The cleaning of parts is a comprehensive process, which typically includes three key steps: washing, rinsing, and drying. Many people don't realize that the options available for each of these steps are as diverse as the parts involved. It is important to select the right technologies suited to the part for each phase of the parts cleaning process.
It may be difficult to discern the individual steps in some applications due to overlap, however the following provides a breakdown of each step:
The dissolution or displacement of contamination from parts happens during the washing phase. In most cases this is accomplished through the use of water mixed with a specialized chemical formula or a solvent. In some applications, washing may by a multi-step process, depending on the contaminants involved. In the case of heavy contaminant load, a pre-clean step and a second cleaning cycle may be required to complete the washing process. No matter what methods are used, at the end of the washing step, all contaminants should be completely removed from the parts and separated from the parts to the greatest extent possible.
The purpose of the rising step is to remove residual cleaning fluid. Since all of the original contaminant on the part should be removed during the washing phase, further contaminant removal should not be expected during the rinsing phase. Rinsing typically involves the use of plain water or some type of pure solvent. If the level of cleanliness required is extremely high, the level of purity in the rinse must be equally high. Since contaminants can accumulate in rinse formulas, it may be necessary to include a rinse purity preservation measure in the cleaning process.
Unless a wet part is acceptable, some method of part drying will be necessary to complete the parts cleaning process. Drying is often the most time consuming step in the parts cleaning process. The two primary methods of parts drying are evaporation and blow-off. Drying ovens employ the use of heat to evaporate water, while force air blowers can be used to remove liquid from parts. Some parts drying technologies incorporate a combination of these methods. It is important to consider parts requirements and characteristics when selecting a drying system. For example, parts requiring a spotless surface will benefit from one approach to drying, while parts with crevices may require another.
If you need assistance in designing a comprehensive parts cleaning system to meet your specific needs, talk to the experts at CTG Clean. We are ready to discuss your project!