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How To Maintain Your Snow Foam Lance

How To Maintain Your Snow Foam Lance

One of our most-asked customer service questions relates to the performance of snow foam lances. We've decided to put together this handy guide on how to clean and maintain your lance to avoid poor performance and to maximise foamy goodness!

This is an essential guide to restoring your Slim’s Detailing Snow Foam Lance to its best. It is a fact that over time your lance’s performance will deteriorate from producing thick foam to what looks more like a white drizzle. Basically, the insides of the lance will get caked with deposits and (depending on your area) limescale will also affect the performance of the lance.

Quite simply, a little effort will improve the performance of the lance in no time and the results are worth making the effort! You will need a few tools and a bench vice is a big help but not essential.

You will need:

  • a monkey wrench
  • flat and Phillips screwdriver
  • a small Allen key
  • some picks and brushes to clean the lance

Your lance should look something like the one in these pictures - it has seen good service but needs a good clean. The one we show pictured is fitted with a Karcher adaptor so your one may have a different fitting here but should look roughly the same.

Let's get started.

  1. Placing the lance in your vice or holding it firmly, use your wrench to remove the Karcher attachment, or whichever one is fitted to your lance.

  2. Using a small Allen key, or small screwdriver, push the securing pin out of the plastic head at the front of the lance which will allow you to remove this from the main body and set aside.

  3. Now place the main body back in the vice and remove the adaptor that held the connector. This reveals the injector which can be removed using a flat head screwdriver and put to one side safely.

  4. With the remainder of the body held safely, now remove the blades and blade holder. Taking care, use a flat head screwdriver to remove the blades from the blade holder.

  5. This has now got us to the gauze filter in the heart of the lance, using a pin or Allen key this can be pushed through and out of the blade holder for cleaning. To clean use a household kettle descaler and follow the instruction on the packet.

  6. Using a Phillips screwdriver remove the adjustment knob on the top of the lance. Then remove the O ring as shown - taking care not to damage it!

  7. Place the remaining body back in your vice and loosen the shaft as shown but do not remove yet.

  8. Using a 10mm deep socket detach the nipple connector that the feed hose connects to. This clearly reveals deposits in the feed inlet. This blockage is stopping the flow of soap and therefore watering down the foam as none is getting drawn into the stream coming out of the lance. Clearly removing this blockage will help improve performance.

  9. Using a pin and clean water or pick tool clean the inlet and flush out the dirt. Using an APC like Koch Chemie Green Star can help break down the stubborn dirt and leave the parts cleaner.

  10. Finally, remove the lance nozzle and you should have a collection of parts that can be cleaned and washed ready to put back together.

When you have cleaned all the parts and are ready to reassemble your lance, follow the steps below to ensure you put it back together correctly for optimal use.

  1. Using PTFE tape on the thread to make sure seals are watertight apply to lance nozzle and reconnect to main body using a vice to hold it tightly in place.

  2. Make sure to re-apply O ring to nozzle body. Reconnect the flow adjustment nozzle to the top of the main body with Phillips screw. Apply PTFE tape to the lance shaft thread.

  3. Reinsert the gauze to the blade mount and then screw this firmly back on to the lance end. 

  4.  Replace the hose pickup mount to the bottom of the body of the lance and tighten in place using the 10mm deep socket.

  5. Now reconnect the blades back on the blade holder; this takes a bit of pressure but if held firmly in a vice you can push on using a flat side of a screwdriver or similar tool. Align blades vertically with the lance holder as shown.

  6. Replace the lance cover and insert the holding pin back in place pushing fully back in to secure on to the main body.

  7. Apply PTFE tape to both ends of your connector. Before screwing back to the body make sure you reinsert the injector and screw in firmly.

  8. Then attach your connector and tighten back in place.

  9. Reattach your pick-up nozzle as below and you are good to go!

Tools used to dismantle and clean the snow foam lance are pretty normal tools that most of you will have at home. The PTFE tape is essential to make sure the lance is watertight when reconnected, this is available from all plumbers' merchants and online tool stores like Screwfix or Toolstation.

The one specialist item that might be something not everybody has at home is the 10mm deep socket required to remove the fluid pick up attachment. These can be found from all good tool stores easily enough for a couple of pound, make sure you get the right one to fit your socket set.

You don’t need the cleaning set we picture but it sure is useful as it has a range of very small brushes and picks to clean in the most awkward of areas. These brushes come in useful for many other cleaning functions. This set is officially made for spray painters to clean their guns but is available on our website here.


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