Daily Ink Removers
Many people ask us why do they need liquid cleaners if they are having their rollers cleaned with baking soda? We firmly believe a top-notch maintenance program includes both a deep cleaning method and a daily wash up routine.
- Deep Cleaning vs. Daily Cleaning
- Liquid Cleaner selection
- "Green" Chemistries?
- Ink Remover Product Listing
Deep Cleaning vs. Daily Cleaning
In between deep cleanings, we recommend the daily use of liquid cleaners as a way to keep rollers from getting plugged or "dirty" prematurely. This is no different than us brushing our teeth every day.
Soda cleaning is a deep cleaning method. Just like we have to go to the dentist twice a year, rollers need to be deep cleaned several times a year to maintain optimal performance.
When liquid cleaners are used during the press wash-up cycle, everything the ink touches will also get cleaned, including ink pumps, chamber assemblies and doctor blades.
The above approach is easy to implement, and something we can help clients with upon request.
When selecting a liquid detergent, make sure of the following:
Is this cleaner safe on aluminum and other soft metals?
Today, many rollers / sleeves and chamber assemblies are made of aluminum or contain soft metal components. Many cleaners on the market today are not metal-safe, and can quickly ruin and corrode these expensive parts and pieces.
Does this cleaner contain any caustic ingredients?
If you notice on the label or MSDS the mention of Sodium Hydroxide or Potassium Hydroxide, it is a caustic-based cleaner. It will work, but can also cause roll damage, especially if it gets underneath the roll's ceramic coated surface. Oven cleaner is a caustic based cleaner, and should never be used to clean a dirty roll.
Can I use this cleaner on my printing plates and other areas of the press room?
Many companies don't realize their plates can also be cleaned to extend their life vs. throwing them away. One company we work with invited us in for a demonstration, and we literally took "scrap" plates out of their garbage, cleaned them with our line of cleaners, and showed this company a way to save a lot of money.
My plant runs solvent and water based inks and/or coatings. Will the same cleaner work on everything I need cleaned?
Yes and no. Cleaning off water-based inks or coatings requires different surfactants and other chemical components than UV or Solvent based inks or coatings. Gravure inks can also present unique cleaning challenges. Some companies will market their cleaners as "all-in-one" chemistries, and even though they may work, you will spend more than necessary if your primary concern is removing one vs. the other.
We recommend making a decision based on what your plant does. To maximize cleaning performance, make sure you choose a cleaner specifically designed for your soil condition. There is a big difference when attempting to remove water based materials vs. solvent or UV based residues.
Does my process require a certified Food Grade product?
If your plant is subject to either USDA or FDA regulatory requirements, and your packaging or product is used in conjunction with food or food applications, chances are the liquid cleaner used in your plant should be Food Grade. This does not apply to all situations, but most companies we talk to who are under USDA jurisdiction just use water to keep their rolls wet and hope it will rinse off the leftover ink found on their rollers.
We have one client, the largest tissue plant in North America, who was using the water-only method. It was in working with them that we discovered the need for a product like this. After a rigorous testing process, we successfully formulated a liquid cleaner that removes their ink and complies with all CFR (Code of Federal Regulations) requirements. See below for more information on this product.
We hear this question a lot:Is there such a thing as a "green" chemistry that works as good as my current non-green formula?
The answer is absolutely. The key is making sure the detergent is classified as non-hazardous, does not contain any caustic ingredients or RCRA metals, and has either no or limited VOC content. It is easy to check out this information – make sure you ask for a product's MSDS, as this document must identify any of the above mentioned compounds.
Below is a brief listing of the various cleaners we carry. All come in either 5 gallon pails or 55 gallon drums.
This is one of our most affordable and environmentally-friendly cleaners we carry. Flex 300 contains no caustic components and NO VOC's. This is a heavily concentrated, all metal-safe product and works on many brands of water-based inks. This product gets diluted down on site, usually at a ratio of 1:10. Flex 300 can be used during press wash up cycle, by hand ("rub and scrub"), and on other items besides printing rollers, including ink pans, printing plates, tools, etc.
One of our most popular cleaners, PK 105 does not contain any caustic ingredients, and works very well on almost all water-based inks. This is a heavily concentrated, all metal-safe product and can be diluted on site at a ratio of 1:10. PK 105 can be used during press wash up cycle, by hand ("rub and scrub"), and on other items besides printing rollers, including ink pans, printing plates, tools, etc.
LW5 was designed for use at plants subject to USDA or FDA regulatory requirements. This is a one-of-a-kind product, and will remove most water-based inks. LW5 is all metal-safe and does not contain any caustic components or VOC's. This is a heavily concentrated product, and gets diluted on-site at desired ratio. LW5 can be used in press wash up cycles, by hand ("rub and scrub"), and on other items besides printing rollers, including ink pans, printing plates, tools, etc. The product Letter of Guarantee is available upon request.
FRP "Resin Remover"
FRP is popular with companies who own distillation systems and soak tanks for parts cleaning purposes. FRP is currently in use at multiple locations of one of the world's largest flexible packaging manufacturers, as they found it dramatically reduced their waste removal costs, met their strict EH&S requirements, and it worked just as well as what they were previously using. FRP is non-hazardous/non-caustic and works very well on all types of inks and coatings. FRP can also be used as a spot cleaner.
Flex 50 is a direct replacement for Flexowash-brand chemistries. This chemistry does contain caustic ingredients, and should only be used on rollers which have already been exposed to Flexowash cleaning solutions. Flex 50 is the only product we carry that is classified as Hazardous/Corrosive. Flex 50 cannot be used on soft metals. The main difference between Flex 50 and competing products is cost – ours is usually less than half when compared to similar products found on the market today.
Armakleen Paint, Ink, and Glue Remover
The Armakleen chemistry is a unique, aqueous based, 2-part mixture that is used in parts washers and ultrasonic machines. This chemistry is a direct replacement for MEK, Toluene, Acetone, and many other hazardous solvents found on the market today. It can tackle almost any type of soil or residue (especially good on adhesives and glues), automate many cleaning tasks still performed manually, significantly lower hazardous waste removal costs, and create a safer work environment.
This product IS NOT designed for use in presses or any type of hand cleaning – it must be used in a parts washer or ultrasonic machine. We have dedicated an entire page to this product – please click here to learn more.