What Is Ultrasonic Cleaning?: How Does It Work?

What is ultrasonic cleaning

A Complete Overview Of Ultrasonic Cleaning

Over the years, the commercial cleaning sector has made massive strides in cleaning technologies. Today, we have more efficient and environmentally friendly methods.

Ultrasonic cleaning is one of the most notable technological advancements that we have seen in industrial cleaning. It stands out for its speed and effectiveness.

This technology has revolutionised commercial cleaning techniques. Its application has become popular in various industries including:

  • Automotive
  • Healthcare
  • Electronics
  • Remanufacturing

…and many more! Let us take a deep dive into this ultrasonic cleaning and how it works.

What Is Ultrasonic Cleaning?

Ultrasonic cleaning is not necessarily a new concept. Even in the early 20th century, we were familiar with this concept. However, the machines were not commercially produced until the 1950s and 1960s.

Initially, it was used in industrial applications. Yet as technology progressed over the years these devices became readily available to the public. Nowadays they serve a range of purposes.

Ultrasonic cleaning is a process where items are placed in a container filled with a cleaning solution. A machine then generates frequency waves that cause the liquid to move and form bubbles. When these bubbles implode, they generate a powerful cleaning action. It can effectively loosen and separate dirt and grime from the surface of objects.

How Does Ultrasonic Cleaning Work?

If you have ever seen an ultrasonic cleaner make a dirty object spotless in a few minutes, you must have wondered how it works. The process is quite complex. But we can break down the process into its fundamental components to get a basic understanding of the mechanics.

Let’s take a look at a simplified explanation.

1. The Basics Of Sound Waves

Sound waves travel through mediums like air or water as vibrations. The frequency of these waves can vary. Only frequencies above 20 kHz (20,000 hertz) are considered ultrasonic. Human ears cannot hear these frequencies.

2. Components Of An Ultrasonic Cleaning Machine

To understand how an ultrasonic cleaner works, you need to look at its most crucial parts. The 3 most important components of an ultrasonic cleaning system are:

Ultrasonic Generator

This device creates high-frequency electrical signals. These signals are the foundation of the ultrasonic waves used in the cleaning process.


The transducer converts electrical signals from the generator into ultrasonic waves. The transducer typically consists of piezoelectric materials. When an electric field is applied, the piezoelectric materials change shape and produce ultrasonic vibrations.

Cleaning Tank

Because it is made of stainless steel, the tank is durable. It also does not get damaged due to corrosion. Stainless steel is also highly effective in withstanding ultrasonic vibration.

Looking For Ultrasonic Cleaners To Clean The Equipment?

3. The Cleaning Solution

The cleaning solution also holds a massive significance in the whole process. It can be water or solvent-based. You may need to add detergents for enhanced efficiency. Which cleaning solution should you use? That depends on what you are cleaning and how dirty it is! For instance, if you are cleaning medical equipment, it’s better to use medical cleaning products instead of general cleaning solutions.

Types Of Cleaning Solutions

You can use mild detergents for delicate items. Alkaline solutions are ideal for heavy-duty cleaning. And specialised solutions are for specific contaminants.

Role In Cleaning

The cleaning solution helps to loosen and dissolve dirt. That makes it easy for the ultrasonic waves to further clean the object.

Safety And Environmental Considerations

You should use environmentally friendly cleaning products. Before using any cleaning solution in the cleaner, you should ensure that the solution is appropriate for ultrasonic cleaning. What is a ultrasonic cleaning

4. The Process Of Ultrasonic Cleaning

You must now be wondering how these cleaners work. We have got you covered! Let us give you a look at the overall cleaning process. Even the top commercial cleaning company in Sydney follows these steps when using these machines.
  • Step 1: Fill the cleaning tank with the appropriate cleaning solution. Make sure you fill the tank enough to submerge the object you want to clean.
  • Step 2: Place the object in the tank. Make sure the object is inside a holder or basket. This is done to avoid direct contact with the walls of the tank.
  • Step 3: Activate the ultrasonic generator. After turning it on, it will send high-frequency electrical signals to the transducer. The transducer will then convert them into ultrasonic waves.
  • Step 4: The ultrasonic waves will now create microscopic bubbles in the cleaning solutions. This phenomenon is called cavitation. The bubbles will form and implode rapidly.
  • Step 5: This process mentioned above creates intense heat and pressure on a microscopic level. The imploding bubbles generate shockwaves. These shockwaves are strong enough to dislodge and remove dirt from the surface of the objects. They can even reach into the tiny crevices.
  • Step 6: The cleaning process can be over in a few minutes. Or, it may take around half an hour. It all depends on how big the object is. The level of soil will also be a factor.
The best part about ultrasonic cleaning is that it is both gentle and powerful. You can clean various objects using it. And it can remove a variety of stubborn grime.

5. Common Applications And Industries

It is easy to see why ultrasonic cleaning has become so widely used in so many industries – it is remarkably flexible. That is why you can meet its usage in all branches of the sector.

Medical Tools

For patient safety, medical and surgical instruments cleaning is crucial. That’s where ultrasonic cleaning comes into the picture. It is a huge aspect of medical centre cleaning.

Window Blinds

Commercial cleaners frequently use ultrasonic cleaners to clean window blinds. The machine can micro-scrub the surface. It can capably reach into the crevices. That way, you get a comprehensive cleaning.


Did you know that even circuit boards require cleaning? Cleaning such delicate electronic components isn’t easy. If you do it wrong, you risk damaging the item. Ultrasonic cleaning is gentle enough to avoid damage. But it is effective enough to clean the objects perfectly.

Industrial Equipment

Ultrasonic cleaning is capable of cleaning industrial machines. The process can effectively remove dirt and oils from delicate pieces without damaging them. As you can see, ultrasonic cleaning is a highly effective cleaning method. It is primarily used in industrial cleaning. Ultrasonic cleaners are now more accessible. However, it is best to hire professional cleaners for this job. JBN Cleaning is one of the top providers of ultrasonic cleaning in Sydney. We are among the most reliable commercial cleaners in the city. Try our services today!

Hire Ultrasonic Cleaners For Industrial Equipment

Get a free quote

JBN Cleaning

Get a free quote

Get a free quote

Get a free quote