The Australian Mining Review - - PRESSURE CLEANERS - RAY CHAN

Apres­sure cleaner, also known as pres­sure washer or water blaster, is es­sen­tially a water pump, en­er­gised by a power source, that takes in water from a water sup­ply and de­liv­ers it un­der pres­sure to the high pres­sure noz­zle ac­ti­vated by a wash gun.

How­ever, there are pres­sure clean­ers and there are pres­sure clean­ers.

When it comes to choos­ing these prod­ucts for in­dus­trial and min­ing sites, com­pa­nies want units that are more than just the av­er­age do­mes­tic pres­sure washer: they need to be ro­bust, ca­pa­ble of de­liv­er­ing high water vol­ume and pres­sure whilst able to with­stand rugged con­di­tions.

And that’s why prod­ucts made by Aus­tralian man­u­fac­turer Spit­wa­ter are in high de­mand: the busi­ness spe­cialises in a com­plete range of high pres­sure water clean­ers, used across var­i­ous re­source sec­tors through­out the coun­try.

Aus­tralian Min­ing Re­view took a closer look at its qual­ity range and oper­a­tions.


Ac­cord­ing to Spit­wa­ter di­rec­tor Gary Rodgers, when com­pa­nies buy equip­ment for their busi­nesses, they ex­pect two things: gen­uine value and a so­lu­tion to their prob­lem.

“At Spit­wa­ter we un­der­stand this and we guar­an­tee that there is no bet­ter prod­uct than ours to meet the chal­lenges of com­mer­cial and in­dus­trial clean­ing,” he said.

“We make this prom­ise be­cause at Spit­wa­ter we de­sign and man­u­fac­ture a full range of high pres­sure clean­ers. “We are sure to have the per­fect high pres­sure cleaner to lit­er­ally make your clean­ing prob­lem dis­ap­pear.

“In­dus­trial clean­ing is repet­i­tive and messy whether it’s wash­ing min­ing trucks and farm ma­chin­ery, clean­ing a food pro­cess­ing op­er­a­tion ev­ery 10 min­utes, or re­mov­ing graf­fiti.

“When you buy a Spit­wa­ter you know that your high pres­sure cleaner will work ev­ery time and will clean just as well af­ter 1,000 wash­downs as it did the first.”

With range of ‘off-the-shelf’ ma­chines of­fer­ing water flow rates up to 30 Litres per minute and pres­sures up to 400 bar, there is no dirt or grime that can stand in Spit­wa­ter’s way.

To sup­port the in­vest­ment, there is a fac­tory backed sales and ser­vice of­fice in each state with di­rect ac­cess to an im­pres­sive in­ven­tory of spare parts, as well as an ex­ten­sive and ex­pe­ri­enced dealer net­work Aus­tralia-wide.


Gary said that Spit­wa­ter has been de­sign­ing and man­u­fac­tur­ing ma­chines at its mod­ern pro­duc­tion fa­cil­ity in Al­bury, in south­ern NSW, for more than 35 years.

“We also have the ca­pac­ity to build cus­tomised mod­els on re­quest for highly spe­cialised ap­pli­ca­tions, such as min­ing” he said.

“Ex­pe­ri­ence has taught us what our clients have to clean, and we build prod­ucts to match the chal­lenge.”

Spit­wa­ter high pres­sure clean­ers are avail­able in cold as well as hot & cold water con­fig­u­ra­tions, be­cause ev­ery clean­ing job is dif­fer­ent.

The range of avail­able ma­chines can pro­duce pres­sure up to 400 bar with the hot water clean­ers able to pro­duce tem­per­a­tures of up to 150oC in steam mode.

The in­built heat­ing coils in the hot water mod­els are man­u­fac­tured in-house by the com­pany’s ex­pert trades­men, us­ing up to 47 m of steel, seam­less pipe. Mild steel heat­ing coils are stan­dard, but seam­less stain­less steel is op­tional for heavy duty ap­pli­ca­tions.

Spit­wa­ter range of elec­tric pow­ered ma­chines of­fers both sin­gle as well as three-phase high pres­sure clean­ers for clean­ing jobs which are con­ve­niently lo­cated close to an elec­tric­ity sup­ply. These units are com­pact, pow­er­ful and ef­fi­cient.

When elec­tric­ity is not the best op­tion, then the com­pany’s portable petrol, Diesel and hy­draulic high pres­sure clean­ers are an ex­cel­lent choice.

With en­gines up to 30 hp and pres­sure up to 400 bar, they are suit­able for any clean­ing sit­u­a­tion.

“There is no need to com­pro­mise the main­te­nance regime or hy­giene pro­ce­dures be­cause of a re­mote lo­ca­tion,” Gary said.

Spit­wa­ter uses steel and brass where other brands use plas­tic. The brass com­po­nents are ma­chined in-house from solid bil­lets, us­ing high pre­ci­sion com­put­erised lathes, and the steel is cut with mod­ern laser cut­ters and welded in the fac­tory.

Gary said that so­phis­ti­cated ro­botic weld­ing equip­ment and state-of-theart com­puter-con­trolled com­bined laser cut­ting and tur­ret punch­ing tech­nol­ogy are used to achieve the goal of de­liv­er­ing per­fec­tion ev­ery time.

“And that is just the start,” he said.

“Be­neath the im­mac­u­late pow­der coated or stain­less steel cov­ers, the bases of Spit­wa­ter high pres­sure clean­ers are all zinc-an­nealed to en­sure cor­ro­sion re­sis­tance for a very tough life­time.

“These are per­fect for years of clean­ing on a busy work­site.

“Our ex­pe­ri­enced trades­men per­form the crit­i­cal tasks that re­quire an ex­pert hand.

“They roll, bend and weld all of the steel pipe and tube that go into our high pres­sure clean­ers,” he con­tin­ued, “Once the steel com­po­nents are made, we fit only the high­est qual­ity Ital­ian made pumps, Honda or Kub­ota en­gines and other com­po­nents to com­plete our ma­chines.”

“Our phi­los­o­phy is clear, if it is not the best it does not get used.”


Gary said pres­sure clean­ers had a part to play in re­duc­ing fire risks as­so­ci­ated with heavy duty mo­tor ve­hi­cles, such as min­ing trucks.

“En­gine com­part­ment fires are a re­al­ity,” Gary said.

“How­ever, some sim­ple main­te­nance and clean­ing can pre­vent this from hap­pen­ing.”

Gary said the im­por­tance of a clean en­gine bay can­not be over­stated.

But not ev­ery­one has the proper knowl­edge how to per­form this im­por­tant task.

Spit­wa­ter has out­lined a step-bystep clean­ing method that can help busi­nesses main­tain a clean en­gine bay:

• Pre­pare your pres­sure washer, de­greaser and ap­pli­ca­tor for ac­tion

• Al­low the en­gine to cool be­fore clean­ing as ap­ply­ing chemical or water to a hot en­gine can cre­ate prob­lems, par­tic­u­larly elec­tri­cals

• Fas­ten or re­move any loose items such as cov­ers or guards to avoid dam­age from chemical or water

• Dis­con­nect the neg­a­tive ter­mi­nal on the bat­tery – this will help pro­tect elec­tri­cal com­po­nents from be­ing dam­aged by water

• Use plas­tic bags or wrap­ping to cover any sen­si­tive ar­eas in­clud­ing ECU’s or air in­takes

• Spray the en­gine and surrounds with de­greaser us­ing an ap­pli­ca­tor sprayer or soft brush to as­sist the clean­ing be­fore ap­ply­ing any water

• Depend­ing on the grime level al­low be­tween three min­utes to 20 min­utes dwell time for the de­greaser to work, and re­peat the process if nec­es­sary

• Clean off us­ing your pres­sure washer and then pass over once more for a fi­nal rinse avoid­ing any sen­si­tive ar­eas.

Gary said this sim­ple method can go a long way in pre­vent­ing en­gine com­part­ment fires.

“While any pres­sure washer can be used for this task, us­ing a hot water pres­sure washer will pro­duce the best re­sults,” he said.

“We also rec­om­mend us­ing a good qual­ity de­greaser, which must be ap­plied with a pump-up sprayer for best re­sults.”


Spit­wa­ter came to the res­cue of a large gold min­ing com­pany based in Pa­pua New Guinea, who wanted to re­move heavy descal­ing of oxy­gen sparg­ers (steel pipes) in the au­to­claves.

The client had asked Spit­wa­ter to pro­vide a ma­chine with enough pres­sure and water flow to suf­fi­ciently descale the steel pipes, which had been blocked with large de­posits of scale due to the hard­ness of the water.

The en­vi­ron­ment in­side au­to­clave pipework is ex­treme, with tem­per­a­tures reach­ing 150°C and pH lev­els as cor­ro­sive as stom­ach acid.

The cur­rent method of clean­ing these sparg­ers is to dis­as­sem­ble and man­u­ally scrub them with a large scourer, a process which can shut

down the gold re­fin­ing stage for three days, cost­ing hun­dreds of thou­sands of dol­lars in down­time.

Spit­wa­ter used the HP6030 elec­tric pres­sure cleaner, a cus­tom-built ma­chine run­ning at 600 Bar at 30 L/ min.

This ma­chine was sup­plied with a 10 m, R8 wire braided, 1/4in ther­mo­plas­tic hose, with a 10,000 PSI rated, but­ton drain noz­zle de­signed to nav­i­gate its way through small pipes.

The pres­sure from the tip of the noz­zle un­blocks and cleans even the largest de­posits of scale off the in­ner walls of the pipes.

The pump is driven by a 50 HP stardelta elec­tric mo­tor run­ning at 1450 rpm, cou­pled to a Pratis­soli HF18 high pres­sure pump.

A Ham­mel­mann, heavy duty, dry, cut­off foot valve con­trols the water flow which gives the op­er­a­tor two hands to con­trol the drain hose.

This mean ma­chine, with pump speed of 800rpm, also used a five-tooth belt re­duc­tion sys­tem and a 100 L header tank.


Gary ex­plains how Spit­wa­ter helped one of Queens­land’s largest caged egg sup­pli­ers, based just out­side Toowoomba, solve a prob­lem.

The busi­ness con­tacted Spit­wa­ter seek­ing a so­lu­tion to ef­fi­ciently clean its sheds to main­tain high quar­an­tine stan­dards in or­der to pre­vent disease out­breaks and main­tain gen­eral clean­li­ness.

In the past it had been hir­ing stan­dard high pres­sure clean­ing equip­ment and try­ing to adapt the pro­cesses to suit its ap­pli­ca­tion.

“Af­ter con­duct­ing a site in­spec­tion, the Spit­wa­ter team found a real un­der­stand­ing of the prob­lems they faced,” Gary said.

“The prop­erty has 25, 100 m long chicken sheds.

“Each shed houses sev­eral thou­sand birds over eight lev­els and they need to be cleaned and ster­ilised ev­ery three months.”

Spit­wa­ter pro­vided four Model SW21200PE pres­sure washer units com­plete with 100 m hoses on reels and foam­ing lances.

This pres­sure washer de­liv­ers 21 Litres per minute and 200 bar pres­sure and was the per­fect com­bi­na­tion to pro­vide the speed and ef­fi­ciency re­quired for the busi­ness.

A ster­il­is­ing so­lu­tion was ap­plied through the foam­ing lance from roof to floor and then eas­ily washed down us­ing the high pres­sure lance.

The units proved so ef­fec­tive in this ap­pli­ca­tion that this cus­tomer bought an­other four units for a newly com­pleted op­er­a­tion at a nearby site.


The com­pany’s mod­ern, 15,000 m2 man­u­fac­tur­ing fa­cil­ity uses the lat­est state-of-the-art man­u­fac­tur­ing tech­nol­ogy.

Spit­wa­ter of­fers a truly na­tional pres­ence with fac­tory-backed dis­tri­bu­tion cen­tres in Ade­laide, Bris­bane, Mel­bourne, Perth and Syd­ney, as well as deal­ers and dis­trib­u­tors through­out each state and ter­ri­tory, all of­fer­ing sales, parts and ser­vice sup­port to cus­tomers.

It backs its qual­ity range with world class parts and af­ter-sales ser­vice sup­port.

It utilises only the high­est qual­ity com­po­nents from man­u­fac­tur­ers like Honda, Kub­ota, In­ter­pump and PA, plac­ing the high pres­sure wash­ers at the fore­front of the in­dus­try.

In ad­di­tion to pres­sure clean­ers, the com­pany also pro­duces a range of fan­forced, pop­u­lar, portable in­dus­trial Jet­fire LPG and Diesel space heaters, and dis­trib­utes a high qual­ity range of in­dus­trial and com­mer­cial vac­uum clean­ers.

Model SW2021 Mine Mate, elec­tricpow­ered, hot & cold three-phase, 20A cleaner (3000 PSI, 21 L/min, 10 HP).

Model HP110, elec­tric pow­ered, cold water, sin­gle-phase, 240 V 15A pres­sure cleaner (1650 PSI, 12 L/min, 3 HP)

Model HP201S-HD elec­tric-pow­ered, cold water only, three-phase 20A pres­sure cleaner (3000 PSI, 21 L/min, 10 HP), shown with op­tional hose reel and 20m of hose.

Model 23-350HYD hy­draulic-pow­ered, cold water pres­sure cleaner, 5000 PSI, 23L/min).

Model SW15-200DES Hatz elec­tric-start Silent Diesel pres­sure cleaner (3000 PSI, 15 L/min, 13 HP).

Model SW21-200DE elec­tric start Kub­ota Diesel pres­sure cleaner (3000 PSI, 21 L/min, 23 HP).

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