Is Your Water Wet Enough?
A key component to help wash the surface of a printing blanket is water. Many presses are equipped with automatic blanket wash systems. These systems allow for water to be sprayed onto the surface of a blanket during the washup cycle. When water is combined with the correct solvent or Pro-clean cloths during a washup cycle, it helps remove calcium and paper buildup on the blankets.
In many shops, the water used in automatic washup systems is less than efficient with regards to wetting characteristics. The wetting ability of water is referred to as surface tension. This is the force present within the surface layer of a liquid that causes the layer to behave as an elastic sheet. If the surface tension of water is too high,