Silver Creek Farms increases employee morale and overall efficiency with robotic power washing

In the world of hog farming, efficiency and a positive working environment aren’t just goals; they’re necessities. At Silver Creek Farms in Darlington, Wisconsin, the challenges of power washing a sow barn while juggling other tasks are well understood. Power washing has always been a dreaded task on the farm. When they discovered Washpower, they knew it was the solution they had been searching for.

Challenges with Manual Washing

Silver Creek Farms is a 1,500-head family-owned sow farm that prides itself on exceptional animal husbandry, efficiency, and sustainability. Before adopting the wash robot, significant challenges arose with traditional power washing. Labor was a constant issue, as the staff needed to power wash the rooms manually while also attending to other tasks on the farm. Power washing is labor-intensive, and takes a toll on employees’ bodies as they wash for hours on end.

Christina Meylor, who raises pigs with her team at Silver Creek Farms, says, “Having the robot has become very efficient. It has reduced the labor time for washing and has increased employee morale. Labor was a major issue; people were needed for other tasks but were tied up with power washing rooms.”

Ease of Use and Smooth Implementation

When Silver Creek Farms acquired the wash robot, Washpower came out to help train the staff working with the robot and iron out any kinks before running the unit for the first time. Together with the staff, the wash settings were optimized to ensure the best possible results, and these settings were saved. Once the settings are made, all that is needed is to hook up the robot, select the preprogrammed wash cycle, and press play on the screen.

Christina mentions, “With the help of the Washpower team, we optimized the wash program, and can switch between the saved wash programs to get the most out of the robot in each room.”

Improving Efficiency and Workflow

On wean day, it is challenging to get everything done on time. A significant benefit of the robot has been improved workflow. Christina adds, “With the robot, animals can be loaded into the rooms more quickly, and the washing process can be completed a day earlier than before. Previously, power washing would start on Thursdays and drag on to Fridays. With the speed of the robot, we can get everything done on Thursday, which is a much-needed relief on busy wean days.”

The unit often runs while the staff goes for lunch. Recently, the robot was updated with a texting module that can notify staff on their phones when the wash is done or if the robot encounters any issues. This provides reassurance that the robot is working as intended even when staff are away from the farrowing rooms.

Reliability and Service

The wash robot at Silver Creek has been a reliable workhorse for over a year now and has required no repairs in the 350 hours that it has been running. In terms of maintenance, the only requirements have been some greasing, and tightening of a belt, which Washpower assisted with. Christina Meylor said, “The robot has been reliable and has required little maintenance. Whenever there have been questions or any needs, Washpower has been responsive and done a great job of explaining.”.  This has ensured a smooth and positive experience. This process is facilitated by Washpower´s dedicated service team working from an office and warehouse near Chicago, Illinois, that always are ready to serve hog farmers all over the US.

Altogether, the Washpower robot has transformed power washing at Silver Creek Farms. The robot saves labor, improves workflows, and boosts morale. With the support of Washpower, a clean and healthy environment can be provided for the pigs while optimizing operational efficiency.

Washpower Inc

1703 Division St
Melrose Park IL, 60160
Phone: +1 312 900 1703