You have probably seen a parts washer in action and not even realized it. The world is full of machines, from car engines to washing machines and others with many small parts. Many of these machines require cleaning using a specialized device like a parts washer. So, what is a parts washer?
What Is a Parts Washer?
A parts washer is a mechanical device used to clean small parts of a machine. The device uses a combination of water, detergent, and air to remove dirt, oil, and other contaminants from the small parts. It has a basin that holds the solvent, a pump that circulates the solvent, and a spray nozzle that directs the solvent onto the parts.
Parts washers are used in many industries, including automotive, aerospace, and manufacturing. In fact, almost any industry that uses machines with small parts can benefit from using a parts washer to keep their parts clean.
The primary use of the parts washer is to clean small parts before packaging, assembly, or coating. This ensures that the final product is free of dirt, oil, and other contaminants that could cause problems down the line. You can also clean parts after packaging, assembly, or coating to remove any residual contaminants that are left behind.
Types of Parts Washers
Parts washers are divided into solvent and aqueous parts and further divided into immersion or spray-type washers. Solvent parts washers use a solvent, such as a degreaser or cleaning fluid, to clean the parts. Aqueous parts washers use water and a detergent to clean dirty parts and are the most common type of parts washer.
The two main types of solvent parts washers are immersion and spray. Immersion solvent parts washers submerge the parts in the solvent, while spray solvent parts washers use a spray nozzle to apply the solvent to the parts.
Aqueous parts washers also come in two main types: immersion and spray. Immersion aqueous parts washers submerge the parts in the water and detergent cleaning solution, while spray aqueous parts washers use a spray nozzle to apply the water and detergent to the parts.
The following are different types of parts washers:
Spray Cabinet Parts Washer
This type of parts washer uses a high pressure, low-volume pump to deliver cleaning fluid through a nozzle and onto the part. The cleaning fluid is then collected in a sump and filtered before recirculation to the nozzle.
Batch Immersion Parts Washer
This type of parts washer submerges the parts in a cleaning solution. An agitation system keeps the parts moving in the solution to loosen and remove contaminants. The parts are then rinsed with clean water and dried.
Ultrasonic Parts Washer
An ultrasonic parts washer uses sound waves to create cavitation in the cleaning solution. This cavitation creates tiny bubbles that implode and generate a scrubbing action that removes contaminants from the part’s surface. The parts are then rinsed with clean water and dried.
Batch Parts Washers
Batch parts washers are ideal for cleaning small batches of parts at a time. These units are typically used in small businesses or repair shops. Batch parts washers typically have a capacity of fewer than 30 gallons and are easy to operate.
Pull-Out Sprayers Parts Washer
This type of parts washer uses a spray nozzle to apply the cleaning fluid to the part. The fluid is then collected in a basin and recirculated to the nozzle that sprays it onto the part. It is mainly used to clean small parts that are difficult to reach like blind holes and recesses.
Rotary Drum Parts Washer
Rotary parts washers use a rotating drum to clean the parts. The drum is filled with a cleaning solvent, and the parts are rotated through the solvent and then rinsed with clean water. Rotary parts washers are typically used to clean large parts due to their cleaning power and large size.
Conveyor Parts Washer
This type of parts washer uses a conveyor belt to move the parts through the cleaning solution. The parts are then rinsed with clean water and dried. Conveyor parts washers are ideal for cleaning large quantities of parts at a time that can be processed quickly.
When using conveyor parts washers, it is important to consider the size and shape of the parts you are cleaning, the solvent and detergent you are using, and the cleaning process you want to use.
Explosion Proof Parts Washers
Explosion-proof parts washers are designed to clean parts in an environment where there is a potential for an explosive atmosphere. These units have features that prevent the ignition of any flammable vapors that may be present.
Though expensive, they are a necessary piece of equipment for many industrial applications due to the dangers of an explosive atmosphere that can occur.
Parts Washer Accessories
- The heater: the heater is a common accessory for parts washers. It is used to heat the cleaning solvent to a temperature that will loosen and remove contaminants from the part.
- The agitator: Used to keep the parts moving in the cleaning solution.
- The filter: the filter is used to clean the cleaning solution before it is recirculated back to the nozzle.
- The degreaser: used to remove grease and oils from the parts.
- The rust inhibitor: the rust inhibitor is used to prevent the formation of rust on the parts.
- The generators: Generators can be used to provide power to parts washers.
- The nozzle: for spraying the parts with cleaning fluid.
- The sump: where you collect the dirty cleaning fluids
Frequently Asked Questions
What Is the Best Parts Washer Fluid?
Bluster is the best parts washer fluid designed to remove oil, grease, and grime quickly and easily. It has industrial strength to clean the toughest jobs and is safe on all metals.
How Often Should I Use a Parts Washer?
You should use a parts washer as often as needed to clean your tools and equipment. Depending on the frequency of use, you may need to clean your parts washer more often.
A parts washer is an excellent addition to any shop or garage as they provide a quick and easy way to clean small parts and components. When selecting a parts washer, you consider the size and shape of the parts, the solvent and detergent you are using, and the safety features of the unit.