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Bucket Milker Clean-Up

The Joy of (& Steps to) Using a Bucket Milker #2

Ok, so we're finally finishing the Steps to Using a Bucket Milker Post! It's gotta be sanitized or you'll have all kinds of yucky bacteria growing on the milk particles left behind.

A Clean In Place Jetter Washer is on my wishlist...

But until I own one, I clean the time-involving way.

To clean your bucket milker:

Fill two sinks or two sanitized 5 gallon pails as follows.

The first: lukewarm water with dish soap of your choice...

The next fill with hot water (130 degrees or hotter), and with some sort of bleach. You can use store bought bleach. I'm using ECI Chlorinated General Cleaner Powder which came with my milking system.

Buy ECI here:

Or to use a similar product, buy that here:

For household bleach, dilute about 2 tablespoons bleach with 2 gallons of hot water.

For ECI Chlorinated General Cleaner Powder, use 2 tablespoons of cleaner to 2 gallons hot water.

Rinse out the milk pail. Wash the outside, the rim, the outside of the lid, and the hoses with your dish soap water and a clean rag:

And the claw...

Take apart the inline filter piece, throw away the used filter, and reassemble:

Turn the lid to the bucket milker upside down, take off the rubber seal, and submerse the seal in the soapy water. Wash the underside of the lid with your soapy rag, being sure to get well up into the edges.

Put the rubber seal back on:

And clamp the lid back on your bucket:

Time to clean the inside! Connect the vacuum hose to the milk bucket if it isn't already. Put the claw in the soapy water...

Switch on the pump. I use my handy remote button. Without this added, you'll just plug the pump in to start it.

Make sure you don't run more than 2 gallons of water into your bucket at a time. You don't want the pump pulling water through the vacuum lines, and ruining the pump motor.

Pump all the soapy lukewarm water through the claw and hoses, pulling the claw in and out of the water a few times to clean it better. Hold the claw up to pump all the water down through the hose. Turn off the pump.

Dump out the soapy water, and re-attach the lid for the bleach wash.

Pump all the hot bleach water through. Dump that out.

Now for the hot water rinse. I rinse out the sink well and add hot water for a final rinse. Note: According to science, bleach becomes inactive as soon as organic matter touches it. Therefore, not everyone would do this final rinse. Personally, I would rather not risk any bacterial killing properties in my lines or milk bucket possibly messing with the good bacteria which comes along with the milk. I like my kefir and homemade yogurt too well, thank you!

Pump the scalding hot water through. Dump it out.

Disconnect the pump hose. Take off the lid. Hang it up somewhere to air-dry. Dry it off with a paper towel so it shines.

Somehow, not sure how, some water always ends up in the pulsator.

I unscrew the cover and dump out the water.

Rinse out the milk bucket and turn it upside to drain the rinse water...

Shine it with a paper towel inside and out.

Then into the freezer so it's nice and cold for next time!

Coil up the vacuum hose & hang it up out of the way

And of course, rinse the sinks or buckets, and allow to air dry, or dry with paper towel.

All shining & ready for tomorrow!

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Aug 30, 2021

Hello from Muddy Toes Farm in Pennsylvania!

I wash our system in a similar way, but with buckets. We also get water in the dome.

Have you checked to see if you are getting water inbetween your shells and inflations? We do and I always pull mine apart a bit to get it out. Water in there causes it to not function properly.

I've been told Nupulse claws are not meant to be washed upside down for this reason, but we don't have a CIP either. Gotta make do right? :)

Aug 31, 2021
Replying to

Hello to you in PA!

No, I have never checked for water there, but I will, now! Thanks for the tip! 😍


Jun 04, 2021

Hey there,

Where can you buy the ECI cleaner? We used to get it from Bob White, but they are no linger in business. Thanks Zach

Aug 31, 2021
Replying to

Hi, Zach. I was sure I replied to this, but it must have been via personal link. Yes, Bob White is not currently not in business. There is a similar cleaner available online at Hamby Dairy Supply.

Although...I have been using dish soap for the first wash, then bleach with hot water, then a good rinse with hot water. Sometimes I also use vinegar for an acid rinse before the final hot water rinse.

I hope this helps! 😀



Sharon Faircloth
Sharon Faircloth
Feb 25, 2021

Bless your heart, that looks like a lot of work! 😅 how long does the whole “washing up after” process take?

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