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Seven Tips for Keeping Your Packaging Line Running at Peak Performance


Packaging is a time-sensitive world. Minutes matter. Less than optimum performance and interruptions – scheduled or unscheduled – increase costs and reduce production efficiencies. Here are seven tips to improve production and keep your packaging line running at peak performance.


  1. Proper installation and setup. Optimum performance begins with precise, accurate installation and setup.  Work with knowledgeable vendors who want you to understand your machines as well as they do. Look for high quality technical experts who are experienced problem solvers and committed to achieving your performance goals and providing the best solutions for your application.


  1. Keep your line clean and organized. Well-maintained machines run faster and break down less frequently. Be prepared for changeovers by having change parts ready near the machine. An organized work area reduces down time, increases efficiency, and creates a safer environment for your team. Explore storage systems that help you achieve these goals.


  1. Regular maintenance and issue documentation. Preventative maintenance reduces the frequency of breakdowns and helps prevent product or machine damage. It helps ensure that your machine continues to run at peak performance. Record the reason for production interruptions and how long it took to repair. Recording a history of downtime and causes helps build or improve maintenance schedules and prevent future occurrences. Connecting downtime costs with problem areas helps you understand your ROI and focus on efficiency improvements.


  1. Keep quality parts in stock. Adequate stock of potential wear parts helps you adhere to a regular maintenance program and prevent problems before they occur. Quality, precision-crafted change parts are easier to install and adjust. They perform better, last longer and help reduce the possibility of product or machine damage.


  1. Repeatable Changeovers. To achieve the lowest possible downtime and optimum performance, changeovers need to be simple, accurate, and repeatable. Documented, automated, or easy adjust processes and systems improve speed and consistency. Components and systems designed for rapid, tool-less changeover without the need for operator adjustments can reduce changeover time from hours to minutes, eliminate errors and ensure accurate, repeatable settings aligned to your product. Septimatech has helped leading companies worldwide achieve fast, accurate, repeatable changeovers with its numerous Machine Productivity and Line Adjustment Systems.


  1. Train your employees.  Know your machines and train your team. Document proper setup and changeover procedures and make sure staff are following them. This creates a baseline and helps to prevent shortcuts that may reduce performance, cause premature wear, or machine damage. Establishing 5S procedures increases efficiency and focus on areas for improvement. 


  1. Communication. Encourage communication among operators and service personnel between shifts to expose any challenges that are currently being experienced on the line. Sharing information helps prevent downtime and faster identification of problems if they do occur. 
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Kimberley Rawson
December 12, 2017
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