On rare occasions I have been able to get an extra use from the spray
cans by blowing out the tubing and can outlet with compressed air. A
shot of lacquer thinner helps somewhat. Long term, though, it is
pretty much hopeless. Sure would be neat if they marketed a much
smaller sized can maybe in four packs for those many small jobs we
have to do.
They actually do sell a smaller can now. I went to buy some and they
had the regular size cans for $5 or the small (half the amount) size
ones for $4.89. Now that's a huge savings.......
Why not just include more nozzles, or even sell them separately. Even
at 25cents each they could make money on them.
The bottom line, they WANT you to waste half the can so you buy
I often wonder what those in industry use for nozzles who apply this
stuff all day every day. Many of the pre-fab homes are filled with
large amounts of foam. I know that dont come in aerosol cans, but is
applied by machine. Yet, they must have nozzle clogging too.
When you're done spraying the foam and the can still has some material
left in it, you can unscrew the nozzle and put pipe cleaners in both
ends of the nozzle. Also put a pipe cleaner down the hole the nozzle
was screwed into. After the foam hardens on the pipe cleaners, just
pull them out and the dried foam sticks to them.
For any aerosol you should always turn the can upside down and spray
until just propellant comes out. This will ensure that the nozzle
passage is clear for the next time. What happens when you do this
with the foam? Eventually you should just get propellant, then just
cap it for next time.
The foam I use [great Stuff] sprays just fine upside down.
I've had about a 50% success rate in re-use. [using the pipe-cleaner
trick mentioned in this thread] Now I tend to find a bunch of spots
to spray it until I've used up a can- and wait until I think I can use
up a whole can before I start one.
The instructions for Great Stuff used to cover this. Remember when it first
came out and a folded booklet was inside the cap of each can, along with a pair
of disposable gloves?
Anyway, when you are done, unscrew the parts. Dampen some flat wooden
toothpicks and shove one in each of the holes, large end first. So that's one
toothpick into the can, and one in each end of the plastic nozzle/trigger. The
foam will harden around the toothpicks and it just pulls right out later.
It doesn't work as well for the tube since it is too long, so I give it a
squirt of lacquer thinner or acetone when I am done. This dissolves the sticky
foam. You can also clean the parts and can with the solvent, but if you leave
even a little bit it will jam, so the toothpicks work better.
I use a bunch of phone or network wire from pieces of cable. shoving a
length down the tube with a small loop at the end will pull the dried foam
out. Another with a small loop into the top of the can with the nozzle
removed, and a final wire threaded through the nozzle. The small loops allow
the wire to grip the foam and pull it out without the wire pulling out of
the foam. Done this so many times that I now have a number of spare nozzles
Do like I do and take extra ones from the existing cans at the Borg. That
leaves the can unsaleable and it gets returned to the supplier.
If they can't make a product that will allow you to use more than 20%, they
I've cleaned the plastic tube out with wire, 14 gauge after it has
hardened(like the next usage) and also cleaned out the part in the
aerosol can with the same wire, and it worked no problem.
I think the plastic tube can come apart also, making it easier to
I like the idea of sticking a wire into the tube after usage, that
would make it easy to clean.
What the hell. Three posts for the same thing. Sure sounds like
spamming to me.
The spare nozzle is a great idea, but if it costs more than a half
buck you may as well just use as much of the can as possible and toss
the rest. After all, the can of foam is only $4 or $5. So I sure
wont spend more than a half buck to save $2 worth of foam, which
likely wont come out of the can anyhow because the tip of the can
where the nozzle goes is likely clogged.
I followed the directions- sprayed upside-down until no foam came out.
Then the next time I tried to use it, nothing came out, so I pulled a
little harder on the trigger and broke it.
Now I have no idea how to dispose of the can- not for recycling, but
if I put it in the garbage, when the truck crushes it it'll make a
Guess I have to wait for Hazardous Substances disposal day (every few
months around here).
Copyright 2011 by Shaun Eli. All Rights Reserved.
They make dandy plinking targets for your .22, or even a good air rifle.
Good square hit, and instant gratification.
BTW, I've seen the inside of a packer truck up close. It, and the
operators, will never even notice. Bang the side of one sometime- that
is THICK steel.
I've done that.
Once, just for the heck of it, I took a pick ax to the can. It
sprayed over everything including a slightly worn white shirt. Being
on the cheap side, I continued to wear the shirt as if nothing happened.
Only one person ever asked my how my shirt got that yellow, THICK
stain. I was quite honest.
Once, in the apartment I used to live in, I had to store my spray cans
in milk crates on the shelf above the washer and drier. One night,
peacefully wasting time on the computer like I am now, I here a loud
noise in the kitchen. A spray can of some sort of foaming automotive
cleanser had picked then and there to rot through with a catastrophic
failure, and sprayed stinky foam all over the other cans and dripped
down through the milk crate and wire shelf all over the W/D setup. Took
me hours to clean up the mess. Only time in 40-some years of buying
spray cans that has ever happened to me- they usually just quietly (but
neatly) lose their pressure and die on me.
I keep such things in a solid-bottomed container. I've rarely had that
problem, rather something else leaking and ruining cartons. I just find it
easier to store things in solid trays. If I have to clean out the cabinet, it
goes much faster, too.
On Fri, 22 Jul 2011 14:17:59 -0700 (PDT), Shaun Eli
You could always do like some kid I once had for a neighbor. Toss it
in a bonfire.
This kid was a maniac at around 14 years old. I lived next door and
did my best to get along with those people, but there were several
times I told his father what he was doing for everyone's safety, and
the father said he cant talk no sense to the kid.
I still remember the biggest blast of all time. The kid took a pile
of pallets some brush, rotted lumber and several tires, and tossed in
a junked lawn mower with gas still in the tank. Then he set the whole
pile on fire. After the fire was roaring, he tossed 5 or 6 FULL cans
of spray paint in the fire. It was like a damn bomb went off. I had
flaming cans fly past my windows, he started the siding on his own
house on fire, and overhead above this fire was the electrical cable
to one of their barns. Well, that cable melted and blew sparks as it
His father was not home. I was over there in seconds after calling
911 shutting off the power to those wires and using their garden hose
on the siding. We put the fire out before the FD arrived. When dad
came home, someone got a very black and blue butt, (at least twice
because he drank his up his dad's beer before doing this shit too).
I swear, I had the urge to take that kid over my own knee after that
I eventually moved away from there and most of the reason was because
of that kid. If it wasn't fires and explosions, it was guns or
demolition derbys in their yard with old cars, and the older he got
the more destructive he seemed to get.
Amazingly, that kid is now around 30 years old, married and has his
own kids. It's a miracle he survived. Since he dont live nearby
anymore, I now wonder if his own kids are as bad????
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