors add oil upon receiving them. Proper fluid amount is halfway up on the site glass.


Hey bud, I just got off the phone with karcher support. Might have even been him l cant remember tho, I called before I seen this. And he said the same thing you did that the oil should be halfway through the sight glass. But he didnt say anything about the pump not coming with oil when I mentioned it, so I suppose I’m stumped as far as that’s concerned… I talked to the guy at my retailer and told him what the tech support rep said, and that when it comes in if it’s over the fill dot, that I dont want them to run it until its drained down to the proper level and he was more than fine with assuring that but he insisted that they were using my washer all morning and it has been working fine. I dont know if I’m buying it tho. Sounds like excuses to me. But hopefully this doesn’t happen again. It was more than embarrassing to have happen in the middle of a job, I’ll have to start bringing the gc190 with me as a backup next time just in case. Funny how the gc190 cost a third of the amount of the gx390 and in years of using it it’s never failed me lol.

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Ty for keeping us posted.

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On my experience pumps should be filled half way on the sight glass.
The vendor did the right thing by replacing the unit.
But i would look for another one in your area.


You were having pump problems not engine problems. It wasn’t your Honda GX causing the issue. They are basically two separate pieces of equipment. The Honda GC is an inferior product compared to Honda GX engines. Honda came out with the cheap GC engines to compete in the lower quality homeowner engine market. I’ve had rebuilt both and you can definitely tell a difference with how they are built and with the quality of the parts used.

If they said it has been working fine for them is there anything else that could’ve been causing the problem when you had it? Air getting into the supply line? Low gpm from the supply?

Who knows though. They might be full of it.

I’ve never heard of a sight glass that’s suppose to be filled up all the way. What’s the point of the mark halfway up? If the pump was suppose to be filled up there’s really no need for a sight glass. It kind of defeats the purpose.

I agree with finding a new distributor especially after you found out they were wrong about the oil level. That’s just pure incompetence there. Being a Honda tech doesn’t give you the knowledge to work on pumps or know the pump specs.


I’m sorry the way I worded it was wrong. I dont mean the Honda engine cuz those are great, but rather the simpson pump that’s on the gc190. It’s been great to me !! Lol. I gotta go tomorrow and pick up another one and he said the oil level on the new was same but hell lower it to the sight mark.

I know when I filled the oil in the last new pump it showed over full when it finally got to Alabama and had settled out. I think they come with a certain amount of oil in it for corrosion protection, but yours was FULL.

My vote is also to find a new distributor because the dot in the center of the sight glass is universally used to show proper oil level. If karcher were different they’re reputable enough that they’d install a different sight glass I would think.