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NYSERDA Technical Report

NCR3 Automotive Parts Cleaning Project: Technical Report

Replacement of solvent tank with agitating ultrasonics part washer at D&W Diesel*

Old Process

Fuel injector pumps were pre-cleaned in a vibratory degreaser or high-pressure spray washer prior to disassembly. After teardown, parts were placed in baskets and cleaned again in a high-pressure spray washer for one or two 15-minute cycles, depending on the degree of contamination. Pump parts were then cleaned by hand for 15 minutes in a solvent washer followed by a final manual cleaning operation where surface rust was removed with a wire brush.

New Process

Fuel injector pumps are pre-cleaned as before prior to disasembly. After teardown, pumps are cleaned again in the high-pressure spray washer, but only for one 15-minute cycle (even for the dirtiest pumps). Pump parts receive a final cleaning in the agitating ultrasonics parts washer, completely eliminating the need for manual cleaning in a solvent washer. In most cases, manual cleaning with a wire brush is also eliminated, as the ultrasonic cleaning operation also removes light layers of surface rust.

Savings (fuel injector pumps only)

  • No more rework in secondary cleaning process

  • No more costs incurred with solvent tank - this manual cleaning process has been completely eliminated

  • Significant labor savings due to elimination or reduction of manual cleaning operations

  • Reduced energy costs due to replacement of high-pressure spray washer with less energy-intensive ultrasonic cleaning process

  • Higher product quality due to superior cleaning results

The Bottom Line

The installed cost of the equipment is $21,300. Annual savings in labor, chemicals, waste disposal, water, and energy total $10,016. Therefore, the system will pay for itself in approximately two years. Because many other parts are cleaned in this system, actual savings are even higher.

*The information in this technical report is the result of a two-year NCR3 project funded by New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) to evaluate and demonstrate high-performance, energy-efficient and environmentally sustainable cleaning systems for New York State automotive remanufacturers. D&W Diesel is an automotive remanufacturer in upstate New York that was chosen as a test site to implement some of NCR3's cleaning recommendations.

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