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Sprayer Depot Blog

3 Reasons Why a Strainer Is an Important Part of Your Sprayer

Posted by Sprayer Depot on Wed, Dec 16, 2015

Recently, our Customer Service Technicians have fielded a few calls regarding clogged strainers. While it may seem like a basic sprayer maintenance issue, it's often overlooked by even large companies with fleets of trucks and multiple sprayer units. 

So, we've updated this helpful post to emphasize the importance of good spray equipment maintenance.

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Clogging can cause a number of expensive problems on your sprayer. The fix to this common issue is Clogged_Strainer-filter.jpgsimple and economical: properly install and service your strainer. The strainer in your sprayer is one of the easiest parts to maintain, however it's probably the most overlooked one. A clean and properly sealed strainer will allow proper flow to the pump and contribute to a longer pump life. For most applications, a standard Buna Gasket is adequate. However, if you find that you are replacing the Buna Gasket frequently, a Viton Gasket is a more durable option. 

Why is such a small part on your unit so important? There are three main reasons:

 

  1. Maintains consistent fluid circulation throughout the pump

  2. Keeps nozzles from clogging 

  3. Helps achieve optimal sprayer operation

Prevent Clogs
 
Some of the main reasons why a strainer gets clogged include: (1) incorrect mesh size; (2) lack of maintenance; and (3) insufficient consideration for the liquid that getting sprayed (fertilizers require a larger mesh strainer than water based chemicals). When shopping for strainers, pay close attention to the mesh size. It generally ranges from 10-200 and the higher the number the tighter the mesh. On most agricultural and pest control sprayers the recommended mesh size is 16-30. We manufacture all of our Kings Sprayers with a 20 size mesh screen. However, depending on your application and the type of liquid being sprayed you may need a different size. If you need a recommendation just let one of our Customer Service Technicians know and they will fit your sprayer with the appropriate mesh. 
 
Cleaning the strainer should be done after every use. We get it, after a hard day's work you are ready to put the sprayer away and head home. But taking 5 minutes to flush it out will pay off in the future. We've seen it before, many customers have brought their sprayers to our service department for a repairafter they've spent hundreds of dollars replacing every other part in an attempt to figure out why there's a loss of pressure. The first thing we typically check is the strainer, and we often find it clogged like the one pictured above. 
 
Clean Your Strainer
 
No need to remove the strainer from the line in order to clean it. Simply unscrew the bowl from the cap and take out the screen. Next, flush any debris and sediment from the screen. Finish up by reassembling the strainer by first fitting the screen to the flange in the bowl. Hand tightening the bowl provides a sufficient seal.
 
Popular Strainers

Strainers come in all types of materials, from nylon to poly, and even aluminum. Their shapes also vary, with "T" strainers being the most popular styles and "Y" strainers coming in a close second. Some of our best sellers include:

3350 0056 actual resized 600Clear T strainerBanjoYStrainer actual resized 600

Get more tips on how to make your equipment last longer!

Click HERE to Download

Topics: Hypro, Maintenance, strainer, sprayer strainer, strainer for spray equipment, hypro line strainer, clear blow t strainer, spray tips, filter, screen, sprayer tips and tricks, Banjo, Spray maintenance, poly, mesh, nylon strainer

Sprayer Winterization Q&As

Posted by Sprayer Depot on Wed, Dec 09, 2015

Winterizing your sprayer is not an option, it's a requirement. Before winter starts or after the end ofSprayer_Winterization_qa.png spraying season, make sure you winterize your sprayer before you put it away. We know we constantly talk about seasonal maintenance but we just can't stress it enough, performing regular maintenance will ensure a long life for your sprayer.

In this short Q&A, we answer the most common sprayer winterization questions we receive from customers.   

1. Should I perform any type of maintenance before winter starts?

You definitely should! Winterizing your spray equipment is an important step to ensure the performance of your sprayer.

2. When should I winterize my spray equipment?

You want to winterize your sprayer before temperatures drop below freezing. In areas like Florida, where the temperatures don’t drop too much, you should winterize your sprayer before you store it at the end of season.

3. What materials do I need to winterize my sprayer?

You will need clean rags, a bristle brush, clean water, pump oil (see manufacturer’s recommendations), antifreeze, an all weather tarp and a tire pressure gauge (if your sprayer has wheels).

4. As long as I wear gloves while cleaning the sprayer I’ll be fine, right?

Wrong. Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) is very important when handling any type of pesticide, herbicide or other chemicals. Make sure to wear a long sleeve shirt, pants, eye wear, respirator or mask, gloves and boots.

5. Which steps should I follow to properly winterize every part of my spray equipment?

Follow these 5 easy steps:

  • Flush the system with clean water
  • Drain the tank and open all valves; Use compressed air to blow out any liquid from solution lines
  • Run the pump just long enough to ensure that the system is drained of water
  • Run antifreeze through the system long enough to reach any hoses and booms; We recommend diluting the antifreeze 50/50 with either water or windshield washer fluid 
  • Cover the sprayer with the tarp so that dirt, insects, etc. cannot enter the equipment

6. Should removable parts remain attached to the unit?

No. Store any removable parts like spray guns, nozzles and strainers in a clean, dry place.

7. What about sprayers with a boom?

Just make sure to also include the following steps as part of your maintenance for the spray boom:

  • Remove the boom feed hoses from the boom section valves
  • Use compressed air to flush each boom 
  • Remove the nozzle tube end plugs and continue to blow out any water from the boom
  • Remove and clean out any boom section filters
  • Remove metal screens or fittings and store the parts in vegetable oil over the winter to prevent corrosion
  • Ensure that your boom is free of water, lubricate any O-rings and re-install non-metal components

Looking for more information? Download our comprehensive sprayer winterizing guide for free!

Download the Guide to Winterize Your Sprayer

Topics: Kings Sprayer, Spray Equipment Maintenance, Winterizing Spray Equipment, Maintenance, spray equipment, Boom Sprayer, winterize sprayer, sprayer, winterize your spray equipment, Pump, FAQ, Spray maintenance, seasonal maintenance, winter, Q&A

7 Must Haves For Your Sprayer Emergency Kit

Posted by Sprayer Depot on Wed, Nov 11, 2015

Many of our customers are getting ready to store their sprayer. To make this task as easy as possible, we've been Emergency_Repair_Kitsharing our end-of-season tips and tricks in our previous posts. Now is also the perfect time to put together a sprayer emergency kit if you haven't already.

An emergency kit will cut your downtime and save you time and money by keeping  a few essential parts on hand so you can quickly repair your spray equipment. When breakdowns happen no one is happy, so avoid downtime by stocking up on replacement parts.

The parts in your emergency kit will vary depending on the type of spray equipment you use, but we've compiled a list of the most commonly needed parts for repairing and maintaining some of our most popular Kings Sprayers.

Spray Tips and Nozzles: Replace spray tips and nozzles immediately if you notice a change in flow rate or a change in pattern distribution. Damaged spray tips and nozzles are sometimes overlooked but can cost you money and precious time if not replaced in a timely manner.

Strainers: A clogged strainer is one of the most common repairs our Service Repair Technicians see on a daily basis. You can prolong your strainer's life by cleaning it often, however, it's a good idea to keep a replacement strainer, gasket and seal. 

Spray Guns: We recommend not only keeping a spray gun repair kit but also a spare spray gun that you can use, just in case. One of the most common spray guns is the JD9-C pictured below, we sell a repair kit to replace the seals if the gun starts to leak and we have a short instructional video that will make the repair a breeze. 

Spray Hose: Although hoses are pretty tough they can bend and crack which affects the performance of your sprayer so we recommend having spare suction, bypass and discharge hoses on hand in case you need a quick replacement.

Hose Fittings: Besides storing replacement spare hoses, reusable hose fittings should also be on your list. Check out our video on this easy repair!

Diaphragm: Having a diaphragm repair kit in your emergency kit is definitely a must. These handy and inexpensive kits can make all the difference when it comes to staying up and running, or increasing your downtime. We have a couple of instructional videos that will guide you on the steps necessary to replace the diaphragm in your pump.

Pumps: Just like the diaphragm, many parts in your pump can be easily replaced, but some can't and sometimes the pump will fail and the only solution is a replacement. We recommend keeping a spare pump as part of your emergency kit.

A sprayer emergency kit will also help you save money by avoiding a trip to the service and repair shop, but in case you need it, you can count on us to offer you the best repair service. Don't hesitate to give us a call if you need help with a repair, or if you want to schedule a repair and service appointment at our Orlando, FL retail location. Just call 800-228-0905.

What do you keep in your sprayer emergency kit? Leave a note in the comments below. We'd love to hear from you.

Emergency_repair

Topics: Reusable Hose Fittings, Maintenance, Hoses, Spray Guns, Sprayer Depot, Sprayer Parts, Pump Repair, spray tips, Spray Nozzles, Diaphragm Repair, Boomless Nozzle, Pump, gearbox, Spray maintenance, repair kit, pumps, emergency

Taking Care of Your Sprayer's Honda Engine

Posted by Sprayer Depot on Mon, Oct 19, 2015

On our last blog, we shared a comprehensive Sprayer Maintenance Seasonal Checklist to help you keep track of GX120-actualyour spray equipment's maintenance requirements. We often focus on the tank, strainer and pump more than anything else when it comes to maintenance, however, the engine also needs some TLC.

Here at Sprayer Depot we get plenty of questions regarding equipment care, and a common question is "How often should I change the engine oil?" As always, we recommend to follow manufacturer recommendations. To help you stay on top of your equipment's maintenance, we've written down a quick how-to on changing the oil on some of our most popular commercial engines, the Honda Engine Models GX120 and GX160.

Honda recommends changing the oil after 100 hours or every 6 months, whichever comes first. Honda also recommends 4-stroke oil or an equivalent high-detergent, premium quality motor oil certified to meet or exceed U.S. automobile manufacturer's requirements for Service Classification SG.SF/CC.CD. 

Before performing any type of maintenance make sure the engine has been shut off and drain the oil while the engine is still warm to assure rapid and complete draining. 

Now that we have that covered, let’s talk about the four steps to changing the oil in your Honda Engine GX120 - GX160

Step 1. Remove the oil filler cap and drain plug to drain the oil.

Step 2. Install the drain plug and tighten it securely.

Step 3. Refill with the recommended SAE 10W-30* and check oil level.

Step 4. Install the oil filler cap.

A few things to note:

  • Do not use non-detergent oils or vegetable oils as they are not recommended
  • Be sure to check the engine on a level surface with the engine off
  • Make sure to thoroughly wash your hands with soap and water after handling motor oil
 Honda_engine_GX120-160

What other "How Tos" would you like to see featured on our blog? We appreciate your feedback so let us know in the comments box below!

*SAE 10W-30 is recommended for general, all-temperature use. Other viscosities may be used depending on outside temperature. Please consult manual

Topics: Spray Equipment Maintenance, Maintenance, Sprayer Depot, winterize sprayer, sprayer, oil change, Spray maintenance, honda engine, fall tips, GX160, seasonal maintenance, GX120

Sprayer Depot Recognizes National Water Quality Month

Posted by Sprayer Depot on Fri, Aug 14, 2015

As one of the leaders in the spray equipment industry, we make an effort to inform customers of initiatives that are not only eco-friendly, but will also help your business save time and money. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has designated August as the National Water Quality Month and in an effort to create awareness on the importance of preserving water quality, we have 3 great tips you can implement as part of your spraying routine:

Water-Save-Earth
  • Wait for dry weather. It’s good business practice to check the forecast before you spray pesticides, herbicides or other chemicals. Spraying before a rainy or windy day will not only result in a less effective application but also in wasted chemicals and a higher chance of chemical run-off that affects the soil and bodies of water nearby.

  • Harvest rainwater. Using rainwater lowers your water consumption and helps recycle a free resource. Poly tanks make great containers to collect and store rainwater to be used for spraying. And we stock them in many shapes and sizes.

  • Check your sprayer. Perform routine maintenance on your sprayer and check for leaks or malfunctioning parts that may increase the potential for accidental spills.

Check out our past blog post 3 Tips to Eco-Friendly Spraying for more tips on spraying smarter. Do you have advice on conserving water and maintaining water quality? We would love to hear how your dedicated conservation efforts are paying off, so share your advice below.

 

Topics: Spray Equipment Maintenance, Sprayer Depot, sprayer, water conservation tips, spray smarter, poly tanks, eco-friendly, sustainability, Spray maintenance, water consumption, quality water

July is Smart Irrigation Month

Posted by Sprayer Depot on Fri, Jul 24, 2015

SIM-Logo-Color

Let’s be honest, how many of us really implement a water conservation strategy into our spraying program? Chances are, not that many. Fresh water is a precious commodity we are lucky to enjoy. Unfortunately, recent numbers show a severe increase in drought levels around the U.S.

Research from the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) also shows that “45% of freshwater use is by industry, 42% by agriculture and 13% for domestic purposes.” Without getting too deep into the topic, we want to help spread the word that July is Smart Irrigation Month. This is an initiative launched in 2005 by the Irrigation Association (IA) to highlight the importance of water-use efficiency.

We think this is a great time to also remind you that small changes in your spraying habits can help conserve water and will help improve some of that bad reputation our industry sometimes gets. 

3 easy suggestions to help you reduce water consumption:

  • Make sure you are using the appropriate nozzle size for the type of application. This can decrease your water consumption by making sure that the drop size is appropriate and you are not overmisting, overspraying or overwetting. You also want to check that the nozzles are positioned correctly to ensure good coverage.
  • Check the hose, switch and tank of your sprayer for leaks. Believe or not, leaks are not always obvious and can go undetected for a while. Even if you haven’t noticed a performance change that would indicate a leak, it’s worth making sure that everything is working properly.
  • Establish a plan that helps you keep track of your spray equipment’s maintenance and remember to perform timely tune-ups to all sprayer parts. We recently featured a Sprayer Maintenance FAQs blog post that can help you get started with servicing your sprayer.

Head to the Irrigation Association's official website for the latest tools and resources to learn more about efficient water use. 

Join the initiative and tell us how you conserve water and reduce waste. If you have some helpful tips, share them in the comments below!

  

Topics: Spray Equipment Maintenance, sprayer, Spray Hose, smart irrigation, water conservation tips, Smart Irrigation Month, spray smarter, sustainability, Spray maintenance, nozzles

Sprayer Maintenance FAQs

Posted by Sprayer Depot on Mon, Jul 20, 2015

PumppicsOur savvy Customer Service Technicians handle many calls throughout the day, many of which are inquiries from customers regarding how to properly maintain their sprayers in top-notch condition. For this reason, we have put together the most Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) to help you take care of your equipment:

Q: When should I replace my spray tips? 
A: If you notice a change in flow rate or a change in pattern distribution then this might indicate that your spray tips need to be replaced. You should replace your spray tips immediately if they are worn out or damaged.

Q: How often should I flush my pump?
A: After every use, especially if you are using herbicide or other harsh chemicals.  Flush the pump using clean water.

Q: How do I know when my strainer needs to be cleaned?
A: If you notice a loss of pressure or a drop in flow rate then you may have a clogged strainer that needs to be cleaned. However, you should never wait until that happens, so it is advisable to clean it once a week depending on how often you spray. Check out our 3 Reasons Why You Should Check Your Sprayer.

Q: How often should I perform an oil change? 
A: Please follow your specific pump's manufacturer recommendations.

Q: When should I calibrate my sprayer?
A: You should calibrate your sprayer at least once every season. For more information on calibrating your sprayer please check our Step-By-Step Sprayer Calibration Guide to get you started.

Q: I am using a diaphragm pump, when should I replace the diaphragm?
A: Every 500 hours or every 3 months, whichever comes first.

Q: Should I also check my pump's valve?
A: Definitely! If you are replacing the diaphragm it is the perfect opportunity to also check the valve and replace it if necessary.

There are also a few other things you should make a habit of checking as part of your sprayer maintenance:

Check

  • Hoses for any cuts, damage or bends
  • Nozzles to make sure they are clean
  • Tank for any damage or rupture
  • Pressure switch for any leakage 
  • Boom spacing
As always, we are here to help you so don't hesitate to contact us if you have any questions!

Topics: Maintenance, spray equipment, strainer, spray tips, Sprayer Calibration, Pump, sprayer tips and tricks, FAQ, Spray maintenance

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