What’s The Problem?
Anyone who has spent any time working on a production line knows the scenario: The line is running along just fine when all of a sudden, a problem arises. On the surface, it may seem that the equipment is malfunctioning. However, the root of the problem usually requires taking a deeper look in to what is actually happening.
The first thing that needs to be looked at is any changes that happened from when things were running well. When working with extruders, systems often experience troubles with some type of change in ingredients. If a shaped product is being run, with a formulation of multiple ingredients, the problem could be that a new load of one particular ingredient has changed. Increases in fat and fiber levels in an ingredient are usually the culprit when it comes to loss of the quality in a shaped product.
As far as soybeans go, the malfunction is usually a change in the moisture content from one load to the next. When it comes to soybeans, a spike in temperature or amperage could be caused by particle separation when the level of product in the bin gets low.
In any process that uses water injection, one thing to look for is changes in the incoming water pressure. Foreign material can always cause problems, from plugging nosecones and die plates to getting wrapped around feeder augers or agitators.
When a problem occurs, taking the machine apart and finding nothing can be very frustrating and time-consuming. Checking out the ingredients used in the extrusion process first can save a lot of time, work, and stress.
When a problem arises on a production line, it is instinctual to think that the complication lies in the equipment. However, many times another factor is at the root of the cause, like a change in ingredients. When working with machinery, it is important to have support from the manufacturer of the equipment. Insta-Pro is always willing and able to help find the cause of any problems that may be occurring. Just head over to the “Contact Us” page on our website, and we will be ready to assist you.