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HQ 964664

JANUARY 4, 2001

CLA-2 RR:CR:GC 964664 JAS


TARIFF NO.: 8424.30.90

Mr. Silvio Favrin
J.C. Hallman Manufacturing Co., Ltd
141 Weber Street S.
Waterloo, Ontario
Canada N2J 2A9

RE: NY 837810 Modified; High Pressure Washer

Dear Mr. Favrin:

In NY 837810, which the Area Director of Customs (now Director of Customs National Commodity Specialist Division), New York, issued to you on March 17, 1989, high pressure washers from Canada were held to be classified in subheading 8424.89.00 (now 70), Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS), as other mechanical appliances for projecting, dispersing or spraying liquids or powders.

NY 837810 also held that the high pressure washers qualified for a reduced rate of duty as an originating good under the United States-Canada Free trade Agreement (FTA) and for duty-free entry under subheading 9817.00.50, HTSUS, as machinery, equipment and implements to be used for agricultural or horticultural purposes, if actually used in agricultural pursuits, and upon compliance with sections 10.131-10.139 of the Customs regulations. We have reconsidered the subheading 8424.89.00 classification and now believe that it is incorrect.

Pursuant to section 625(c), Tariff Act of 1930 (19 U.S.C. 1625(c)), as amended by section 623 of Title VI (Customs Modernization) of the North American Free Trade Agreement Implementation Act, Pub. L. 103-182, 107 Stat. 2057, 2186 (1993), notice of the proposed modification of NY 837810 was
published on November 29, 2000, in the Customs Bulletin, Volume 34, Number 48. No comments were received in response to this notice.


The merchandise in NY 837810 is the Hallman High Pressure Washer. It was described as an electric motor-driven ceramic piston pump designed to increase pressure on water from a faucet to as much as 1,000 lbs. per square inch. It is housed in a heavy metal casing with a plastic cover and mounted on a wheeled chassis with a handle. The water is delivered through a high-pressure hose to a gun assembly to be sprayed through a nozzle onto the target article. Germicides and detergents may in some cases be mixed with the water to enhance the device’s cleaning capability. The High Pressure Washer may be used to clean farm machinery as well as house exteriors, cars, decks, boats, lawn equipment, sidewalks, gutters, patio furniture, among other things.

The HTSUS provisions under consideration are as follows:

8424 Mechanical appliancesfor projecting, dispersing or spraying liquids or powders; steam or sand blasting machines and similar jet projecting machines:

8424.30.80(now 90) Other steam or sand blasting machines and similar jet projecting machines


8424.89.00 (now 70) Other


Whether Hallman High Pressure Washer is a jet projecting machine similar to steam or sand blasting machines.


Under General Rule of Interpretation (GRI) 1, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS), goods are to be classified according to the terms of the headings and any relative section or chapter notes, and provided the headings or notes do not require otherwise, according to GRIs 2 through 6.

The Harmonized Commodity Description and Coding System Explanatory Notes (ENs) constitute the official interpretation of the Harmonized System. Though not dispositive, the ENs provide a commentary on the scope of each heading of the Harmonized System. Customs believes the ENs should always be consulted. See T.D. 89-80. 54 Fed. Reg. 35127, 35128 (Aug. 23, 1989).

Initially, the provision in subheading 8424.30.90, if it applies, is more specific than subheading 8424.89.00 (now 70), which is a “basket” provision. In our opinion, whether power washers are jet projecting machines “similar” to steam or sand blasting machines, requires that we identify the characteristic or characteristics that steam or sand blasting machines have in common, and whether the power washer at issue shares that/those characteristics. To be classifiable in subheading 8424.30.90, HTSUS, the pressure washers the subject of NY 837810 must be substantially the same as steam or sand blasting machines in terms of design, construction, function, and use.

The ENs on p. 1287, under the heading (C) STEAM OR SAND BLASTING MACHINES AND SIMILAR JET PROJECTING MACHINES, include the following:

Sand blasting machines and the like are often of heavy construction and sometimes incorporate compressors. They are used for de-scaling or cleaning metal articles, for etching or putting a matt surface on glass, stone, etc, by subjecting the articles to the action of high pressure jets of sand, metal abrasives, etc. They are usually fitted with dust extractors to remove the residual sand and dust. The heading also covers steam blast appliances used, for example, for de-greasing machined metal, etc.

From the EN description, it is apparent that sand blasting machines, steam blast appliances, and pressure or power washers all have the same essential components, i.e., motor, pump or piston and spraying wand or nozzle; steam blast appliances and power washers commonly incorporate a heater coil which gives them the ability to create steam; whether using steam or sand, pressurized water or heated pressurized water, alone or in combination with a cleaning solvent, all are of a class or kind of machines and appliances used for cleaning purposes to remove foreign matter from a target surface; and (3) all project their cleaning media, that is, they discharge or emit a forceful stream of effluent from a nozzle or other narrow opening. We conclude that in terms of design, construction, function and use, the pressure washers at issue are jet projecting machines similar to steam or sand blasting machines.

In an effort to achieve uniformity in the interpretation of the Harmonized System (HS) at the international level, Customs regards rulings from other countries that classify identical or substantially similar merchandise as instructive. However, such rulings do not constitute the official interpretation of the HS. For this and other reasons, these rulings shall not be treated as dispositive and Customs is not bound by them. Nevertheless, however, a ruling from the Munich Branch of the German Customs Directory, and another from Revenue Canada have recently been brought to our attention. These rulings classify power washers believed to be substantially similar to the ones at issue here in subheading 8424.30.80 (now 90). These rulings are consistent with our classification under the HTSUS.


Under the authority of GRI 1, the Hallman High Pressure Washer, as described, is provided for in heading 8424. It is classifiable in subheading 8424.30.90, HTSUS.


NY 837810, dated March 17, 1989, is modified accordingly. However, the pressure washer remains eligible for the reduced rate of duty under the FTA, and for free entry under subheading 9817.00.50, HTSUS, both upon compliance with applicable law and Customs Regulations. In accordance with 19 U.S.C. 1625(c), this ruling will become effective 60 days after its publication in the Customs Bulletin.


John Durant, Director
Commercial Rulings Division

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