Farmer Eric Ebelhar of Pasture Belt Farms in Owensboro, Kentucky applies a chemical treatment to his standing crops several times a season, switching from corn to beans. However, serious chemical buildup and corrosion occurred on the sprayer booms.
Essential farm equipment is at risk from destructive corrosion as well as costly downtime, repair, or replacement due to ever-present accelerators like irrigation, chemical treatments, and fertilizers. Exposure to humidity, condensation, and other environmental contaminants can further the corrosion on tractors, planters, sprayers, and harvesters, weakening equipment and leaving it prone to breakage and “freezing in place.”
Ebelhar did not want to damage his crops, so searched for a way to keep his equipment clean. “We run one of our units as a front boom sprayer. Because we drive through the spray, corrosion from chemical buildup was a constant battle. Even though we used hot water pressure washers, after a whole day of washing and scrubbing, we still did not always get it off, so this corrosion degraded our equipment.”
Fortunately, the farmer discovered StrikeHold®, a unique compound that works as an anti-corrosion protectant, lubricant, and cleaner. This compound was originally developed to preserve, maintain and lubricate U.S. military weapons and heavy equipment for use in some of the harshest working conditions in the world.
As an anti-corrosive protectant, it applies wet and dries in place. A shield-like film coating protects equipment against the effects of moisture and corrosion, even against saltwater, while repelling sand, dirt, and dust.
Farmers such as Ebelhar have found the rust inhibiting compound to be surprisingly effective in preventing corrosion in a wide range of agricultural equipment. Ebelhar manages 6,000 acres of corn and soybeans and also runs a commercial chemical application business that treats other farmers’ crops.
According to Ebelhar, when Pasture Belt Farms turned to the anti-corrosive lubricant, he found it to be an easy method of preventing such accelerated corrosion while extending equipment longevity.
“StrikeHold seems to have stopped any corrosion on our front boom unit. Using a normal pressure garden hose and cold water, we are now able to wash off any buildup that previously required high pressure and hot water.”
Next year, Pasture Belt Farms will apply it on their corn planters to combat corrosive buildup, since the farm runs a large amount of liquid fertilizer and nitrogen through the planters.
Ebelhar says, “Anywhere liquid fertilizer is run through irrigators or spray equipment it would be very helpful, because fertilizer is quite corrosive. It could both lubricate and provide a protective coat, so would be valuable in dry spreading equipment too. Usually, such equipment has to be washed almost daily to prevent corrosion and premature replacement.”
The anti-corrosive protectant can also help to waterproof and dry out wet electrical gear and other water-sensitive parts and will actually improve electrical performance by cleaning and protecting contacts and internal parts, including circuitry and connections. Because of this capability and its dielectric properties (ability to transmit electric force without conduction) to 40,000 volts, it can help to keep motors, electronics, circuit boards, lighting, wiring, connectors, switches, etc. working properly.
As farm equipment incorporates more advanced electronics and technology, Ebelhar suggests the anti-corrosive protectant can help to promote reliability and longevity here as well.
“We have electric solenoids on every single sprayer nozzle. Just on the boom itself, there are 97 electric solenoids. [The anti-corrosive protectant] has helped to keep all those functional, minimizing downtime,” says Ebelhar.
He adds, “Most ag equipment today utilizes processors, sensors, wire harnesses, and other electronics, so its use could help to protect from moisture and water intrusion during the season or post season.”
According to Ebelhar, preventing such corrosive buildup has helped to make Pasture Belt Farms more efficient.
“With the labor savings in preventive cleaning and maintenance alone, StrikeHold more than paid for itself the first time it saved us some downtime due to corrosion buildup. Just in labor and time we have probably saved about $500 this year so far,” says Ebelhar.
He also expects a notable return in extended equipment life.
“Long term, we are expecting much less downtime and fewer repairs. Using regular water pressure instead of high pressure is also easier on electronics, so the equipment is bound to last longer,” says Ebelhar.
The fast-acting StrikeHold penetrates metal parts that have become frozen or encrusted to get them working again. It contains synthetic-based additives that act like microscopic ball-bearings to reduce friction.
Ebelhar anticipates notable benefits from its use as a lubricant.
“As both a lubricant, protectant, and cleaner, it can help keep our combines in good working order, with all their moving parts, pulleys, belts, and drive chains. It could be useful on everything from planters to combines for harvesting, tractors for pulling or plowing, and dump trucks for hauling fertilizer,” he concludes.
StrikeHold will exhibit at the Sunbelt Ag Expo, North America’s Premier Farm Show, in Moultrie, GA, October 19-21, 2021, in the Family Living area; and Booth #131 in the Agricultural Equipment Shed.