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The filling machine might be the most expensive piece of capital equipment in your bottling plant, but vent tubes can make you or break you. An improperly sized or fitted bottling filler tube can cause multiple issues that will either slow or shut down production, costing thousands of dollars and backing up orders. Here are five things to watch for when evaluating your filling machine’s vent tube performance:

Inappropriate fill heights. Consistency on your filling line, down to a tenth of a gram, helps maintain profit margins and contributes to your brand reputation. Overfill and you lose money. Underfill and customers are unhappy. It doesn’t take long with 400-600 bottles per minute per line for an inappropriate fill height to ruin a run, create a mess and a heap of waste. The only way to fix it is to shut down the line to figure out which component of the machine is causing the problem.

Damaged glass bottles. When you’re filling glass bottles, the wrong vent tube can break the bottle or create a glass shard inside the bottle that can harm a customer. Again, the only fix is the shut down the line and perform 100% inspection of every bottle during that fill session. The damage to a single bottle might be minor, but the process of shutting down is a major setback and loss.

Flying plastic bottles. Plastic bottles might not develop shards or break because of the wrong vent tube, but they can get knocked off the pedestal or topple an entire line of bottles, creating a huge maintenance nightmare.

Crashing the filling machine. The wrong bottling filler tube can get blocked or seize up, creating a domino effect within the filling machine causing potentially costly repairs to capital equipment.

Rush expenses for replacements. Measuring, ordering and keeping a stock of properly sized vent tubes on hand can save the expense of a rush order. In an emergency, we can expedite the manufacture of a rush order for vent tubes. In addition, we can calculate the cost of expedited air shipment for replacement vent tubes, a situation that has occurred when a bottling line has crashed. Just note that a larger initial order can help spare this type of expense. These types of situations help illustrate how much more costly it is to have a bottle filling line shut down than it is to have the right bottling filler tube and proper supply, on hand.

At Arthur Products, vent tube fillers are custom made, from the raw materials that enter the plant, through the design phase to final output. However, it is always better to plan ahead. Give us a call to find out which bottle filling vent tube style, format and quantity will best suit your machinery at 800-322-0510.

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