Pressure Washing Livestock Trailers
Your livestock trailer represents a significant investment and important part of your ag operation. To keep it in its best condition, it’s important to keep it clean. Leaving animal manure and urine on it can stain interior and exterior surfaces. Once you’ve mucked it out and removed any mats or liners, it’s time to get out the pressure washer to clean your livestock trailer. A hot water pressure washer makes quick work of the job, using less water and providing better cleaning and disinfecting.
Cleaning and Disinfecting
When you’re faced with a caked-on mess of mud and manure on the inside of your livestock trailer, your best bet for fast, thorough cleaning is with a hot water pressure washer. An electric model avoids the use of fuel and exhaust fumes, but a gas model is also an option if a power supply isn’t available near your water supply. When used with a gentle detergent, a hot water pressure washer provides excellent cleaning and disinfecting for agricultural applications. In addition to cleaning your trailer, you can use it to clean stalls, bins, equipment, and other messes around the farm.
Preparing to Pressure Wash Your Trailer
The first step is mucking out the livestock trailer. Make sure it is free of large quantities of manure, straw, hay, spilled feed, and other debris. Remove any mats, chains, or other accessories that can get in your way and trap dirt and moisture. Those can be pressure washed separately.
Next, consider the PSI of the pressure washer and choose a cleaning nozzle. A rotating or rotary nozzle may be a good option for cleaning the interior of your trailer. Rotary nozzles are very powerful, providing a concentrated circular flow of hot water that works well on unpainted surfaces that are caked with manure and mud. You may want to switch to a gentler nozzle for cleaning the exterior, so you only remove dirt and grime and not paint, reflectors, and decals while you pressure wash.
Pressure Washing Procedure
It’s always a good idea to test the pressure washer on the surfaces. Start several inches from the surface and gradually get closer to determine the best distance for cleaning. Once you find the sweet spot, start on the inside and work your way from the top, down the sides, across any gates or separators, and finish on the floor. You may need to continue to push wet manure and muck out of the trailer as you pressure wash. If you don’t, the wet, mucky mess on the floor of the trailer can splash back up onto the sides of the trailer.
Once finished on the inside, proceed to the outside. Remember that you may need a different nozzle for cleaning painted surfaces or those with reflective or decorative decals. You may also be able to start with the nozzle further back. Let your livestock trailer dry thoroughly before replacing mats or other accessories.
When you return from hauling livestock in your trailer, be sure to clean it sooner rather than later. Cleaning it will help prevent stains and rust that can form from contact with manure and mud.
Choosing a Pressure Washer
If you’re looking for a pressure washer or want to upgrade the cleaning equipment on your Ohio farm, consider your options for portable versus stationary pressure washers, electric/gas and hot/cold water. Contact Alklean Industries—the Houston and Pasadena area’s cleaning equipment experts—to learn more about the durable pressure washing equipment we carry that will keep your entire farm looking great.