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Why is Packaging Machine Maintenance Important for Gears and Belts? 

Packaging Machine Maintenance

Every minute that one of your business' packaging or labeling machines is offline due to an issue with gears, belts, or various other components, is a minute that you're not making money. That, in essence, is why packaging machine maintenance is so important - it helps protect the significant investment you've already made in the equipment and it keeps your productivity high at the same time.

If you want to make sure that you're handling all packaging machine maintenance needs properly when it comes to gears, belts, and more, there are a number of key things that you'll want to keep in mind.

Common Packaging and Label Machine Issues

One common issue with packaging machines in particular has to do with a situation where the film is not moving through the machine the way it could be. This may be caused by a few different reasons, including rollers that are not spinning freely and pull belts that have not been set up properly.

Another common issue that some experience with these types of machines has to do with what is called a jaw jam - meaning that an issue is causing a jam in the sealing jaws. This could be due to low air pressure or even incorrect timing between the filler and bagger.

Importance of Packaging Machine Maintenance

A proper maintenance regimen for your packaging machines - particularly when it comes to gears, belts, and other important components - is always critical from a cost perspective first and foremost. It is simply far less expensive to take care of a small issue now before it has a chance to become a much bigger and more expensive one later. This type of proactive maintenance reduces not only costly repairs but also significant periods of unplanned downtime as well.

You don't have to worry about waiting for a technician to arrive at your facility to troubleshoot what is going on. You won't have to contend with a machine that is now offline while you wait days or even weeks for replacement parts. You can keep everything running smoothly and efficiently, exactly the way it should be.

How to Keep your Timing Belt Pulleys, Sheaves, Pulleys, and Flanges Maintained

When it comes to timing belt pulleys, sheaves, flanges and other essential elements, one of the most important best practices you can follow involves sticking to a preventative maintenance inspection first and foremost.

That means regularly inspecting both the packaging machine and the aforementioned components to check for signs of issues or wear and tear. As those parts do naturally age, they should always be monitored and swapped out with newer alternatives as-needed.

Likewise, it's always important to make sure that your high wear parts are always kept in stock - that way if you do have to replace something, you won't have to wait for a part that may be on backorder from the supplier.

This is also why it's important to know where you will procure components like timing belt pulleys when the need arises. At IPG, for example, our stock is made on-demand according to the exact specifications of our client. You can select the material, the tooth profile, and the number of teeth and have the right, custom solution in your hands in a matter of days.

Finally, making sure that your packaging machines and other equipment are always properly lubricated is a big part of keeping everything functioning at its best. Each type of machine that you're working with will have its own unique preventative maintenance plan as dictated by the original manufacturer, so make sure that you check all documentation carefully before proceeding.

Along the same lines, you should always make sure that you fully understand the parts that you're working with and any spare parts that you need to keep on-hand. For the best results, try to separate them into a few logical categories like:

  • Low wear parts. These are important, but at the same time they historically have not been known to fail, especially unexpectedly.
  • Medium wear parts. These parts are high quality and still last a long time, but there will come a day when they need to be replaced, and you should always be prepared for that eventuality.
  • High wear parts. These are the parts that are used heavily and, because of that, are more likely to fail than others. Parts that would fall into this category are also those that you would need a long lead time in order to secure replacements for.

Finally, always make sure that you're planning ahead for both necessary upgrades and equipment obsolescence. This is true not just for the machines themselves but also for pulleys, gears, timing belts, and more.

There will likely come a day when a crucial piece of machinery is not operating at peak efficiency for whatever reason. When that day comes, the first option to explore should be upgrading various components. That will always be less expensive than an outright replacement.

But if you've performed those upgrades and are still dealing with packaging equipment that is constantly breaking down or in need of expensive repairs, you should both be ready for the idea that it will need to be made obsolete and replaced and understand the exact steps you will take to make that happen as quickly as possible.

Reach out to IPG; We Can Help!

At Illinois Pulley and Gear, we understand how critical your packaging and labeling equipment is to your overall success as an organization. Not only do you need reliable and long-lasting machines, but you need options that offer the precision you need, no matter what. That's why our passionate and experienced team members are ready and waiting to address any issues with timing belt pulleys, gars, sheaves, flanges and more - all so that you can rest easy knowing that your maintenance needs are taken care of.

If you'd like to find out more information about why packaging machine maintenance is so important for gears and belts, or if you'd just like to speak to someone directly about what you're looking for in a partner, please don't delay - contact IPG today.