I ordered a 20 gal parts washer from Cummins Tools (almost exactly like the HF version) for a friend for Xmas. It finally arrived.
This parts washer is very similar in size and function to the Safety-Kleen Model 30 which is what I used in my auto repair shop years ago.
Does anyone use a parts washer in their shop? What solvent do you use? Do you use a service?
I was thinking of using straight kerosene because it is cheaper than SK "Premium Gold Solvent".
Incidentally... if anyone is thinking of buying one of these cheap HF or Cummins or Grizzly parts washers... don't unless you feel like replacing the entire pump mechanism with something that will hold up. The one I got for my friend was broken in shipping. Waiting for replacement now.
We've used solvent, citrus cleaners and aqueous cleaners. Disliked most of them. Now we use Simple Green Crystal in our parts washers. This is a clear solution, not the green stuff D. hates so much. Works great without being heated, kind to our skin, inexpensive, doesn't stain aluminum, doesn't corrode a metal parts washer. We add a generic rust preventative because it does not leave any film of it's own, and clean parts will rust without it. Alternately you could just spray them afterward with WD or something better.
Thanks Mudflap, I will take that under consideration. Do you mix the SGC with water or do you use it straight?
I also dislike the smell of regular Simple Green... kinda makes me choke. It works really well though.
We had a sevice here called Safety Klean, this out fit would have you sign a bad agreement that you were forever responceable for the solvent, even though they recycled it.
Their sales staff would barge into shops and inspect your tank. They would say that they would turn you in to the EPA if if you did not use their service.
Stoddard solvent is a big EPA issue here. One machine shop was fined a half million for dumping it on the ground.
I went to a heated tank using water based to avoid the problem.
The stores that sold safty solvent here dont have it anymore. I have heard that some are using mineral spirts instead. I dont know the flash point of mineral spirts so I cant recomend it.
Donie, EPA will fine the daylights out of you for dumping any cleaner on the ground. That includes "spent" water cleaning solutions.
I use Agitene 151. Works better than the water based stuff I tried. (But the water based stuff was from HF)
Tractor supply also sells a solvent with a flash point above 151 degrees F. I haven't used it, but it was a heck of a lot cheaper than the Agitene.
Void - It does not smell. Well, it sorta smells like dishwater. I don't like regular SG either, this stuff is nice. We buy it from MSC in 5 gallon jugs and mix it with water. It DOES work better heated, btw, but it works OK cold too.
If you want a really nice regular solvent, Kleer Flo F99 is my favorite. Blue color, mild smell, not bad on your hands. I got it special order from a parts house that handles Kleer Flo.
PS - What does -DU-...etc... mean? [img]tongue.gif[/img]
I use kerosine. Compared to all of the "special" cleaners it is the least expensive, cleans relatively well, lasts a long time, doesn't rust steel parts, and is relatively non toxic. Biggest problem is I don't like the smell and what to do with it when it is old and really dirty. Bill
I no longer have high volume. I lay out newspaper and lay part to be cleaned on news paper. I then use hand spray bottle full of mineral spirits and various scribes, brushes and other pokey things to scrape, gouge, brush till I am satisied. I then roll up the paper and discard in trash. I use rubber gloves. I have abused my skin to a point that I am uncertain as to whether or not it will become an issue in the future. It matters not to me if something is friendly to the skin. My skin no longer touches any of it. John
Buy low odor lantern Kero. I noticed a roughly 2.5 gallon container of this at Wally World the other day for $14.95, higher than pump kero but much cleaner and far less stinky.
Biggest problem is I don't like the smell and what to do with it when it is old and really dirty
As for disposal, find someone with a waste oil heater, they will probably love you for giving them 20 gallons of kero. Even dirty kero is cleaner than old motor oil! Truck shops and transmission shops are good places to find a waste oil burner in use.
I use "Varsol" (mineral spirits?) in mine since my garage is unheated and routinely drops below freezing in the winter, so I can't use a water based solution. Like MitsTech suggests, I have a garage in town with a waste oil heater, and when I change the Varsol every 3-4 years I just pour the waste into the same oil drum that my used motor oil goes into.
What about Greased Lightning? I use this to get nasty grease and grime off of stuff and I know they sell it in 5 gallon buckets as well. Just a thought.
Thanks for all the suggestions.
My preference would be for kerosene. Cheap and the least environmentally nasty of all the petroleum based solvents. I don't mind the smell so much as the washer will be installed in a drafty and unheated barn.
Since this parts washer was a gift to a friend... he will have to decide which type of solvent will work best for him. He will mainly be cleaning automotive parts and yard equipment parts with it.
If he decides to go with a water soluble solvent (like the Simple Green Crystal) he may have to add some stuff or make the concentration high enough so it doesn't freeze. His barn is located in Northern New Jersey (Sussex County). We are having a VERY mild winter here so far... 70*F in Newark right now, in January!! It can get get below freezing for weeks at a time.
As far as disposal goes... in a sense petroleum based solvents seem to easier to dispose of. As others have mentioned they can be used in waste oil heaters or just dumped at the local oil recycling facility. Water based solvents are just as "dirty" after use and it won't "burn"... but where can you dump it?