Selecting the right industrial parts washer can be a tailored process based on the specific application’s needs. Various types of aqueous cleaning equipment, including cabinets, conveyors, and immersion parts washers, exist for different purposes. While the equipment type varies, certain characteristics are universal. In this blog, we offer guidance on key part washer features and specifications to facilitate the selection of the most suitable equipment for your needs.
The pivotal component in aqueous cleaning equipment is the pump. Its flow rate directs the cleaning fluid to the part, and, combined with exposure time and temperature, facilitates the dissolution of oil, grease, and contaminants from the part surface. Pressure is also significant; for loose chips and coolant, 30-60 psi suffices, while tenacious soils in remanufacturing applications may require 100-200 psi for enhanced cleaning. Vertical seal-less centrifugal pumps offer maintenance advantages, reducing costs and risks of failure with their compact design, maintenance simplicity, and minimized leakage risks.
DESIGN OF SOLUTION TANKS
The size of a solution tank in a parts washer is a critical factor to minimize maintenance costs and maximize efficiency. A small tank requires frequent solution changes and can limit agitation, potentially causing excessive foaming. Additionally, inadequate tank size can result in rapid contamination from removed soils, reducing cleaning efficiency. Insulation of the tank helps conserve heat and reduce energy costs, while oil separation accessories like skimmers or coalescers enhance scrubs efficiency by removing free oils from the solution.
AQUEOUS WASHER HEATING METHODS
Aqueous washers commonly utilize electric or gas heating methods, and the choice often hinges on utility costs. Electric heating systems have lower initial expenses but can prove costlier in the long run, while gas systems require more substantial upfront investment. The overall heating capacity significantly impacts equipment performance, taking into account heating needs for raising the solution and workpiece temperatures to the operating level, heat loss through ventilation and walls, and heating incoming water for solution replenishment. Balancing these factors is crucial to ensure efficient and cost-effective operation of aqueous washers.
GROUNDING OF SOLUTIONS
In applications requiring particulate cleanliness, filtration is crucial. It captures particles at the pump outlet, allowing clean solution to reach workpieces. Bag filters are cost-effective, while cartridge filters offer superior filtration for stringent requirements.
AUTOMATED SYSTEMS AND FIXTURES
When parts have complex features, fixtures help position workpieces in the optimal position for cleaning and drying. For cleaning, fixtures allow for dedicated nozzles or flushing mechanisms to target critical areas and remove trapped contamination. For drying, the fixture design can position the parts to favour drainage and allow for dedicated blow-off devices to remove liquid from specific features.
Fixtures also offer precise positioning for applications requiring automated loading and unloading and handshake with robotic devices.
Heat is undeniably vital for efficient aqueous cleaning, yet the temperature of cleaned parts upon exit can pose challenges for subsequent processes or handling. Post-cleaning activities, like leak testing and gauging, rely on parts cooling to ambient temperature, which can introduce geometric variations. In such cases, integrating a cooling tunnel may be necessary to attain the desired part temperature range if staging isn’t feasible.