Proper Sprayer Maintenance Requires Keeping the Right Sprayer Parts in Inventory
"How many spare parts should I keep on hand?" This question seems to come up often. While some customers like to stay prepared by keeping extra pumps, engines and other major sprayer components on hand, most keep a few key sprayer parts on the their shelves in order to do quick repairs in the field. Here are the top 3 "must-have” parts that we recommend to keep on hand:
- Regulate flow
- Atomize the mixture into droplets
- Disperse the spray in a desirable pattern
An agitator in the tank is needed to mix the spray material uniformly and keep chemicals in suspension. If this breaks, you will most definitely want to replace it ASAP, so make sure to have a replacement part ready to ensure an effective application.
As we've previously said, the strainer is a very important part of your sprayer. Clogging can damage your entire unit if not replaced in a timely manner. You need to consider your spray solution when choosing the correct strainer for your sprayer.
Strainer numbers (e.g. 20-mesh, 50-mesh, or 100-mesh) indicate the number of openings per inch. Strainers with high numbers have smaller openings than strainers with low numbers. A good tip to remember is: The higher the number the tighter the mesh.
Coarse basket strainers (also commonly referred to as basket filters) set in the tank-filler opening prevent debris from entering the tank as it is being filled. A 16- or 20-mesh tank basket filter will also restrain lumps of wettable powder until they are broken up, helping to give uniform mixing in the tank.
The line strainer is the most critical strainer of the sprayer. It usually has a screen size of 16 to 80 mesh, and it can be positioned between the tank and the pump, between the pump and the pressure regulator, or close to the boom, depending upon the type of pump you are using.
Roller and other positive displacement pumps should have a line strainer (40- or 50-mesh) located ahead of the pump to remove material that would damage the pump. In contrast, the inlet of a centrifugal pump must not be restricted. A line strainer (usually 50-mesh) should be located on the pressure side of the pump to protect the spray and agitation nozzles. Be sure to clean this screen regularly.
Spray season will soon be in full swing, so don't get caught unprepared! Shop for your replacement parts and keep your spray equipment running smoothly.