How to Clean A Lawn Chemical Sprayers Correctly & Safely

QUESTION:

Hi Callum,

Quick question. Maybe I should be able to work this out for myself from other places on your site. BTW – I love this site!

But can you give us a quick answer on how to clean a lawn sprayer from chemicals correctly and safely?

I’ve got a Field King pro pump 4 gallon

Thanks,

Matt.

ANSWER: 

Matt, hi

Most people are not taking care of their lawn sprayer at all.

In fact, I’m often emailed that exact question How do I clean my sprayer between uses now?

So since I’ve been getting so many requests I decided to do this post and hopefully help you out.

How To Clean A Lawn Sprayer

This is a really important topic because if you’re spraying things like weed killer and then fertilizer, you don’t want to mix those things together.

So keeping it clean is very important.

And in this article, I’m going to show you how I do it to make sure that I don’t have problems and that my sprayer lasts for as long as it can.

Mistake #1:

The #1 mistake most people make with sprayers as they leave stuff in them overnight.

Sprayers are meant to be used as soon as the job’s done you to empty it out clean it and put it away properly if you want it to last.

Do not store anything in it for overnight or long periods of time.

Earlier today I was spraying some tenacity around killing some crabgrass

I was using it with the blue coloring and it’s got a blue tinge to the tank.

YT25E Battery Sprayer

So now I’m ready to begin my process.

The first thing I do is really easy.

I just spray the outside of the sprayer down now.

The reason I do this is because there’s always a little bit residue on the outside of the tank or the wand.

So I just give it a quick rinse to get everything off the outside.

Then you want to fill the tank halfway with water now.

You should note that this tank was empty.

I used all the tenacity on my lawn and I didn’t have anything left.

You should always use all the product or dispose of it in proper method.

I typically aim to have nothing left so that when I do this part, I’m just filling at the halfway mark with water.

This is what’s called the first rinse and this is critical when you’re going to clean your sprayer out.

So we’ll just shake this up and then we’re going to pour this out.

Now I’m going to use a commercially available tank cleaner.

The good news is this stuff is really cheap.

You only need a little bit of it to clean this tank and the bottle lasts a long time.

Just pour some in and then top it up with water.

You hit just about the top of the tank.

Now if you’ve used something that’s particularly sticky even some organic products have a lot of oil in them.

You might want to let this soapy solution sit for several hours or even overnight.

In most cases things like tenacity and other fertilizers, you’ll only need to fill up and then just have the soapy solution agitated and that’s going to be more than enough to clean the tank properly.

So just shake the tank up a bit to circulate the soap around inside of the tank.

Then you want to move on to cleaning the wand and that’s very easy.

If you’ve got a battery-powered unit just turn it on or if you’ve got a pump sprayer just give it a few pumps and start to squirt the solution through.

If you’re using a dye you’ll see it come through and it will go clear once all the dye is out of the hose and nozzle.

Once it goes clear you’ll know that the soap gets through the lines and those will be clean as well.

And now just need to dump out that soapy solution and fill up the container one last time with clean water.

This is the third and final rinse.

Now for years it’s always been accepted that you want to do a triple rinse method when you’re cleaning sprayers, except the Boost that we’re going to give it is by using that soap in the middle.

You’re certain that you’re getting everything out and it really does a good job.

So when you’re done filling it up you just going to cap it up give it one final shape and you should run that clean water through the lines as well and then just pump it out.

Now you’re ready to finally put your sprayer away.

So if this seems like a ton of work it really isn’t as it only takes about two to three minutes.

Now when putting your sprayer away, you’ll know it’s going to be ready to work the next time you need it.

So you’re going to spend good money on equipment there’s no reason to waste it.

So, this is how I take care my sprayer every time.

I really have had no problems over the years, especially when I do a lot of work, it’s nice to have that sprayer always be reliable.

So I hope this has helped you out Matt and given you a good way to help you clean yours out too.

 

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