Use detergent

Use of detergents for cleaning of poultry house and fixtures

After production of a group of poultry, the paths, floors, and fixtures will be contaminated with large amounts of grease and protein deposits, which are the remains of both manure and feed. These interact with most chemicals, and reduce the effect of the disinfectant. They are also ideal nutrients for bacteria.

Therefore, it is important to remove this soiling. Clean water is sufficient to remove most of the dirt but the final layer, which contains large amounts of greasy substances and bio-film, cannot be removed with water. Water and grease simply do not mix.


Soaps or detergents contain tensides or surfactants. These are “surface acting agents” that are capable of binding greasy substance, bio-film, and water together.

The tensides consist of a hydrophilic (water loving) and a lipophilic (grease loving) part. The lipophilic part binds itself chemically to the greasy substances and loosens them from the surface and the hydrophilic part can then bind with the water.

Using soap, water and grease is bound together chemically. In addition, when soap is used, the time taken is reduced significantly since the chemical does part of the work. It is much easier to rinse off the dirt with a pressure-washer since the water and the soap molecules combine together with the greasy substances.

A cleaning product for farmbuildings will often contain an alkali as well as detergent since a high pH level in the solution will contribute to the break down of the grease. However, make sure that the formulation is not aggressively corrosive to the materials in the sties, such as electroplated or galvanised fittings. Always be sure that the product contains corrosion inhibitors.

Temperature of the cleaning solution

Some people believe that a hot solution is the best thing. This is incorrect. When cleaning poultry houses and fixtures it is important that the temperature of the solution does not exceed 50ºC or the protein residues will cook on and stick even more. Once this happens, it can be very difficult to remove them.

Greasy substances may become thinner by being heated but this does not mean that they mix with water. When we do the dishes or wash our hair it is easier with warm water. This is because these soaps are very mild substances where the chemical reaction between the soap and the grease happens faster at 45ºC than at 5ºC. When cleaning sties and equipment with highly alkaline soap the high pH level is the active factor and the temperature is of secondary importance.


All types of disinfection agents are broken down to some extent by organic material. Manure and remnants of feed consume the active components in the disinfection agents in such a way that the disinfection is reduced, or, in the worst case, even completely without effect. Therefore, it is important that one cleans away all greasy substances and protein remains before disinfection.

Desinfektionsrådgiveren ApS  -  Ladegårdsvej 2  -  7100 Vejle  -  -  Tel 7585 2474  -  Mob 2140 0474  -  Fax 7584 2475