Time is Money: Keep your Nozzle Clean



February 10, 2015


Toothpicks and pine straw needles can help keep spray nozzles clean. Photo: ©istock.com/DonNichols

You’re on the job when, suddenly, you notice the pesticide isn’t coming out of the compressed air sprayer smoothly, evenly or at all. Perhaps the chemical stream is going in two or more directions. Something has slipped past the filter and is blocking all or part of the nozzle opening. You don’t have the luxury of time or tools to repair the sprayer, nor a spare part to simply replace the offending part. I encourage technicians to have two items in their service boxes or trucks for just such an emergency:

Wooden toothpicks are ideal for dislodging a small particle from a spray-nozzle opening.

Pine straw needles can be as effective as toothpicks, and in some cases, more effective. If the particle clogging the nozzle is very small or fine, a pine straw needle will push it out quickly without damaging the soft brass.

Remember, the brass used in the compressed air sprayer fittings is very soft, and the orifice can accidentally be enlarged if cleaned with a brush or pocketknife. They’re not cheap to replace, either.

You can reach Meek, international technical and training director for Orkin, at fmeek@rollins.com.


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