Cleaning baskets may be an optional accessory when buying an ultrasonic cleaner. That’s because many users may already have baskets. Ultrasonic cleaner baskets are needed for two major reasons:
To keep products being cleaned from contact with the bottom of the ultrasonic cleaner tank. Otherwise severe damage and eventual leaking will result due to vibrations.
To ensure cavitation (cleaning) action is maximized by holding products at the optimum level above the tank bottom. This is why different tank dimensions call for correct basket specifications.
Ultrasonic Cleaner Basket Loading Tips
Most ultrasonic cleaner baskets are designed with an open mesh bottom of sufficient strength to hold products being cleaned. That said, do not overload your basket. Avoid stacking products in an attempt to clean more at the same time. In addition, parts should not be in contact with each.
Expanding on these points, generator-powered transducers mounted to the cleaning solution tank cause the tank to vibrate at ultrasonic frequencies producing cavitation cleaning action.
If parts in your ultrasonic cleaner are in contact with the tank bottom they start to abrade the metal, somewhat like a drill, and eventually will wear a hole in the tank. Note: A leak may irreparably damage tank electronics. This is another good reason to use baskets.
As to the second point, if parts are in contact with each other the cleaning action can be inhibited, and there could be vibration induced damage to surfaces.
Ultrasonic Cleaner Basket Design
When you select an ultrasonic cleaner you’ll be basing your selection on the size of parts you will be cleaning. Keep in mind that the dimensions of the ultrasonic cleaner basket are less than tank dimensions. Ultrasonic cleaner baskets must be large enough to insure parts being cleaned are fully immersed in the cleaning solution.
For example, the .75 gallon capacity Elmasonic EP30H has tank dimensions (LxWxD) of 9.4 x 5.4 x 3.9 inches. The recommended ultrasonic cleaner basket for this model has dimensions of 7.8 x 4.2 x 2.0 inches.
Baskets designed for Elmasonic E Plus, S and P benchtop ultrasonic cleaners are equipped with handles that fit over the rim of the cleaning tank and hold the basket bottom at the optimum position above the tank bottom.
Elmasonic ultrasonic cleaner baskets are fabricated of stainless steel. They come in several configurations broadly classified as:
Open Weave Baskets (sides and bottoms) commonly used with industrial type cleaners such as the Elmasonic xtra ST and Elmasonic TI-H series industrial cleaners
Solid-Side Baskets with Mesh Bottoms found on benchtop E Plus, S, and P series ultrasonic cleaners
Fine-Screen Immersion Baskets are used to hold small parts such as fasteners and screws. These can be positioned in open weave or solid side baskets or otherwise suspended in cleaning solutions.
Plastic Baskets may be called for when cleaning extremely delicate parts such as glass tubing and gemstones that may be damaged when in contact with stainless steel. Note that by its nature plastic slightly inhibits cavitation action.
Alternatives to an Ultrasonic Cleaner Basket
If you clean very large parts an alternative is a mechanism to lower the part into the ultrasonic cleaning solution.
Again exercise care to keep the part from contacting the bottom of the tank. Some tanks are designed with ridges fabricated on the bottom to hold these parts, thus freeing the raising and lowering mechanism for use elsewhere during your cleaning cycle.
For more information on the importance of an ultrasonic cleaning basket, please watch the video below from our Learning Center.
Call or chat with our experts for more information on the importance of baskets in ultrasonic cleaning cycles.