AirWash Backflush

The key to hygienic liners

The AirWash Backflush is a cluster flushing system and a powerful tool in mastitis cross-contamination prevention. The system provides a sanitary liner for every milked cow by automatically sanitizing the inner surfaces of the milking liner after cluster removal.

The results of a study conducted by the Dutch Animal Health Control have shown that Staphylococcus Aureus bacteria are present in the liner for at least six milkings after being used by an infected cow.

Mastitis dramatically reduces milk production and can cause considerable loss of income. Subsequent problems with the animal’s health and fertility contribute to increased expenses. A high somatic cell count in the bulk tank also results in lower payment from dairy processors for the collected milk.

The unique AirWash cluster flushing system reduces the risk of "cow-to-cow" cross infection to an absolute minimum with no changes in your milking routine. The system flushes out milk and bacteria using mains or borehole water with sanitized compressed air.

Concept of operation

The system is simple in design, easy to fit and requires minimum maintenance. The water used for sanitizing the clusters is standard or borehole water filtered and fed into a 10-litre header tank.

The system incorporates Dosatron - an automatic chemical dosing unit in which the water is pumped through, and the correct chemical concentration is mixed in. Most installed systems have incorporated peracetic acid. It results in 99,999% of pathogenic bacteria being flushed from the liner.

Wash solution and compressed air are intermittently injected into the liners for 30 seconds (delay could be set to a different value if required) after the cluster is taken off. The injection is carried out via specially designed injectors. The injectors can be fitted to any type of milking liners as they come in three different sizes of 8, 10 or 12 mm. When the system is fitted, there is no need to replace existing milking clusters or purchase special liners. Each AirWash injector has a non-return valve; the AirWash system does not affect the milking vacuum level and stability.

The AirWash Backflush system can be integrated into any brand or type of milking machine and configured for fully automatic operation in two different ways:

  1. Double-sided milking parlours
    The flushing cycle starts with all the milking clusters on one side once the exit gate opens. 

  2. Swing over milking parlours 
    The flushing cycle starts after milking finishes at each point. The AirWash control box senses the "end of milking" signal from the Automatic Cluster Removal (ACR) system. (You can connect the AirWash control box to any existing ACR system.) A manual start push button option is also available. 

The AirWash flushing cycle timings and water usage can be easily programmed to suit your individual needs. As a recommended standard, the system is set to perform five wash solution flushes, followed by a compressed air blast. The total cycle lasts only 20-30 seconds and requires only 400-500 ml of water.


  • Can be fitted to existing clusters.
  • Injects water & solution followed by compressed air into liners.
  • Water fed directly from mains into 10-litre reservoir via water filter and pump.
  • Cluster washes in normal parked position.
  • System fully programmable. Wash cycle can be tailored to individual requirements.
  • Extensive range of control boxes and system are easy to install, and provided as complete kit.


  • No change in liner costs.
  • Does not affect milking technique or operator routine.
  • Provides consistent wash for all four quarters, using 400 ml of water for each cow.
  • Easy and convenient to install. 
  • Large loft tank is not needed. System provides clean filtered water on every wash.
  • Does not extend milking times as liners are sterilized in 20 - 30 seconds cycles. Wash delay can be programmed up to 18 seconds to allow milk sweep.
  • System can be fitted to any type or brand of milking installation.