What Heat Shrink Wrap To Use?

The shrink wrap products we sell include: PVC and polyolefin centerfold shrink wrap, shrink tubing, shrink bags, and perforated flat shrink wrap. All of these products come in different widths, thicknesses, and lengths.  To someone who is not familiar with shrink wrap and the variety of types, it can be overwhelming.

The majority of this entire blog has been dedicated to educating and informing our clients and potential clients of the variety of shrink wrap and packaging products available and using them properly and efficiently. This specific post will be dedicated to a specific set of problems a client was having and how the proper adjustments assisted in efficiency and a better overall shrink wrap experience.

We recently had a call from someone using small boxes for packaging their products and then shrink wrapping the box to help preserve the contents in it. It was a small scale operation not doing many boxes per day, but they were still having problems with efficiency.

Issue #1 The first efficiency problem they were experiencing was using an impulse sealer with a centerfold shrink wrap. L-bar sealers are by far more efficient and a better option for centerfold shrink wrap. The L-bar sealer allows sealing for all open sides of the centerfold wrap.

Issue #2 The impulse sealer being used was a flat wire impulse sealer. Flat wire sealers have their purpose, but not ideal for what they were being used for. Flat wire sealers seal the film, but do not trim excess film. They were having to seal all open sides of the film, then trim the excess film with scissors.

Issue #3 They were also using a lighter gauged PVC shrink wrap and experiencing seals opening up during the packaging process.

Issue #4 Another issue they were experiencing was ballooning from the shrink wrap. Once the seals were made and heat was applied the shrink wrap would balloon up and trap air.

Based on the information given to us we were able to help determine some solutions to the problems they were experiencing and offer other potential options.

Solution #1 There are a couple of different options to choose from with the first issue they were having. The first option would be to upgrade to an L-bar sealer. These vary in price depending on the type of output desired. The other option that is possibly cheaper if it works is opting for shrink bags. Shrink bags only have one open end and work great with an I-bar sealer.

Solution #2 The only option for this issue is to purchase a round wire impulse sealer. The flat wire sealers are great when you use them with shrink tubing or shrink bags and you want to separate the bag or tubing with a seal and not cut excess film. The round wire sealer is what they needed for sealing and trimming in one motion to help stay efficient.

Solution #3 A couple of options could be considered to address the third issue they were experiencing. A thicker shrink film could help to form a stronger seal. The other option is to have a thicker sealing wire on the impulse sealer. A thicker seal will be stronger and possibly allow the use of the same size of film without the busted seals.

Solution #4 Most all shrink wrap products experience ballooning without proper air vents. There are shrink wrap sealers that offer a hole punch to provide a vent hole on centerfold shrink wrap as it comes off the roll. Another option is using shrink bags with vent holes.

What did they do?

For the first issue they decided they were not producing enough products yet to justify a new L-bar system. They decided to use a shrink wrap bags with vent holes.

They did buy a new round wire impulse sealer. This enabled them to cut and seal the open end in one motion. It was also a fairly economic choice only costing approx. $150.

The new round wire sealer helped to address the third issue they were having with busted seals. They chose a round wire sealer with a thicker sealing wire to help gain a stronger seal.

The bags with vent holes helped to address the ballooning issue they kept experiencing and allow air to escape the film after heat was applied.

There are a variety of issues that can arise when shrink wrapping products. We like to think we can help with most issues, if you have any questions about any issues you may be having with your shrink products feel free to call us. You can reach us at 1-800-441-5090 or visit our website at www.uspackagingandwrapping.com

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