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How to Clean Oil Burner Nozzles

Residential and commercial oil-fired heating systems are generally serviced on an annual basis. During normal operation oil burner nozzles may accumulate sludge formations.

These are not removed by fuel in the process of operating the burner but instead bake on nozzle walls. While the prevailing practice is to replace nozzles during servicing it may also be practical to recondition them in an ultrasonic cleaner.

Cavitation action in an ultrasonic cleaner such as the LR 610 available from iUltrasonic is an excellent way to remove built-up contaminants from nozzles. This unit has a cleaning solution capacity of 0.85 gallon (larger capacities are available) and operates at an ultrasonic frequency of 43 kHz. With a tank size of 9.38 x 5.38 x 4 inches deep the LR 610 ultrasonic cleaner is equipped with a heater, timer, drain and cover.

A suggested cleaning solution is non-ammoniated biodegradable CLN-LR 110 concentrate, a natural solvent blend containing citrus oils and surfactants without toxic solvents or caustics. This is shipped from iUltrasonic in 1 gallon containers. Recommended dilution is to 1 to 7 parts with water.

Setting up the System

Once this system is in place you can clean a number of oil burner nozzles on an assembly line basis.

Ultrasonic action can clean oil burner nozzles

When disassembled for cleaning fuel oil burner nozzles parts are quite small. Therefore cleaning should be accomplished in separately ordered fine mesh baskets. Note: when disassembling the nozzles be careful not to damage the attached mesh strainers or sintered filters.

Prepare a small batch of cleaning solution in a separate container such as the optional auxiliary pan.

Load the parts in the fine mesh basket (do not overload) and pre-clean them by swishing them in the cleaning solution to remove excess fuel oil. Allow them to drain. Note: The pre-cleaning solution should be discarded when it begins to look dirty. Dispose of it according to local regulations.

Prepare the ultrasonic cleaning solution by filling the tank half full of water, then adding the correct amount of CLN-LR 110 concentrate based on the tank volume. Continue filling the tank. Activate the cleaner for about 10 minutes to mix and degas the solution.

When you are ready to clean set the thermostat to 130?F (54?C).

Place the fine mesh parts basket in the separately ordered stainless steel cleaning basket and lower it into the cleaning solution. The basket keeps parts from contacting the bottom of the cleaning tank. Activate the ultrasound, set the timer for 20 minutes.

During the cleaning cycle countless minute cavitation bubbles implode on contact with all fuel oil nozzle components to loosen and carry away contaminants.

At the end of the cycle remove the parts, rinse with hot water, and dry. They are now ready for reassembly.

After repeated use the cleaning solution should be replaced. Drain the tank and as with the pre-cleaning solution, dispose of it in an approved manner.

Call the iUltrasonic cleaning experts at 973-440-2191 for answers to your cleaning questions and recommendations on equipment sized to your requirements.


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