How to Flush Out a Garden Sprayer


The last thing you want to do during the growing season is to accidentally spray an herbicide weed killer on your prize tomato plants or mistakenly spray your roses with the wrong kind of fertilizer. If you don't properly clean and flush out your garden sprayer between uses, however, you may do just that. Cleaning your garden sprayer, its tank and all of its parts is imperative to preventing residues of chemicals from destroying your lawn, plants and garden. Flushing out your garden sprayer may take a few extra minutes of your time, but it's easy--and necessary.

Step 1

Fill the garden sprayer tank with clean water after all the chemical liquid is emptied from the tank. Fill the tank to about 10 percent of its capacity.

Step 2

Shake the water around the tank to rinse it. Spray the water out onto your lawn, garden or wherever you were spraying the chemical.

Step 3

Repeat this process two more times. Rinse the outside of the tank, the sprayer head and all of the garden sprayer's parts with clean water. Allow the empty, clean sprayer to dry before storing it.

Step 4

Clean the sprayer tank using a 1 to 2 percent solution of insecticidal soap between uses. Clean the tank with the insecticidal soap before storing the garden sprayer in the winter.

Tips and Warnings

  • Don't flush out or clean the garden sprayer in an area other than where you were originally spraying the chemical. Don't flush out your garden sprayer near water supplies or streams. Avoid getting the chemicals on your hands. Never clean your garden sprayer with chlorine bleach after using the sprayer with an ammonia-based chemical, such as fertilizer. Combining chlorine bleach with ammonia creates a toxic chlorine gas.

Things You'll Need

  • Garden hose
  • Insecticidal soap


  • Garden Sprayers
  • Spraying Liquid Fertilizers and Pesticides on Home Lawns

Who Can Help

  • University of Missouri Extension: Cleaning Field Sprayers to Avoid Crop Injury
Keywords: clean garden sprayer, flush out garden sprayer, care of garden sprayer

About this Author

Sarah Terry brings 10 years of experience writing novels, business-to-business newsletters, and a plethora of how-to articles. Terry has written articles and publications for a wide range of markets and subject matters, including Medicine & Health, Eli Financial, Dartnell Publications and Eli Journals.