Seal Integrity Tester
It's a fact: food and consumer products are not safe unless properly sealed. One of the most important aspects of packaging is ensuring that it keeps the contents safe and secure. If packets can get damaged or punctured it completely defeats the whole point of them and also exposes the consumers to several health risks. Thankfully, there are seal integrity testers that are commonly used to assure high-quality packaging. But how much of a role do seal integrity testers play in production and what is the big deal about them?
What is a seal integrity tester?
A seal integrity tester is a device used to test the integrity of the seal on a package. It is popularly used as a requisite quality control method. Seals are used to close packages and ensure that their contents remain safe and secure. Hence, seal integrity testers can help manufacturers determine whether their seals keep their products safe while they are distributed to customers.
Furthermore, the goal of a seal integrity tester is to measure the force required to break a seal as a quality control method. This information can then be used to determine whether there are leaks or defects in seals and gaskets. Seal integrity testers are used in many industries, including pharmaceutical and food processing. All in all, it all ties into ensuring the safety of consumers.
The importance of package seal integrity
As a consumer, you probably don't think twice about a product’s package seal when you open it. But in reality, it's a part of your safety and well-being. Here are a few reasons why package seal integrity is important:
Protects products from contamination: Containers are often used for packaging food, pharmaceuticals, and other products that need to be kept free from contamination. If there is leakage, the product could become contaminated and unusable. Package seals prevent these by providing an airtight barrier to protect the content from contamination.
Ensures that customers get what they expect: Whether it's a bottle of water or a canister of coffee, the package seal is an important aspect of any product. The customer relies on the seal to be functional when they buy the product.
Prevents tampering: The seal also serves as a sign of quality and security for products that are susceptible to tampering, such as cosmetics and pharmaceuticals.
Improves shelf life: In addition to protecting against theft and damage during shipping, package seals keep moisture out of the box and provide a barrier against dust and other contaminants that can cause damage or shorten the shelf life of products.
Helps maintain hygiene standards: If a package is breached or damaged, there's a risk of contamination. This could lead to health hazards, which could result in a loss of business and brand reputation. This is why product package sealing is the first line of defense for products.
How does the seal integrity tester work?
Package seal integrity testing is a critical inspection that can be performed on a wide variety of packages for medical devices and pharmaceuticals. A secure seal test procedure is pretty simple when you follow the instructions. Depending on the type of seal being tested, you can either pressurize the system or remove air from it. Different procedures are followed by integrity seal testers, including;
●Bubble leak testing
●Altitude simulation testing
●Dry chamber test
Bubble Leak Testing: Bubble leak testing is a simple visual test that ensures the integrity of your packaging and adheres to the ASTM D3078 testing standard. The process involves injecting air into the product with an air compressor and then listening for air leaks by applying an ear to the pipe or opening it to the atmosphere. If bubbles are heard, this indicates that there is a leak in the system. The bubble leak test can be used on new seals, as well as existing ones, to ensure that they are performing properly.
Altitude Simulation Testing: This procedure for package integrity testing simulates the extreme pressure changes a package may experience during transport. It is especially important for products traveling long distances via aircraft or mountainous terrain with altitude changes. The test is performed by exhausting a gas (usually nitrogen) into the sealed container and pressurizing it to simulate flying at high altitudes. The seal integrity tester then measures the amount of leakage through the seal for a given time.
The result allows you to calculate how long it would take for your seals to fail under normal operating conditions, which gives you an idea of how long they’ll last under extreme conditions like those found in an aircraft cabin where there’s plenty of moisture and condensation present.
Dry Chamber Test: The use of a dry vacuum chamber to perform a seal integrity test is known as a "dry test." It is performed in a leak detector tank without any liquid, and it is mostly used in conjunction with other tests. The process involves introducing a vacuum into a chamber and then observing if there is any leakage in the seal.
This method is often preferred because it does not require any cleaning after use, as you do with other methods. Also, the dry chamber test best suits liquid-containing packages, such as condiment sachets or bottles with lug-style or threaded caps.
Seal-Check seal integrity tester for food and pharmaceutical industries
The food and pharmaceutical industries require that the packages they use meet certain quality standards, including seal integrity. With the industry growing rapidly, it’s important for producers to ensure their packaging meets regulatory standards. Quality assurance teams use the seal checker to test seals on food and drug packages before they are shipped out.
The importance of having a good seal integrity tester cannot be overstated—if a product fails due to a faulty seal, it could result in serious health problems for those who consume it and severe consequences for the company that distribute them. It is common to hear about lawsuits and company closures due to public health and safety violations. As a result, seal testers are critical to every manufacturing process and are widely recognized by official bodies.