Liquid Bottle Fillers: Gravity Pressure vs. Positive Displacement

It’s hard to properly gauge the true value of a liquid bottle filler, or liquid filling machine, until something happens to it and you’re without one. If that’s the case in your packaging operations, you really have two choices – halt operations until a replacement is acquired or until repairs are made and it is back up and running or go about filling the bottles by hand. And if you were to choose the latter option – filling the containers by hand – then we’re betting you’ll really come to appreciate the role your filling machine plays within the facility.

Yes, filling machines are a critical component in the packaging process. They help pack a lot of different products, from milks and juices to oils and lotions. And they operate quickly and effectively, keeping business on track so that the end product gets to where it needs to be when it needs to be there. Oh, and liquid fillers are also able to accomplish this filling without spilling the product everywhere.

Now, just for a moment, picture life without a filling machine. It’s a life where you need to manually fill the bottles or containers along a conveyor line. Not only are you likely to spill product all over the place (no matter how careful you try to be) but you’re also likely to have bottles and containers with different levels of product. Perhaps you can live with the spillage and tolerate some minor differences in product levels – the biggest area where liquid bottle fillers shine has to do with efficiency. Liquid fillers work automatically and quickly, much more quickly than it would be if an individual took matters into their own hands.

While the benefits of liquid fillers are well documented, it’s worth noting that there are several different types of filling machines. Two of the most popular are those that work via gravity pressure or positive displacement. This post will take a look at each of these filling technologies.

Gravity Liquid Bottle Fillers

Gravity fillers are generally a low-cost filling option. However, they best work with thin liquids that don’t change in viscosity when subjected to different temperatures. As the name implies, gravity fillers work by distributing product from above the container. One benefit of gravity fillers, when compared with other types of filling technology, is that they can operate without the use of any specialized nozzles. In fact, most gravity fillers can be outfitted with a variety of filling nozzles pertaining to either the package that needs to be filled or the product that it needs to fill with. Some gravity fillers are also able to accommodate multiple heads to maximize filling of multiple containers at once.

Gravity fillers are applicable to many different types of liquid products, ranging from the food and beverage markets to cosmetic, pharmaceutical and specialty chemical. Gravity fillers are also able to effectively work with hazardous liquids, such as those that are flammable and corrosive.

Positive Displacement Liquid Bottle Fillers

Positive displacement fillers, which may also be known as “servo pump fillers” or “pump filling machines,” operate using a pump to distribute product to the container. Unlike the gravity filler, positive displacement fillers are better suited to work with more types of liquids, which make them an ideal choice for filling containers with the likes of pastes, creams, gels and more. Although positive displacement fillers are more expensive than many other types of filling equipment, they’re an ideal purchase for the contract packaging company who works with a bevy of different customers in various different markets. That’s because the versatility of the machine makes it applicable for just about any liquid with the ability to fill any product.

There are, however, some key disadvantages to the positive displacement filling machine, one of which we already mentioned here – its higher price point. Yes, these types of fillers aren’t cheap, and neither are the drive systems that help the pumps work. What’s more is that it takes quite a bit of technical know-how to properly maintain these types of fillers. So unless you or someone on staff is cut out for properly caring for and maintaining this type of filler, you’ll need to set aside some funds for a professional to come in and service it from time to time.

Other Fillers      

It’s also worth mentioning that there are a few other types of fillers. For instance, overflowing filling machines are ideal for products that produce foam and for products that are thin to medium in viscosity. Applicable liquids that are packaged in clear containers are almost always filled on overflow machines, as such machines excel at filling to exact level, which is crucial when you’re dealing with transparent packaging and the customer can tell the difference.

Another type of filler is a piston filling machine. Specifically, these machines work with high viscosity liquids and are able to process said products in higher volumes than other types of filling technology, which can be advantageous with the likes to tomato sauce and jelly.

Which Filler is Right for You?

So which filler is right for you? Certainly it depends on what types of containers you’re working with and what types of products you need to fill them with. For packages like water bottles, for instance, a gravity filler may work out just fine. But if you’re filling containers with soaps and pastes, a positive displacement filler may be necessary. For other, more high viscosity products, a piston filling machine may need to be a part of your facility’s purchasing plans. In some cases, just one type of liquid filling machine may not cut it and you may need to acquire multiple types in order to support your client base.

Whatever type of filling machine you decide on, one thing is for sure – this equipment can be expensive to acquire. And this can be problematic, especially if you’re dealing with a positive displacement filler that may require a bit more maintenance or may fail prematurely if proper care isn’t taken of it. When it comes time to acquire a new filling machine or add another one to your operations, you can elect to go the brand new route or you can purchase a used machine. Outlets like Bid on Equipment specialize in acquiring used machinery and selling them so that its customers can get like-new equipment at a used price. Often times, this can be the financial relief that companies need to continue their business without interruption.

For more information on liquid filling equipment, and to browse Bid on Equipment’s filling equipment inventory, contact Bid on Equipment today.

June 2016 Trends Report

What has been bringing buyers to Bid on Equipment through the month of June and what are they looking for when they are here?
 
Below are the top ten search terms that have shown the largest increases from Internet search traffic this month.

 

Interest in each of these terms has grown 100% – 1500%!

Used Woodworking Tools Used AC Units For Sale
Used Restaurant Equipment For Sale Boilers For Sale
Used Dairy Equipment Used Printing Equipment
Used Water Heaters Parrot Ice Machine
Used Bakery Equipment Used Refrigeration Equipment
 
The top ten overall categories for Bid on Equipment in the last month.
Woodworking Equipment HVAC
Bakery Equipment Conveyors
Machine Shop and Tools Lathes
Dairy Equipment Tanks
Restaurant Equipment Welding and Soldering
 
The top ten overall Manufacturer Pages for Bid on Equipment in the last month.
Sweco Combi
Trane Cherry Burrell
Bakers Pride Flexicon
Multivac Alto Shaam
Waukesha Bosch

What happened to those Supplies?

Several weeks ago, we launched a pilot project to start offering Packaging Supplies via Bid on Equipment, but we ran into a few unexpected issues and decided it was best to take a step back and reevaluate. After ensuring that all existing orders were completed, we took down those pages to give us a chance to work through the issues we identified and ultimately provide you the best service that we can. We apologize for any inconvenience this has caused.

Powder Blending (and the Difference Between Tumble Blending and Ribbon Blending)

Powder blending is crucial for many reasons. In the food industry, powders need to be blended to form the right ingredients or to provide the correct flavor. In the agriculture field, blending is required to mix the appropriate nutrients for fertilizers. Blending is also extremely important in the pharmaceutical industry, as it helps to create medications to treat various conditions. Additionally, powders are blended for the purpose of coating certain products or materials, for the purpose of improving product quality or to alter current properties of materials, among others.

Powder blending is nothing new or revolutionary. In fact, it’s among the oldest unit operations in solids handling. What is new, however, is the technology and equipment that continues to evolve for powder blending purposes as designers and engineers better understand what types of powders need to be blended and address challenges or equipment shortcomings accordingly.

The Various Types of Blending

As you may imagine, there are several different types of blending, which all boils down to what types of powders need blending and what the end application is. There are three basic types of blenders. These are classified as small-scale random motion (also commonly referred to as “diffusion”), large-scale random motion (also commonly referred to as “convection”) and shear.

As the name implies, diffusion blending works with smaller particles and occurs when said powders are distributed over a fresh interface. Diffusion blending is important when high homogeneity is desired. It’s also a rather slow blending style. Conversely, convection blending works with large particles and uses an impeller or similar instrument to move particles from one point to another. Convection blending is ideal for cohesive materials, and this type of blending also enables liquids to be added during the process. Finally, there’s the shear style of blending, which incorporates additional materials, such as granules, to help the blended mix reach a certain level of consistency.

Now that we’ve briefly gone over the different types of blending, it’s worth pointing out some of the more popular solid-solid blending equipment. The three most popular are ribbon blenders, tumble blenders and vertical blenders. In this piece, however, we’ll focus more on what is involved in tumble blending and ribbon blending.

Tumble vs. Ribbon Blending

Tumble blending and ribbon blending are two of the most popular types of blending for solid-solid mixing purposes. Ribbon blenders, specifically, are a good example of high-speed convective blending in that they’re able to move large particles from one point to the other and in a very fast manner. Ribbon blenders typically consist of a U-shaped trough and an agitating device that consists of several ribbons, which thereby work to move material in various directions. These ribbons are fast operating, with the potential of reaching 300 feet per minute, or fpm. These ribbons move powder in both radial and lateral directions. Ribbon blenders are available in both vertical and horizontal configurations.

Tumble blending, on the other hand, is best for materials that require low impact. Specifically, tumble blenders are rotating mixers that are often available in several configurations, two of the most notable being double cone and V-shaped. Often times, these configurations are also interchangeable.

Tumble blenders operate somewhat slowly, usually at speeds of anywhere from 5 to 25 rpm, or revolutions per minute. They work via the diffusion style, which, as we covered earlier in this piece, blends smaller particles.

But how do you know which one is right for you if speed of powder blending isn’t a huge issue and the blend you’re dealing with would suffice in either application? Here’s a look at some further considerations to help you make the choice between tumble blending and ribbon blending.

  • Tumble blenders are generally larger than ribbon blenders, especially vertical ribbon blenders, which take up the least amount of room on a plant floor. So if space is at a premium in your shop, know that a vertical ribbon blender will likely be the best option. Generally speaking, tumble blenders are the types of mixers that take up the greatest amount of space.
  • Do you need the blender to discharge completely? If that’s the case, then the tumble blender is your best bet, as such mixers discharge near 100 percent.
  • When it comes to producing the highest-quality, lump-free blend, ribbon blenders are the ideal mixer. That’s because the high speeds at which the ribbon blender works at ensures that the product it is processing mixes efficiently. While you can purchase and install lump breakers or the likes of choppers on any type of blender, ribbon blenders are still a cut above the rest when it comes to producing lump-free.
  • Heat or no heat? Ribbon blenders generate more heat than other types of blenders, so this should be a consideration when selecting a blender. However, it’s really only a problem for heat-sensitive applications, as the increase in heat is not significant.
  • Capacity: Ribbon blenders usually only work effectively with powder batches that take up at least half of its capacity, which can be an issue if smaller quantities of product need to be processed. Tumble blenders, on the other hand, usually work just as well when they’re at 10 percent capacity as they do when they’re at 100 percent capacity.
  • Cost: Cost is always a big consideration behind the purchase of new equipment. When it comes to the cost of blenders, they can range from several thousand dollars to tens of thousands of dollars, certainly no small drop in the bucket for companies. Ribbon blenders, however, are considered the most affordable blender compared to other mixing equipment. Now’s also a good time to mention that if you need a blender, you don’t necessarily have to buy brand new. You can buy a previously owned blender, which you can find on a site such as Bid on Equipment and receive a like-new piece of equipment at a used price – no matter whether it’s a ribbon blender or tumble blender.

Though we’ve mentioned many differences between tumble blenders and ribbon blenders, it’s worth mentioning one significant commonality – and that’s blending accuracy. Specifically, both are very good at doing their jobs and creating a well-blended end product when they’re used under the appropriate circumstances. So while it’s important to note the differences between tumble and ribbon blenders, rest assured that each do their job very well when used with the right powders.

For more information on tumble blenders, ribbon blenders and all other types of blending systems – and to browse available equipment currently in stock – visit Bid on Equipment today.

How to Choose a Pump

Pumps are somewhat of an unsung hero in many industrial applications. Their purpose is to move fluids to and fro via mechanical action. These fluids may be liquids, gasses or even slurries, which are considered combinations between the two. This piece will briefly review the functions of pumps, the general classes of pumps and also provide input on how to select the right pump for your application, whatever it is that it may be.

Pumps 101

We already told you how important pumps are in any industrial application, even though it may be a part that you totally take for granted. And industrial pumps are actually usually divvied up into three main categories – direct lift, displacement and gravity. Pumps may be further classified based on their methods of placement. For instance, some popular types of pump types are positive displacement, or PD, impulse, velocity, steam and valve.

Pumps work thanks to some type of mechanism, whether that mechanism is reciprocating or rotary. Some pumps run on electricity, while others may be powered by engines or by the wind. Some pumps are even operated manually. Depending on your application, you may require either a large pump or a small pump. Some pumps are huge, perhaps the size of a room, while others – mainly those used in the medical field – may be microscopic.

Needless to say, but there are lots of different types of pumps available, but knowing which one is the right fit for your application could be the difference between success or failure. So just how do you know what’s the right pump for your application? It starts with knowing a bit about the pumps you’re considering so that you can make the best choice.

What Pump is Right for Me?

So which pump is right for you? The answer may be a bit more complicated than you think. That’s because there are bevy of factors to consider, such as best efficiency point, or BEP. There are also application details and the operational experience of a pump. And then, there’s also the manufacturer to consider, as a high-quality pump will obviously go further than one that is poorly made and fails prematurely. Beyond all this, however, there’s also the all-important aspect of just knowing what pump will serve your application the most appropriately. Here’s a look at some of the most popular types of pumps and why (or why not) they may be a good fit for your application:

  • Centrifugal pumps: This is a popular type of pump that is often administered when dealing with low viscosity liquids and high flow rates. A centrifugal pump is characterized by impellers that rotate with the shaft, creating energy to move – and pressurize – the thin liquids as it moves along. Centrifugal pumps are commonly used in water, sewage and oil applications.
  • Gear pumps: This is another very popular style of pump, characterized by liquid being pumped as it’s passed between two gears. Gear pumps are available in either internal or external varieties. They’re very strong and can be built to fit within tight tolerances. They’re often utilized in the likes of hydraulic equipment, in automotive applications, machine tools and in semi-trucks.
  • Hydraulic pumps: There are a variety of hydraulic pumps, such as hydraulic piston pumps, hydraulic gear pumps, hydraulic screw pumps and hydraulic vane pumps. These pumps work, simply put, by pressurizing hydraulic fluid. Hydraulic pumps are mostly outfitted on hydraulic machines and other applications. These pumps are designed to be tough and long-lasting, so they perform well in demanding environments.
  • Screw pumps: Screw pumps work similar to gear pumps in that they rely on the use of two or more screws to move fluid through a system. Screw pumps are commonly utilized in oil and gas applications.
  • Submersible pumps: Many pumps are actually designed to work under water. These pumps are known as “submersible pumps,” and they work primarily in water applications, installed beneath the surface of the water. Sump pumps are a common example of submersible pumps, though sump pumps may also be pedestal pumps.
  • Vacuum pumps: These pumps are designed to pull a medium out of an area for the purpose of creating a partial vacuum. The mediums that vacuum pumps work with may be either liquid, gas or air.
  • Plastic pumps: While many of the pumps that we’ve listed here are designed for removing basic liquids and gasses, plastic pumps are specifically designed to transport much more hazardous liquids. Because plastic stands up better when exposed to volatile liquids in many cases, the material is especially useful when dealing with these hazardous mediums.

We’ve listed 7 common pumps here, but that’s only a drop in the bucket when it comes to the total number of pumps that there are available. And while the aforementioned are some of the most common types used in industrial applications, there are a bevy of factors that you need to be considering before deciding whether or not a pump is right for your application. Factors such as the type of liquid or gas that is being dealt with, whether the pump will need to be submersed, what the viscosity of the liquid is, how difficult the pump is to reach on a particular application and what type of an environment the pump will be working in.

The Cost of Pumps

As we mentioned earlier in this piece, pumps vary in all kinds of shapes and sizes. Some are large enough to take up an entire room, while others are small enough where they cannot be observed by the naked eye. Based on this, it likely doesn’t surprise you to learn that the prices of these pumps also greatly vary. While some might only cost a few hundred dollars, others may cost several thousand dollars. But being that pumps are critical components to industrial equipment, the lack of an efficiently operating pump can cause downtime and lost profits. So, simply put, a pump is a component that a successful business cannot do without.

But what happens if a pump failed prematurely and you don’t have the money budgeted to acquire a replacement just yet? After all, a pump is something you need – it’s a necessity, not a luxury. If that’s the case, one option is to purchase a previously used pump from a credible source such as Bid on Equipment. By purchasing a used pump from Bid on Equipment, it’s like getting a new pump at a used price.

For more information on pumps, and to browse the selection available at Bid on Equipment, contact the company today.

How to Choose a Heat Exchanger

Just as the name implies, a heat exchanger is a piece of equipment that transfers heat, usually between one or more fluids. Heat exchangers are ideal devices that are commonly used in refrigeration, air conditioning units, power stations, sewage treatment, gas processing and even when it comes to regulating engine cooling in internal combustion engines.

Heat exchangers are classified by how they operate, however they’re typically categorized into three main types – shell and tube heat exchangers, compact heat exchangers and air cooled heat exchangers. The shell and tube heat exchanger type is the most popular, as it’s estimated that over 50 percent of all heat exchangers currently in operation today are of this variety. However, in some applications, it makes more sense to go with one of the other types. Before we get into more concrete advice on how to choose a heat exchanger, it’s first important to note the major differences between the three main types.

Main Types of Heat Exchangers

  • Shell and tube: As we noted, these are the most popular type installed – and they’re also the best understood. They’re versatile in the service that they can provide across a span of applications and work at a wide range of pressures and temperatures. Shell and tube exchangers are also made to last, and are normally able to withstand rugged environments.
  • Compact: Compact heat exchangers are a more affordable option, available in a wide variety of configurations. They enable high heat transfer coefficients (up to 3 times greater than what is permitted by a shell and tube exchanger) and also permit high temperature crosses to be achieved. What’s more is that, fitting to the name, these heat exchangers have a small footprint and are easier to be installed in confined spaces.
  • Air cooled: Air cooled heat exchangers are ideal options for applications that involve cooling water or applications where cooling water is expensive. A big benefit of these types of heat exchangers is that they have low operating costs and normally require less maintenance compared to other models. However, they’re considered the most expensive of all heat exchangers.

Choosing a Heat Exchanger

Now that we’ve covered the main types of heat exchangers, you can probably already get an idea of which one is correct for your application. But it’s also worth noting that just because the shell and tube exchanger is the most popular doesn’t mean that it’s a sure-fire fit for your application. That’s right, the heat exchanger that you choose should largely be dictated by the application. Failure to choose it in this manner can lead to poor plant performance, operation issues and even full-blown equipment failure. But aside from deciding what type of heat exchanger is ideal for your application, there are other factors to consider. Here’s a closer look:

  • Total lifecycle cost: The total lifecycle cost of a product, let alone a heat exchanger, includes the initial purchase price, the installation cost, the operating cost and maintenance costs until the product is not used anymore. So, for instance, if a company decides to purchase a compact heat exchanger because they’re generally cheaper and can be installed easier, the may have to weigh the fact that it may cost more to maintain due to the thin nature of wall thicknesses of compact models. Conversely, while shell and tube heat exchangers are generally more expensive, their rugged build helps them stand up better over time. Air cooled exchangers have a high initial purchase price, but are relatively inexpensive to operate and maintain. These are all factors that must be considered when weighing total lifecycle cost.
  • Application: What role does your heat exchanger need to help perform? Boiling? Condensing? Something else? This is a huge consideration, as the application will, in most cases, dictate the type that you need to best accomplish the task at hand.
  • Operating pressures/temperatures: What type of temperatures and pressures is the heat exchanger intended to work with? That’s a big question to ask, as it will dictate your selection.
  • Durability: Depending on the application, the heat exchanger may have to do its job in some very demanding conditions. If that’s the case, it’s important to consider an exchanger’s durability and reliability. For instance, as we noted above, shell and tube exchangers are usually very rugged in build and able to stand up well in demanding environments, compared to compact exchangers, which are normally made to be less durable.
  • Footprint: What type of space are you working with? Is it a large space? Or do you need something that will fit in a confined space? That will also largely dictate your heat exchanger selection. Compact models are small and able to fit in a more confined area, while air cooled models require a large space. Shell and tube heat exchangers are on the larger side, but generally more versatile in terms of installation space required.
  • Accessibility: How easily will the heat exchanger be able to be reached for the likes of cleaning and maintenance? Despite the reputation of some heat exchangers being more durable than others, routine maintenance is almost always key to longevity.
  • Operating specs: This goes along with application, but it’s important to know exactly what you need your heat exchanger to do, and what temperatures and pressures it needs to be able to withstand in order to do it. Operating specifications are a big reason why the shell and tube heat exchangers are the most popular – they’re able to work across the widest variety of temperatures and pressures.
  • Other considerations: Other considerations on how to choose a heat exchanger include things like the fouling characteristics of the fluid, any utilities that are available (i.e. cooling towers, steam, etc.), potential for future expansions and the impact that the heat exchanger has on the overall environment.

Another big consideration is cost, as heat exchangers aren’t cheap, especially those of the air cooled variety. Though essential to the operations of many facilities worldwide, heat exchangers may put plant managers in a bind if one of their units prematurely fails or needs extensive repair. If replacement isn’t in the budget, what can you do? That’s where a credible site like Bid on Equipment can help, as the service provider collects pre-owned industrial equipment and puts it back on the market for sale. Think of it like getting a functional, like-new product at a used price. It’s these lower price points that can do wonders for a company.

For more information on heat exchangers, and to browse Bid on Equipment’s selection of this equipment, contact us today.

 

The Different Types of Packaging Wrappers

Packaging is essential to protecting, preserving and even marketing goods and brands in markets ranging from food and beverage to household products to agriculture to pharmaceuticals. But if you’re not familiar with the packaging industry, it will probably surprise you to learn that there are many pieces of equipment that help it bring it life. There are the likes of extrusion machines, which work to create film and other materials that are used to create packages. Next comes the pouch-, bag- and paper converting machines that turn the materials into functional packages. Printing and lamination likely also occur throughout the formation of the package, and eventually the finished package will go on to be filled and sealed. Following this step, they may also be wrapped.

Packaging wrappers are typically end-of-line machinery components that are either designed to group products to aid retailers in shelf organization and replenishment (think: bottled water) or to seal the product with a wrapping altogether (think: fresh meat on a tray wrapped in film). They may also be used to wrap pallets and cartons to make packaged goods easier for shipment. In many ways, these packaging wrappers are somewhat of an unsung hero in the packaging industry in that they provide an essential, yet very taken-for-granted function. While most packaging wrappers work with film or shrink wrap, other materials may include foils and paper, though these aren’t as widely used as film.

But while packaging wrappers may sound simple, they are available in a bevy of different styles and varieties. As we noted above, some wrappers are designed to shrink wrap pallets or cartons, while others are designed to group products together to make it easier for stores to stock and re-stock on shelves. With all that being said, this post is designed to take a closer look at the different types of packaging wrappers that are commonly utilized in the industry.

The Various Types of Packaging Wrappers

There are four main types of packaging wrappers that are utilized in the packaging industry. More information on each type is as follows.

  • Flow Wrappers: Flow wrappers are generally high-speed, work with smaller sized packages and products and normally perform more functions than just wrapping and sealing a product. In addition to the wrapping and sealing of a product, flow wrappers also often perform form and fill functions too. While flow wrappers are a general type of wrapper, there are many sub categories of flow wrappers to meet the needs of any packaging facility. Some flow wrappers are more designed for entry level companies that want to speed production, where others are much more specialized. High-speed flow wrappers are also available, and these machines are ideal for larger companies that have stricter timelines to meet. The likes of candy bars, ice cream bars, cookies, muffins and smaller medical devices and industrial goods are all ideal candidates for flow wrappers. Flow wrappers generally come in horizontal and vertical configurations.
  • Over Wrappers: Over wrappers are primarily used to seal fresh food as a means of reducing potential contamination and ensuring long-term freshness. Noting this, over wrappers are typically used with meats, poultry and other foods that are packaged in trays. These over wrappers work with film, stretching it over the tray and then heat sealing it to the bottom of the package to lock in freshness. Aside from locking in freshness and extending the product’s shelf-life, many consumers like the fact that packages wrapped this way enable them to actually see the product they’ll be purchasing or are considering purchasing. Most over wrappers are small enough to fit onto table tops, although floor models are available as well.
  • Shrink Wrappers: Shrink wrap machines work with shrink film. They work by stretching this shrink film over the product – or pallets of products – in question, then apply heat so that the film essentially “shrinks” over whatever it is covering so that it fits tightly to the product. Shrink wrap may be applied to small quantities of product (i.e. to package water bottles or soda together) or it may be used to wrap entire pallets of goods in an effort to keep items together and better protected during transportation. It may also be used to over wrap cartons and boxes. Because of the many different purposes of shrink wrap, shrink wrappers come in various different sizes. Some are small enough to nicely fit into a small, focused space on a factory floor, while others may take up a significantly larger area.
  • Stretch Wrappers: Stretch wrappers are essentially a machine of a larger scale that works with shrink film to wrap pallets and other large objects. As we noted above, one application of shrink film is wrapping the likes of pallets, boxes and cartons to make sure they stand up better to any of the rigors of transportation. That’s the role that stretch wrappers essentially play. For this reason, stretch wrappers are also commonly referred to as “pallet wrappers.” Stretch wrappers come in various configurations. For instance, some employ the use of turntables, while others use straddles, while some move pallets through a ringer to be wrapped. Due to the size of the loads that are serviced by stretch wrappers, these are one of – if not the most expensive – type of wrapper.

 

Though stretch wrappers often have the reputation as being the most expensive of all types of wrappers due to the sizes of product that they service, make no mistake about it when it comes to packaging wrappers – it’s a capital investment. But it’s an important one, as these machines are crucial to the end-of-line packaging procedures. Buy these machines brand new and it could cost tens of thousands of dollars, a price point which can be challenging for either a startup packaging company or a company who didn’t budget for a new purchase on this type of equipment. While buying a brand new wrapper is a viable option, another option is buying a wrapper that’s been previously owned and used. Service providers like Bid on Equipment have a range of previously used wrappers available for a fraction of the price of a new one that work just as well, a big benefit to those packaging companies that don’t have the money to spend on something brand new. By utilizing a credible site like Bid on Equipment, it’s like you’re getting something brand new, but at a used price.

For more information on packaging wrappers, and to browse Bid on Equipment’s inventory of wrappers, visit the company website or contact it today.

April 2016 Trends Report

What has been bringing buyers to Bid on Equipment through the month of April and what are they looking for when they are here? This last month we noticed a large increase in interest inTanks For Sale including: Jacketed Stainless Steel Tanks, Non Stainless Tanks, and Special Use Tanks.
 
Below are the top ten search terms that have shown the largest increases from Internet search traffic this month.

 

Interest in each of these terms has grown 100% – 1500%!

Used Woodworking Tools Conveyors For Sale
Restaurant Equipment For Sale Used Water Tanks For Sale
Used Printing Equipment Used Walk In Coolers
Used Dairy Equipment Used Poultry Equipment For Sale
Bakery Equipment For Sale Used Machine Shop Equipment
 
The top ten overall categories for Bid on Equipment in the last month.
Woodworking Equipment Meat Equipment
Bakery Equipment Conveyors
Machine Shop and Tools Lathes
Dairy Equipment Tanks
Restaurant Equipment Welding and Soldering
 
The top ten overall Manufacturer Pages for Bid on Equipment in the last month.
Graco Combi
Cleaver Brooks Hussman
Bakers Pride Stephan
Multivac Alto Shaam
Waukesha Bosch

To view this email and more news check out the BoE Blog

Are there categories that you would like to see on Bid on Equipment? Or information you would like to see in future emails? Email us at [email protected]

Air Conditioners 101

Whether it be a single-family home, a housing complex or a commercial facility, air conditioning is an important part of keeping residents, employees and customers comfortable, especially in the warm weather months. Air conditioners come in several different varieties, with the most popular being the small window mounted units and the bigger, central air systems.

Many people take air conditioning for granted, only really coming to realizing its importance in helping them feel comfortable when there’s a problem with their unit or when they realize that their unit may require replacement. But have you ever really thought about how air conditioners work, whether its a window unit, or room air conditioner, or a central air conditioner? In this post, we’ll get into the basics of air conditioning, how air conditioning units work and briefly get into more depth regarding some of the different types of units available.

How Air Conditioners Work

Air conditioners work similarly to another common household appliance – refrigerators. Except instead of cooling a small area of space as a refrigerator does, air conditioners are designed to cool an entire home or facility. Here’s a closer look at how an air conditioner works, thanks largely in part to three main components – the evaporator, the condenser and the pump:

  • The value of the evaporator: The evaporator is a crucial piece in any air conditioning unit. Simply put, the evaporator is essentially just cold indoor coil. The evaporator works together with a condenser to cool a home and release any captured heat outside of the facility that is being cooled. Condensers are the opposite of evaporators – they are hot outdoor coil.
  • The pump: Also commonly referred to as the “compressor,” the pump’s main function is moving refrigerant gas between the aforementioned condenser and evaporator, forcing it through the copper wire tubing that connects the two air conditioning components. It also helps it move within the fins in the coils. The refrigerant then is converted to a liquid and is eventually evaporated in the evaporator coil. This, in turn, leads to heat being removed from the home – causing the home or the facility to become cooler.
  • Outside of the home or facility, any heat captured is removed through the condenser, which works to convert refrigerant into a liquid state, which can then be moved back into the house to continue to perform its cooling.

All About BTUs

“BTU” stands for “British thermal units” – and this just so happens to be the unit of measurement that defines an air conditioner’s performance output. Specifically, a BTU is defined as the amount of heat that is necessary to raise a pound of water by 1 degree Fahrenheit. Generally speaking, larger facilities will need units with higher BTUs than smaller homes and facilities. For example, an air conditioning unit rated 10,000 BTU should be adequate for a single-family home that’s about 1,200 to 1,500 square feet. That’s because it has the capability of cooling 10,000 pounds of water, which equates to about 1,200 gallons, of water 1 degree in one hour. A larger, 2,000 square foot home will likely need an air conditioner with more BTUs – perhaps about 60,000.

As we mentioned, the size of the facility that you want to cool will dictate the type of air conditioner you need and what amount of BTUs you’ll want it to have so that all occupants can stay comfortable during the dog days of summer.

Air Conditioning Issues and Maintenance

When cared for properly, an air conditioner should last for about 15 years. But with that being said, there are many different factors that can greatly shorten this average lifespan. Here’s a look at some common issues that plague air conditioners:

  • Dirty coils
  • Irregular refrigerant levels

These two aforementioned factors may not only lead to your air conditioning unit failing to work up to par, but they can also cause utility bills to escalate. What’s more is that these factors can also cause the compressor component to work harder on your air conditioning unit, potentially even causing it to fail if the problem isn’t addressed in a timely manner.

Here’s a look at some other potential issues that can plague your air conditioner:

  • Leaks: Remember, the evaporator and condenser are connected by hoses and tubing. And when you’re dealing with hoses and tubing, there’s always the potential for leaks. So check these hoses periodically to ensure that refrigerant is being transported properly.
  • Air filter: The air filter can become very dirty in your air conditioning unit, which can cause the unit to work harder. That’s why it’s recommended that you change the filter at least once every month, especially in the summer months when it’s often in use.
  • Vegetation: This issue is perhaps the easiest to resolve – keeping vegetation at bay. With that in mind, make sure any bushes or trees are at least 2 feet away from the air conditioning unit so airflow has the chance to proceed as intended.
  • Preventative Maintenance: While this comes at a cost, it’s never a bad idea to have a professional out to give your air conditioning unit a tune up every spring. An HVAC contractor will look over all of the components and make adjustments and repairs as necessary to make sure it’s operating up to snuff. Preventative maintenance is especially important for homes or commercial facilities that have large, expensive central air units, as it’s important to protect that investment.

Types of Air Conditioners

As we previously noted, the two main types of air conditioners are window units, or room air conditioners, and central air conditioners. Here’s a brief overview on each:

  • Room Air Conditioners: These are usually mounted in windows and designed to specifically cool a confined room or small area. Unlike central air conditioners, which use ducts to distribute the air, room units use fans. Generally, these units can be plugged into a standard electrical outlet.
  • Central Air Conditioners: Usually the condenser is outside of the house and the evaporator is inside the home in the air handler component of the unit. These units run air through ducts, dispersing it throughout the entire home or facility.

Air conditioners are a vital piece to any facility, and they’re not a cheap replacement. That’s why it can make sense to either purchase used parts or a used unit if you’re ever in a bind and need to acquire such on a more affordable level. For more information on air conditioners, and to browse Bid on Equipment’s selection of units and components, contact the company today.

How to Put Together a Carbonated Beverage Line

Carbonated beverages are unquestionably a big hit here in the United States. Whether it’s soda or beer, consumers love them. And when there’s demand for such beverages, it only makes sense that manufacturers continue to churn out the products.

Simply put, carbonated beverages are those that contain carbon dioxide dissolved in water, which thereby creates a fizzing and bubbling sensation in the particular drink. While carbonation can occur naturally, when it comes to carbonated beverages like sparkling water, beer and soda, the carbonization is completed artificially in an industrial plant. Consumers enjoy carbonated beverages for the fizzing taste and manufacturers enjoy making such drinks because they’re easy to distribute and the carbonization gives such beverages a long shelf life.

But, believe it or not, there’s a lot that goes into a carbonated beverage line, from carbonatorequipment to filling equipment, in order to ensure that consumers get the beverages that they enjoy so much. This post will cover some of the basics behind a carbonated beverage line, and what you need to know about much of the equipment that makes these types of drinks possible. Here’s a closer look:

Equipment in a Nutshell

As we noted in the opening, there is a lot of equipment that is needed for a carbonated beverage line. This equipment variety consists of things like mixing and blending units, sugar dissolving equipment, carbonators, homogenizers, pasteurizers, heat treatment machines, fillers and cappers, labeling equipment and packing equipment. While this line can be extensive, especially when you consider the packaging components that make the distribution of the beverages viable, each piece of equipment plays a unique role. We’ll cover some of the more notable pieces of equipment on a carbonated beverage line in the section below.

Key Pieces of Equipment

  • Mixing and Blending Units: Sodas come in all sorts of different types of flavors – and it seems that new ones are always coming out. Yes, there’s no shortage of mixing and blending when it comes to creating carbonated beverages, and this is a task that’s often completed very early in the creation of a beverage. Normally, this mixing and blending is carried out in a continuous motion.
  • Storage Tanks: A carbonated beverage line is likely to need several storage tanks, which help carry out several key processes, such as coagulation, filtration and chlorination. These processes are all designed to remove impurities in the water mixture that’s involved in the beverage making process. Keep in mind that carbonated water makes up over 90 percent of what is in a soft drink, so the processes that make the water pure and viable for this process cannot be underestimated.
  • Carbonators: While mixing and blending equipment help create the flavor, it’s the carbonatorsthat fittingly add the carbonation. Essentially, they are what makes a drink a carbonated beverage. The main component of a carbonator is the carbonation tank, which pumps fresh water and carbon dioxide at high pressures. This is then diffused and the water absorbs the gas into a solution. Carbonators are arguably the most important component in the beverage line – they’re also pieces of equipment that require a lot of maintenance in order to continue to perform up to their full potential.
  • Carbo Coolers: Carbo coolers are similar to carbonators, except they also cool the liquid beverage at the same time that they carbonate the beverage.
  • Filling and Sealing Machines: While carbonators might get all of the glory in the beverage line for taking a liquid and actually making it a carbonated one, filling and sealing machines help a beverage stay that way. And that’s why filling and packaging is so important when it comes to carbonated beverages, because if it isn’t transferred into either bottles or cans at very high flow rates and then sealed immediately, it will lose its carbonation and become “flat.” That’s why containers, whether they be bottles or cans, are normally immediately sealed with pressure-resistant closures.
  • Labeling: When it comes to soft drinks and beer, packaging and labeling is very important in order to convey the brand. And while labeling is a big part of the tail end of a carbonated beverage line, it’s worth noting that it is not without its challenges. Labels for such beverages are usually made of either plastic film or paper, but in order to ensure the integrity of the label and that it doesn’t fail, the bottles or cans must be brought back up to room temperature to prevent condensation and ensure that the label will stick. Because they’re often cooled during the carbonation step, cans and bottles are usually hosed down with warm water to bring their temperatures up. Only then can the labels be applied.
  • Palletizing Accessories: After the beverage has been filled and sealed in either a bottle or can, then it must be distributed. To get the product to distributors, companies usually pack them onto trays or pallets to make shipping easier.

Beverage Line Equipment: A Big Capital Investment

We just highlighted some of the components that are involved in a carbonated beverage line, but make no mistake about it, there is quite a bit more that is involved in such an operation. Another similarity between most of the equipment that you’ll need on a carbonated beverage line is the high cost of it. Yes, such equipment isn’t cheap, with pieces ranging from several thousand dollars to tens of thousands of dollars to even hundreds of thousands of dollars.

Noting the high cost of equipment, this can unquestionably put manufacturers in a bind if a piece of equipment were to fail unexpectedly. When this occurs, there is a decision to be made – buy a brand new piece of equipment for market value or buy a used and refurbished piece of equipment that works like new but is a bit cheaper. There’s no real right or wrong answer, just situations to be aware of. And for the company that didn’t budget for a new piece of equipment, the used route may be the ideal way to go, especially if its acquired from a quality, credible source like Bid on Equipment.

For more information on Bid on Equipment, and to browse the company’s library of used and refurbished equipment for a carbonated beverage line, contact the company today.

 

March 2016 Trends

What has been bringing buyers to Bid on Equipment through the month of March and what are they looking for when they are here? This last month we noticed a large increase in interest inUsed Fabrication Equipment including:Saws and Shears, Welding and Soldering Equipment, andRiveters and Fastening Machines.
 

Below are the top ten search terms that have shown the largest increases from Internet search traffic this month.

Interest in each of these terms has grown 100% – 2000%!

Ice Cream Freezer For Sale Used Restaurant Equipment
Milling Machines For Sale Used Metal Fabrication Equipment
Used Water Heaters Strapping Machines For Sale
Used Air Compressors For Sale Brewery Equipment For Sale
Ice Cream Equipment For Sale Used Machine Shop Equipment
 
The top ten overall categories for Bid on Equipment in the last month.
Woodworking Equipment Meat Equipment
Bakery Equipment Conveyors
Machine Shop and Tools Lathes
Dairy Equipment Tanks
Restaurant Equipment Welding and Soldering
 
The top ten overall Manufacturer Pages for Bid on Equipment in the last month.
Bridgeport Combi
Cleaver Brooks Hussman
Bakers Pride Trane
Flexicon Alto Shaam
Waukesha Bosch