Power Washer FRSFM

Last Review Date: December 29, 2020


I.  Purpose

This standard operating procedure is designed to describe the proper use and maintenance of the power washer at Fort Missoula in order to maintain the sanitation of animal cages at the Field Research Station Fort Missoula (FRSFM).

II.  Responsibility

It is the responsibility of all LAR staff and animal users to know the proper use of the power washer and to understand the proper protective clothing required and proper use and maintenance of the power washer.

III.  Protective Clothing (all supplies are located in the plastic bin outside the washer room)

  • Rubber half-sleeve gloves
  • Goggles
  • Face shield
  • Rubber boots
  • Rubber apron
  • Earplugs are provided if needed

IV.  Procedure     

      To begin power washing:

  • Proper PPE must be donned prior to using the power washer
  • Check that the level of oil is within the proper range
  • Connect all water supply hoses if not already connected
  • Place the proper tip onto the wand
  • Turn on the water source
  • Turn on the power switch
  • Close the door to the power washing room
  • Turn on the light/fan for the room
  • Squeeze the trigger on the wand to allow for pressured water to start running

      When finished power washing:

  • Turn off the power switch
  • Turn off the water supply
  • Relieve the pressure in the line by squeezing the trigger on the wand
  • Remove the tip from the wand and place it back into the holder
  • Place wand back into the holder attached to the wall
  • Coil the wand hose up neatly

V.  Safety

  • Only one person in the power washer room at a time when the machine is turned on
  • Always wear all proper PPE
  • Always keep the wand tip away from your face and body
  • Only squeeze the wand trigger when it is pointed at the object to be power washed
  • Use the proper tip for the item to be power washed – tip guide is located near the power washer

VI.  Monitoring Oil Levels

  • Monitor oil levels by observing the dipstick on the power washer engine
  • Do not turn on the power washer if the oil level is low; contact LAR staff to refill the oil

VII.  Sanitation Monitoring

  • Hygiena SystemSURE Plus (see SOP (SOPSystemsSUREsanitationsystems.php)) – indicated that sanitation has occurred; clean caging tested monthly
  • Peroxigard is applied to caging after initial power washing, allowed to rest for 5 minutes, then power wash again.

VII.  Troubleshooting

  • For specific power washer problems, call LAR (406) 243-4892 or Bret Tobalske (406) 207-9035