Milking Equipment Washing Routines

Dr. David Gleeson (Teagasc)

Choosing a wash routine- 4 most popular routines
• Routines which include more regular acid cleaning (C, D) are highly effective in maintaining low bacterial numbers on any size milking system; however this system is more suited to plants with automatic wash systems for safety reasons.
• Liquid products are more suitable than powder products where automatic cleaning is in place.
• Cold wash systems (B, C) require a higher working solution of sodium hydroxide and require increased contact time to be effective as they do not contain a sterilizer (chlorine).
• Non-chlorine systems eliminate the risk of chlorine residues. However higher product usage rates, hot water and more regular acid cleaning are required.

Key point: There are several different types of wash routines. Whatever system you choose, make sure a set routine is known and followed by all milkers. Ensure you measure and use the products as per the manufacturer’s instructions.

 

Terminology Explained
Sodium Hydroxide = Caustic
Sodium Hypochlorite = Chlorine

Routine A: Hot Detergent-steriliser cleaning
Detergent-steriliser (Sodium Hydroxide and Sodium Hypochlorite) e.g. Dairygold Universan
 
1. Wash outside of clusters, attach jetters and remove milk filter
2. Rinse plant with 14 litres (3gls) of water per unit (cold or warm)
3. Add liquid detergent-steriliser at the manufacturers recommended usage rate to hot water (65-75oC), allowing 9 litres (2gls) per unit
4. Circulate the hot solution for 8-10 min, allowing first 5 litres to run to waste, the solution may be retained for the 2nd daily wash (if retained; discard solution after the second daily wash)
5. Rinse the plant immediately after the main wash cycle with 14 litres (3gls) of cold water per unit
Optional extra-After step 5 is complete, Peracetic acid may be added as a sterilizer, at the manufacturer recommended usage rate to an additional rinse water cycle
6. Ensure the system is drained before the next milking

Once weekly
• After step 2, add an acid descaler (milkstone remover) e.g. Dairygold Descaler XT at the manufacturers recommended usage rate to hot or cold water:
-Allow 9 litres (2gls) of water per unit
-Circulate the solution for 8-10 min and discard
-Rinse plant with 14 litres (3gls) of cold water per unit
-Continue with steps 3, 4, 5 and 6

Key point: Detergent-steriliser washing routines require immediate rinsing after the main wash cycle

Routine B: Cold cleaning
Detergent powder (sodium hydroxide, chlorine free) e.g. Dairygold Cold Wash
 
1. Wash outside of clusters, attach jetters and remove milk filter
2. Rinse plant with 14 litres (3gls) of cold water per unit
3. Add the detergent powder at the manufacturer recommended usage rate to cold water, allowing 9 litres (2gls) per unit
4. Circulate the solution for 8-10 min; allowing first 5 litres to run to waste. Solution may be retained for the second daily wash. Leave the stain of the solution in the milking plant until just before the next milking.
5. Just before the next milking, rinse with 14 litres (3gls) of cold water per unit
Optional extra-After step 5 is complete, Peracetic acid may be added as a sterilizer, at the manufacturer recommended usage rate to an additional rinse water cycle
6. Ensure the system is drained before milking

Once weekly
• After step 2, add an acid descaler (milkstone remover) e.g. Dairygold Descaler XT at the manufacturers recommended usage rate to hot water:
-Allow 9 litres (2gls) of water per unit
-Circulate the solution for 8-10 min and discard
-Rinse plant with 14 litres (3gls) of cold water per unit
-Continue with steps 3, 4, 5 and 6
• Use detergent-steriliser instead of the detergent powder or at step 3, add sodium hypochlorite (chlorine) e.g. Dairygold Chloras to the detergent powder solution at the manufacturer recommended rate in hot water (65-75oC). Rinse the plant immediately after this wash cycle with 14 litres (3gls) of cold water per unit

 

Key point: Leave the stain from the caustic, chlorine-free powder in the milking plant until just before the next milking. Do not reuse the solution more than once.

Routine C: Non-chlorine cleaning
Detergent /acid cleaner (Sodium hydroxide and phosphoric acid)
1. Wash jetters and outside of clusters and remove milk filter
2. Rinse plant with 14 litres (3gls) of water per unit (cold or warm)
3. After the morning milking*, add liquid detergent (non-chlorine) at the manufacturer recommended usage rate to hot (65-75oC) or cold water, allowing 9 litres (2gls) per unit
4. Circulate the solution for 8-10 min; allowing the first 5 litres to run to waste. When circulation is complete, discard the solution. Leave the stain of the solution in the milking plant until just before the next milking
5. Just before the next milking, rinse with 14 litres (3gls) of cold water per unit
6. Ensure the system is drained before milking

*After each evening milking replace the liquid detergent (non-chlorine) product (Step 3) with a liquid acidic cleaner added at the manufacturer recommended usage rate to cold or hot water (65-75oC), allowing 9 litres (2gls) per unit
-Circulate for 8-10 min; allowing the first 5 litres to run to waste and then discard.
-Rinse immediately with 14 litres of cold water per unit

Key point: Leave the stain from the morning wash using the liquid detergent (non-chlorine) product in the milking plant until just before the next milking. Immediately rinse the milking plant after the evening liquid acidic cleaner wash.

 

Routine D: Hot Detergent-steriliser/acid cleaning
(Sodium hydroxide-Sodium hypochlorite and phosphoric/nitric acid)
1. Wash jetters and outside of clusters and remove milk filter
2. Rinse plant with 14 litres (3gls) of water per unit (cold or warm)
3. -After the morning milking, add liquid detergent-steriliser (e.g. Dairygold Universan) or powder product containing sterilizer at the manufacturer recommended usage rate to hot water (65-75oC), allowing 9 litres (2gls) per unit
-After each evening milking, add liquid acidic cleaner (e.g. Dairygold Descaler XT) at the manufacturer recommended usage rate to cold or hot water (65-75oC), allowing 9 litres (2gls) per unit
4. Circulate the solution for 8-10 min, allowing the first 5 litres to run to waste, and discard when circulation is complete
5. Rinse the plant immediately with 14 litres (3gls) per unit of cold water
6. Ensure the system is drained before the next milking

Key point: Detergent-steriliser and liquid acid cleaner washing routines require immediate rinsing after the main wash cycle

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