Degreasers and Degreasing Equipment Information

Ultrasonic cleaning systemDegreasers and degreasing equipment remove grease, oil, lubricants, or other organic films from parts using aqueous cleaners or solvent vapors. Degreasers and degreasing equipment are essentially parts washers that are used to remove grease, soil, oil, abrasive dust, blast debris, swarf, paint, corrosion, or other contamination from the surfaces of components coming off a production line. They often use a pressurized spray or immersion tank of hot or cold water with a detergent or cleaning agent.

Degreasers and degreasing equipment are available both as complete turnkey systems or can be purchased and assembled part by part (or single selected parts can be used to replace worn out ones). Complete turnkey systems include all of the components required for parts washing applications, such as tanks, agitators, ultrasonic transducers, pumps or pressure generators, cabinets, nozzles or wheels, and reclamation systems.


There are three main cleaning processes used by degreasers and degreasing equipment (although specialized systems are available). These three cleansing processes are:

  • hot water cleaning
  • aqueous cleaning
  • solvent, or vapor, cleaning

In hot water cleaning, degreasers and degreasing equipment use a heated supply of water or steam to perform the cleansing task. Aqueous cleaning degreasers and degreasing equipment use water or a water-based cleaning solution to clean and prepare surfaces of parts. Solvent, or vapor, cleaning systems function by evaporating the solvent, which then condenses on the surface of the part. The condensed solvent cleans the parts and drips back down into the tank for reclamation or disposal.


There are a number of types of degreasers and degreasing equipment systems. These include immersion systems (both traditional and ultrasonic) and spray washers.

In immersion tank cleaning systems, or scrub tanks, parts are immersed in a tank where the cleaning bath is agitated with impellers or paddles, or the parts are scrubbed manually.

Ultrasonic cleaning systems use immersion tanks with the cleaning solution vibrated at ultrasonic frequencies.

Transducers are usually immersible or physically coupled in order to transfer their vibratory energy to the cleaning solution.

Spray washers direct a high-pressure stream of water or a water and detergent mixture to clean or remove surface debris (scale, rust, paint, dirt, grease, abrasive dust). 

Multiple jets with rotating heads are often used by degreasers and degreasing equipment to cover a wider area as the surface is traversed or as parts are conveyed through the system.

Related Information

CR4 Community—Formulation Degreasing Chemical

Electronics360—Product Watch

Image credit:

Hannes Grobe / CC BY 3.0