Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Arrowline Foamer

In our quest for a low-cost alternative to higher end foam cannons (foam applicators, foamers) we came across this unit made by Arrowline.

At $15.24 it seemed like an attractive unit for the price! It was rated at 2,200 max. PSI and 5.5 GPM max flow rate. This was perfect for most medium duty, gas powered pressure washers. It used the standard 22mm twist connector so off we go with one of these on our Delta Honda powered 2,000 psi pressure washer. We picked it up from PWMall.com who had a pretty decent selection of pressure washer accessories including more expensive foam cannons. Total price out the door with standard ground shipping, $22.11.

It arrived in less than a week. I tested it with Duragloss 902 car wash concentrate as this has been reported to be a good foaming agent in other models.

We used a mixture of approximately 4:1 in this small container (looks like 12oz. bottle).

The results were a bit disappointing. The foam was not a thick foam as you would expect from a pressure washer foam generator. It was more like spraying soap that you would expect out of a normal car wash bucket. The problem with this model is it seems to operate at the low pressure mode of the pressure washer. Perhaps if there was a way to modify it to generate higher pressure, the foam might be thicker.

One of the purposes of a foamer such as this unit is to generate thick dwelling foam that can emulsify dirt away from the surface of the paint. It needs to be thick enough to be able to dwell for several minutes (4 - 5 minutes) so that all the dirt is lifted from the paint and into the foam. This foam barely lasted 30 seconds.

I would say this was not an effective way to clean a car. We will continue to look for another alternative to produce the results we are looking for in the price range that is reasonable. I think less than $50 would be desireable. PWMall.com also carries this unit that may be close to our requirements.

The listed price is $62.52. This model features a brass metering valve. Although slightly higher prices than our initial criteria, this still may be a better alternative.
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