If you’re looking to enhance the packaging process at your facility, stretch wrap machines are a great way to do it. However, choosing the right stretch wrap machine should be a careful consideration for any business. There are several factors to consider when making your choice.
Remember, there are two ways to apply stretch wrap, by hand and by machine. Hand wrapping is labor intensive and slow. Manual effort cannot effectively stretch the film. This has negative consequences on holding strength and unit stabilization. To increase stabilization, personnel often overwrap the pallet, using more material than necessary. Workers are prone to injuries from tripping, falls, and repetitive motion.
Stretch wrap machines allow for obtaining the highest performance from the stretch wrap, while eliminating the negatives of hand wrapping.
The more the material is stretched, the lower the usage and the greater the savings. Other advantages include lower labor costs, greater load stabilization, and less damage to pallet loads during transportation. Material and labor savings, alone, can justify the initial cost of a machine in about a year.
Consider the following when you start the process of determining if automating is right for your facility:
- How many loads are you currently wrapping and how many loads do you foresee wrapping?
- How are you currently wrapping and how many people does it take?
- What types of loads will you wrap? Will the loads all be boxes, irregular shapes, fragile, etc.? Are the loads heavy, light, stable, unstable, etc.?
- Are you experiencing shipping damages? If so, do you know what is causing the damage?
- Are you operating multiple shifts?
If you are wrapping 15 or more loads per day, it’s more cost-effective to use a machine than to wrap by hand. At that level, machines justify their costs by reducing manual labor expense and the possibility of injuries.
When stretch wrap is applied by machine:
- Production rates increase & labor costs decrease
- Injuries decrease
- Wrapping is consistent and optimized
- Quality is increased
- Less material is consumed
In addition to increased productivity and decreased liability, most machines pull the stretch wrap at least 200% before applying it to the load. This results, not only in optimizing its load force capabilities, but also in legitimate savings of up to 50% of material costs.
To help you learn more about stretch wrap machines and whether automating is right for your company, IPS Packaging is offering a FREE eBook to help you justify the decision to automate the stretch wrapping process.