Cleaning ibc tote

There’s a company near me selling IBC totes for 50 bucks and said that there was starch in them. Can I clean that out? If so, how? And if not, what types of chemicals CAN be cleaned out. Been spending a lot and don’t have the budget to buy a brand new one for $500. Thanks

Just rinse it out real well and run it.


Strap it to a trailer, fill it 1/8 full, put some dawn in there and drive around, hitting every pothole and speedbump you can find.:laughing:


I was supposed to go out to breakfast today, but that didn’t happen so I have time to fully answer your question.

Not all totes are the same. In my neck of the woods they sell them 2 ways, water potable and non water potable. Don’t mess with the non water potable as many of those are too hard to clean to make it worth while. Second, check the ball valve coming off the tote. If it doesn’t have one I’d skip it as that will add a bit to the final payment to make it work. If you can, find one that has a banjo ball valve, that would be the cheapest. Lastly, check the cage, if the cage and pallet are damaged find another.

I’m fortunate, there are many people near me that sell them, so I can pick and choose.

Starch doesn’t break down in cold water. Like @racer says, you can learn a lot about our profession by cleaning in your home and doing house chores. If you have starch buildup on an iron or other places they recommend using vinegar. I would imagine the weak acid is what is working here, you also need hot water as starch is insoluble in cold water. I used to starch my work uniforms after I left the military and my rowan got a buildup after awhile it was a bear to remove manually.

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My experience with starch is for thickening sauces while cooking. Cold water is required to put starch into solution before adding to a warm liquid. Reason being is that once starch is heated it expands quickly and bonds to itself creating lumps of starch in your sauce. Nothing to do with tote cleaning but the starch bit remains true… for cooking at least

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I don’t necessarily have access to hot water to fill a tank like that. What about things such as oils? Motor oils? Diesel fuel? Lots for sail around me that have that in them

Im thinking you pass on those totes for washing. Use for like kinded applications

Last question. Can I clean salt water brine?

Think about what you are doing. You shouldn’t be asking me (or anyone else on this forum) if you can clean saltwater out of a tote. If it is some kind of super concentrated brine, maybe there is too much salt to get rid of.

The bigger question is, where is it going? Just washing it out and putting it in the sewer? In your yard? In a parking lot? What does salt do to grass, to asphalt, to concrete? Could you be fined? I don’t know where you live, but some areas are super sensitive about what goes into the sewers and waterways.

Steer clear of the oil ones, too much work.

Here is a water based glue one not too far from you - no idea the shape or valve