Are You Using the Proper Tank Cleaning Device for Your Application?

If you search for tank and equipment cleaning solutions, you’ll likely come across a number of different tank cleaning nozzles, each suited for a particular industry and application. With so many possible options, how do you know if you are using the proper tank cleaning device for your application? Here’s a quick guide to help you understand cleaning device differences. 

Cleaning Efficiency Class 1: Static Spray Balls 

In the lowest efficiency class, static spray balls are primarily used to clean relatively small to medium size tanks, typically in food or beverage industries. This cleaning device is designed to operate at a flow rate of 4.0 to 89 gpm at 20 psi, which is a standard guideline for the food and beverage industry. Compared to rotating nozzles, however, static spray balls require two to three times more liquid to generate an adequate flow, yet they do not deliver the same cleaning power. 

Nevertheless, there are several benefits of static spray balls that make them invaluable for certain industries. These benefits include being self-draining, resistant to higher temperatures, and useful in hygienically sensitive environments. In addition, static spray balls have an advantage over rotating nozzles in particular. If, for whatever reason, a rotating nozzle stops turning, this may result in some tank sections being missed. With static spray balls, this is not a concern.  

Cleaning Efficiency Class 2 & 3: Free Spinning 

The next two cleaning efficiency classes utilize free spinning nozzles. These devices use specially positioned nozzles to rapidly dispense cleaning fluid. The repeated impact effectively removes soil and rinses the tank surface at low pressures. Class 2 free spinning nozzles are best for light soiling in small to medium-sized tanks, especially in the food and beverage industry. They have also proven to be useful in the chemical and pharmaceutical industry. 

Like Class 2 nozzles, the Class 3 nozzles are suitable for use in food, beverage, chemical, and pharmaceutical industries. With flow rates from 3 to 303 gpm at 30 psi and special nozzle geometry, nozzles in Class 3 are more suited for medium soiling in small to large-sized tanks. These free-spinning nozzles are made from high-grade materials that allow for a variety of cleaning agents to be used.  

Cleaning Efficiency Class 4: Controlled Rotation

Class 4 controlled rotation cleaning nozzles are driven by fluid to achieve higher impact. These cleaning devices utilize a turbine wheel and internal gear that controls the rotation. This design allows speed to remain within an optimal range at higher pressure, which is especially important for cleaning large tanks. The flat fan spray nozzle design also makes it possible to remove heavy soiling even at temperatures up to 284°F / 140°C. Rotating cleaning nozzles in Class 4 are available in a variety of sizes and flow rates, making them a suitable option for a number of demanding applications.  

Cleaning Efficiency Class 5: Gear Controlled 

Gear controlled nozzles round out the list by providing the most powerful spray impact. With gear controlled nozzles, turbine wheels and an internal gear drive the cleaning fluid to rotate the spray head on two axes. Class 5 cleaning devices also include solid jet nozzles mounted on the spray head that sweep the surface of the tank at a pre-programmed pattern during the spray cycle.  

Generating the highest impact, gear controlled cleaning devices are ideal for the heaviest soiling and largest tanks. These Class 5 cleaning nozzles are specifically designed for the toughest cleaning tasks and have proven highly effective in food, beverage, chemical, petrochemical, and paper industries. With exceptional capacity for larger jobs, gear controlled nozzles a great option for medium and very large tanks. 

Finding the Proper Tank Cleaning Device  

Lechler is dedicated to creating and supplying economical tank cleaning nozzles that stand the test of time. From static spray balls to gear controlled nozzles, we offer tank and equipment cleaning solutions for a variety of industries and applications. Learn more about the Lechler tank cleaning nozzles available for your industry or contact us today for more information!