Every engineer or manufacturing professional runs into spoilt materials every now and then. Maybe your employees keep stashing up delicate parts and products in the same container, just to save space. Or perhaps they’re constantly forced to store materials in a moisture-full corner to pave way for foot traffic. Whatever the case may be, there’s a better, more efficient way of storing such products.
Keep reading to discover the top tips for properly storing and protecting some well-known manufacturing materials.
1. Keep O-Rings Under the Right Room Conditions
You can avoid that by storing your o-rings and o-rings with fittings under the right room conditions right from the outset. Seal them in a moisture-proof bag where the ambient relative humidity doesn’t exceed 75 percent. Stick to the temperature threshold as well, and be sure to keep your o-rings from direct sunlight exposure. Direct sources of heat such as radiators and boilers are an o-ring’s worst enemy, so keep the two away from each other.
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2. Hazardous Materials Don’t Need Any Air
Common knowledge dictates that hazardous materials be kept away from ignition sources, yet many people blatantly disregard such warnings. Chemicals are a crucial ingredient in manufacturing, but if they’re not stored properly, engineers handling them risk not just destructive infernos, but also burns, injuries, and even death. The first proactive step would be to keep hazardous and flammable substances away from fire sources, but there’s more to do.
Keep storage areas under lock and key, as greater access means a greater risk of an unfortunate event happening for your manufacturing materials. Make a point of understanding the chemistry behind the materials you’re storing together as well. In case of a spill or a leak, some of them could explode or react intensively and destructively. For example, when nitric acid mixes with organic materials like alcohol, the reaction is often explosive and could damage a lot in the way of equipment and premises. You’ll want to keep any incompatible products you have in separate containers or rooms.
3. Films Are Best Kept in Cool Rooms
Films tend to shrink prematurely and become brittle if exposed to extremely low temperatures, so you’ll want to store them in the coolest areas of your facility. These spots are typically close to the floor and away from high-traffic doors or areas that receive too much sunlight.
4. Putting Sheet Metal on the Floor Is a No-No
Sheet metal requires a lot of work and thought during the storage phase. For better storage results, avoid putting your sheet metal on the floor. Depending on how heavy each sheet weighs, moving it can prompt a long, tedious and potentially dangerous activity. Edges and sharp corners can result in cuts and abrasions.
When you store your sheet metal on the floor of a hot warehouse, you’ll also put your employees in danger of incurring skin burns when they touch it. That’s too much risk to bear for one material, especially considering the perks of putting it on the higher, cooler ground.
5. Moisture Shouldn’t Be Entertained Around Electronic Parts
Given the advent of technology in recent years, it’s no surprise that cutting-edge electronic parts are quickly making their way into the manufacturing industry. For instance, the healthcare and automotive sectors have both made Printed Circuit Boards (PCBs) a crucial part of their manufacturing processes, and that’s great. The real challenge, however, is to maintain the quality and safety of these parts when in storage.
Unsurprisingly, moisture is electronic parts’ biggest nemesis, and for obvious reasons. Oxidation thrives in such conditions, causing these components to rust and eventually be rendered useless. By keeping your electronic parts in ultra-dry areas or cabinets, you’ll ensure their longevity and usability in the short and long term. Another possibility is to put them in vacuum-packed, moisture-proof bags.