July 2012 Newsletter (vol.9) >> Maintaining Your Fertilizer Injector
You rely on your fertilizer injector to provide accurate and consistent dosing every time you use it, which for most, is at least once a week during the growing season. For a piece of equipment you rely on that much, how often do you do routine maintenance on it? Would you even be able to tell if your injector was losing accuracy before the results were obvious in your plants? Unfortunately, wear on the parts is inevitable over time. Routine maintenance, cleaning, and testing of your fertilizer injector should be a priority, and done on a regular basis just like your vehicle.
- Be sure to install a filter on the inlet side of your injector. This will prevent debris from entering the motor of the injector ultimately causing failure. This is especially crucial if your water source is from a well or pond. Failure to install an inline filter will void any manufacturer warranty.
Microns = measures the size of the holes. The smaller the micron number the smaller the particle.
Mesh = measures the number of threads. The higher the mesh number the more screen per square inch; therefore, the smaller particle.
- Keep the suction hose 2”-3” above the bottom of the solution tank.
- Have a cover/lid for your solution tank and use it. Also be sure your solution tank is clean.
- Install the injector on a cold water line that will not exceed 100 degrees Fahrenheit and be sure the water pressure is regulated at the manufacturer’s recommendations for your model. High water pressure can cause permanent damage.
- Test the accuracy of your injector on a regular basis. This should be done monthly if not more often using an EC (Electrical conductivity) or TDS (total dissolved solids) meter. Test the watering solution as well as the stock solution.
- This may seem elementary, but be sure your meter is correctly calibrated before testing
- If you are in question of the injector’s accuracy, be sure the stock solution was mixed correctly before assuming the injector is faulty.
- It is highly recommended to rinse the unit by injecting clear water through the injection hose for 10-15 minutes. This is especially crucial when using aggressive chemicals, suspended chemicals, or chemicals likely to come out of suspension.
- Replace the seals once a year, if not every 6 months depending upon injector usage.
- NEVER apply petroleum based lubricants such as Vaseline, baby oil, WD 40, or motor oil to any part/seal on your injector!
- Dosmatic also recommends replacing the dosing piston (wear parts) annually.
- Clean the inlet water line, solution filters, and solution tank regularly.
***Dosatron produced a cleaner called Dosa-Klean, which is used to soak your injector parts over night. After soaking, they will come out sparkling clean. Dosa-Klean removes calcium, rust, and mineral build-up without any scrubbing.
- Completely drain the unit
- Clean thoroughly
- Store in temperatures above freezing.
Mark it on your calendar! Do routine maintenance to increase the life and help your fertilizer injector run properly.