Different filling machines use different mechanical methods to fill containers with the correct amount of liquid in a clean and efficient manner. There are four main filling machine principles – gravity filling, overflow filling, piston filling and pump filling. While these filling machines can all handle a range of products, especially with customization, the best system for your business depends on the characteristics of the liquid you are packaging.
For lower viscosity or frothy liquids, gravity filling is often a simple and economical solution. This filling principle operates by storing the liquid above the bottles to be filled and allowing gravity to draw the liquid down. For this to work smoothly, the liquid has to be free-flowing with a consistent viscosity, and it should not have any particles that could obstruct its movement through the machine. This system works on the volumetric filling principle, dispensing the same amount of liquid each time using a timed fill.
This filling machine principle is well-suited to a wide range of industries, including food and beverage, specialty chemical and cosmetics and personal care, so long as the product is free-flowing and of a low enough viscosity.
The overflow filling principle stands out for its ability to fill bottles to the same level, even if that results in slight variations in volume. For retail products packaged in clear containers, this visually-appealing evenness is an important way to appeal to your customers. Without this system, slight variations in the interior shape of your containers could make it look as though your products are filled unevenly, even when they are not. Your customers may reject a bottle that looks as though it contains less than the others, which could result in unsold units. Maintaining an even fill-line prevents this perception, while also looking more professional.
Overflow filling works best with thin to medium viscosity products, and this method can fill bottles at a fast rate. Any leftover product left in the filling tubes is pushed back into the storage tank to prevent waste.
Piston filling systems are suitable for liquids ranging from thin viscosities to thick. They are also able to process semi-solids and liquids with particulates. They pump product into containers in very precise amounts, delivered from a bulk tank that can also be configured with a buffer tank utilizing a level-sensing float, a manifold with directdraw, or recirculation methods. Apex offers different models of piston fillers suitable for high-volume industrial needs, startups seeking more economical models, and table-top semi-automatic enterprises. We can also customize your equipment to make filling even more efficient, such as adding a heated hopper to a tabletop piston filler to warm up thicker liquids, making them flow more easily.
Piston fillers are especially well-suited for higher-cost liquids that need to be dispensed in precise amounts with little waste, such as pharmaceuticals, essential oils, and THC and CBD tinctures.
Pump fillers are the powerhouses that can move even the thickest products, including those that drip, stretch or contain large chunks. But while pump fillers are known for working well with substances like honey, salsa or car wax, they can also handle watery, low viscosity products just as well. This type of system also permits an easier change between different fill volumes, which is more convenient for a single operator who needs to fill containers of different sizes.
As with piston fillers, pump fillers are available in industrial models as well as semi-automatic tabletop systems for new and growing enterprises.
All of the filling principle systems we offer can be adapted for sanitary, corrosive, flammable and hazardous products. In addition, we have the expertise and dedication to work with you to find solutions that meet the specific needs of your business. Call us and let us know what type of product you need to fill, and we will help you find the best system for making your business more profitable.
Let Apex Help You
Apex offers all of our clients customized solutions to their filling needs. To learn which filling principle is best for your business, call us at 219-575-7493 or visit our page here.