This is the fourth part of a four-part article about wall-mounted chemical proportioners.

Chemical proportioners have improved over time, virtually eliminating many of the issues that led to equipment breakdowns or malfunctions in the past. For example, some dispensers now have metering tips inside the bottles instead of inside the dispensers.

“It used to be a huge headache dealing with air gaps in tips or harsh chemicals eating away at the tip over time,” says Shawn Sizonen, sales manager for Professional Supply Inc., Sheboygan, Wisconsin. “Now, with tips inside the bottles, you just replace the bottles when the product is finished, and you no longer have to worry about the tips wearing out.”

Despite such improvements, things still go wrong, in which case distributors should always try to fix the problem first before replacing the entire unit.

“The units are not cheap, and a lot of times the distributor is eating the cost of the dispenser,” says Roxanne Hassman, janitorial category manager for Martin Bros. Distributing in Cedar Falls, Iowa. “So if you have service people readily available, it’s best to try to service that machine, or you may be stuck replacing the whole unit.”

Hassman has nine janitorial specialists in the field that service the company’s chemical dispensers.

Some distributors offer routine preventative maintenance while others only respond to service calls. Recurring service calls on the same issue can often be traced to user error.

“A lot of times you see repetitive maintenance issues … and you can narrow it down to a particular user. … Sit down with them and do some training on how to use the system properly. It goes back to educating the customer so they know for the future,” says Jason Jones, vice president of sales for Cavalier Inc.

Kassandra Kania is a freelance writer based in Charlotte, North Carolina. She is a frequent contributor to Sanitary Maintenance.