Last Updated on April 4, 2022 by admin
Ultrasonic cleaners have been used for several decades, especially for industrial purposes. From surgical equipment to firearms, ultrasonic cleaners are used to clean intricate parts and surfaces. Ultrasonic cleaners are used in the medical sector, in the home, to clean guns, and more.
But just like any worthwhile invention, there are several myths around ultrasonic cleaners. These myths, so often, end up making people scared or wary about using ultrasonic cleaners. In this article, I’ll discuss some of the common myths regarding ultrasonic cleaners.
Table of Contents
Myth 1: Ultrasonic Cleaners Don’t Work
Some people say that ultrasonic cleaners don’t live up to the hype. Perhaps they used the device to clean a system and did not get the desired results. But this myth is untrue. Ultrasonic cleaners are the best cleaners for tough contaminants. Think of ultrasonic cleaning like a spring clean for any type of object.
It’s important to choose the appropriate solution for your needs. Ultrasonic cleaners are designed for different purposes. Some are made for industrial purposes while smaller machines are made for domestic needs. So, make sure you use the right ultrasonic machine for your cleaning.
Even with the right machine, you have to configure it properly. For example, the wrong temperature or frequency settings will hinder your cleaning process. Besides, if you don’t use the right solvent, you won’t get the cleaning effect you want.
Myth 2: Aluminium Can’t Be Used in an Ultrasonic Cleaner
Somehow, some people think that aluminum won’t survive in an ultrasonic cleaner. But nothing could be further from the truth. In fact, ultrasonic cleaners are perfect for all kinds of metals including aluminum, stainless steel, and magnesium. Even more complex options like brass and titanium also work well with ultrasonic machines. The key is to use the right solvent with each of these metals.
Myth 3: Ultrasonics Destroys Gadgets
Because ultrasonic cleaners use ultrasounds, usually 20 – 40 kHz, to agitate fluids, some fear that ultrasonics can destroy gadgets. However, ultrasonic cleaners, once configured properly, do not destroy the items they clean. Take solder joints on circuit boards, for instance. Ultrasonic cleaners do not shake off the parts thereby damaging PCB. Rather, they create microscopic cavitation bubbles which remove contaminants from the surface of an item. They can also go into cracks and crevices to remove dirt without dislodging the parts.
Myth 4: You Need to Run Several Cycles to Clean Effectively
This myth has some truth in it. Generally speaking, the longer you clean an item, the cleaner it becomes. Ultrasonic cleaning usually lasts between three to six minutes. However, the cleaning time can exceed 20 minutes, based on the kind of item that’s being cleaned. For example, the amount of time it will take to clean industrial parts would be different from the time it takes to clean a smaller object like jewelry.
However, once the item is cleaned, you don’t need to run any extra cleaning cycles. That’s why you should follow the manufacturer’s recommendations for cleaning different items. Once the equipment is cleaned, an extra cycle won’t make a difference.
Myth 5: Always Use Water
Ultrasonic cleaners work fine with water. However, when you are dealing with tough contaminants and complicated objects, you’ll have to use a much stronger solvent. These solvents optimize the cleaning action and enhance the cleaning effect.
Thankfully, there are several kinds of ultrasonic cleaning solutions available, including acidic solutions, alkaline solutions, and high caustic solutions. Each cleaning solution has its optimal working temperature, usually between 122 – 149°C.
Myth 6: Ultrasonic Cleaners Require Skilled Operators
The mere mention of “ultrasonic” gives the idea that it is a highly technical field. While it’s true that ultrasonics is a complex field, there’s nothing complicated about using an ultrasonic cleaner. In fact, for most cleaners, you’d just need to fill up the tank with the right solution, place the item to be cleaned and turn on the power. You may need to adjust the cleaner’s configurations.
These are things that anyone can do, once the person is trained on how to use the machine. You don’t need to hire a specialist to handle your ultrasonic cleaning needs.
Myth 7: You Can’t Do Ultrasonic Cleaning with Flammable Solvents
Perhaps, as soon as you hear flammable solvents, you are thinking about an explosion. But ultrasonic cleaning can be done perfectly with flammable solvents.
While water and water-based solutions are good for getting rid of some contaminants, they don’t always work for gadgets like surgical implants, medical instruments, printed circuit boards, and inkjet cartridges. In such cases, you’ll need flammable solvents like acetone, IPA, MEK, and toluene. These solvents while effective can result in explosions.
The way to avoid explosions is to use explosion-proof ultrasonic cleaners. Such cleaners are fitted in a way that makes explosions improbable. For instance, explosion-proof ultrasonic cleaners have high-density foams that obscure spark points from solvents. However, be sure to follow the regulations given by National Electric Code (NEC) and the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) concerning the use of such flammable substances.
Myth 8: Ultrasonic Cleaners is Harmful to Operators
This is one of the myths that have no scientific backing. Chances are some people believe ultrasonic cleaners are harmful because of the frequency. But there are no known effects of ultrasonic cleaning on the health of operators.
In fact, ultrasonics are often used as an alternative to X-rays, which are known to cause harm to the body.
In this article, you’ve seen some of the common myths about ultrasonic cleaners. You’ve also been shown the real truth regarding these myths. Clearly, most myths on ultrasonic cleanings are not true. They are rumors that have become popular over time. Ultimately, what you need to know is that ultrasonic cleaners are safe and extremely efficient for your cleaning needs.
They can be used for cleaning items in a wide range of fields, including firearms, jewelry, surgical equipment, dental equipment, and a host of others. All you need to do is to follow the manufacturer’s manuals and labels for operating the ultrasonic machine.