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5 Red Flags That Mean You Need A PM


Preventative Maintenance is the single most important thing you can do to ensure a long lifespan for your packaging equipment. Through regularly scheduled preventative maintenance (or PM) visits, an expert technician can flag any wear & tear components that will need replacing before they cause permanent damage to the machine. It’s absolutely vital to your machine’s health… But don’t take our word for it, check your warranty. Most OEMs will not honor the warranty unless you have an established record of service.

It’s always a good idea to start a PM program, but if you’re experiencing any of the following warning signs, you don’t have time to waste!

Warning Signs:

  1. Getting Out Of Hand
    Increased operator intervention likely indicates that your machine is not at its optimal settings for your application. When your equipment was installed, the correct pre-stretch level, heat tunnel temperature, or what-have-you was set. Deviating from those settings could cause undue stress on your machine which ultimately shortens its lifespan. Rather than letting your operators make adjustments that could lead to greater issues, contact a professional to assess your line and improve the reliability and efficiency of your machines.
  2. Roll Call
    An increase in stretch film, tape, or shrink wrap usage might indicate an issue with your machine. For example, if your stretch wrapper has a deteriorating film carriage you can see an increase of up to 300% in film cost and usage! If you notice your inventory is depleting faster than usual, your operators could be experiencing increased jams or might be running the package through the machine more than once to ensure a proper seal. This is not recommended, and it may be time for an evaluation.
  3. Make some noise
    Anyone who has had to describe the concerning sounds coming from their car to a mechanic knows that sound can not only indicate a problem, it can give you clues as to what it may be. This should go without saying, but if you detect a grinding or screeching sound when your machine is in use, then a professional visit is recommended.
  4. See the light
    If there are any warning lights, flashing, or visibly broken pieces, it’s best to let a packaging equipment specialist take a look ‘under the hood.’ When a novice attempts to troubleshoot the machine, there is always a possibility that they worsen the issue! An expert technician knows all the ins and outs of your equipment and can usually tell in short time whether your settings merely need adjusting or if certain components need to be repaired.
  5. Down & Out
    Well maintained packaging equipment rarely needs servicing. If your machine frequently requires troubleshooting or repairs to get back up and running, it may be helpful for an expert technician to give it a once over.
    During a PM, technicians can identify components that are broken, worn, or may require a deep cleaning to function ideally. A Best Packaging tech will inspect your packaging equipment to identify the cause of any errors or warning on your HMI. If necessary, they will make adjustments to your machine’s settings so as to ensure ideal settings such as the correct pre-stretch level, or heat tunnel temperature. With our assistance, your packaging equipment should run almost or completely autonomously without constant adjustment from the operator. If you’ve seen any of these red flags (or worse —more than one!) on your end of line, why are you still reading this!? Pick up the phone to get your packaging line back on track ASAP.

If you’re still unsure whether your machines are due for maintenance, give Best Packaging Inc. a call at (888) 930-BEST to speak with an experienced technician and discuss what’s best for you and your plant’s needs.

What’s your take? We welcome guest bloggers! E-mail socialmedia@bestpackaging.com if you’d ever like to collaborate.

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