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5 Facts about packaging tape

Warehousing Made Easy Series Part 2: Packaging Tape


The Packaging Tape "How To" Guide

Not all tapes are created equal!  The consequences of using the wrong tape are frustrating and costly. At best, it involves time-consuming re-packaging and, at worst, lost goods. Because ABL is here to serve you we offer you not only quality supplies but also important advice. We want to be sure you know that brown or clear are not your only options when deciding what tape you should buy!

Packaging tape is a warehouse essential that can drive you
crazy if it’s not doing the job right. Get the lowdown, and save time and money by using our 5 simple tips below to make sure you are getting the right packaging tape.


1. Use the right tape for the job.
Packaging tape ain’t  just packaging tape. You need to use the right tape for the job. Brown or clear coloured backing affects nothing but the presentation of your goods. It’s the quality of the tape’s backing and type of adhesive that counts.

  • New cardboard boxes and general purpose applications - Use a tape with a synthetic rubber adhesive like Tempest HR or 3M 370 for best results. Vibac PP30 is a natural rubber adhesive which is suitable for many general applications.

  • Plastics, recycled board and colder conditions - For cooler conditions, or for taping plastics (like bubble wrap) and some recycled cartons a tape with an acrylic adhesive is best like Tempest AT. Speciality freezer tape 3M 311 is very best for these conditions.

  • Export or heavy duty requirements -Consider a premium tape (like Tempest HR Premium)  for critical applications. This gives the reassurance of thicker backing and thick, aggressive adhesive.
 
2. THE (Truly Essential) Trick to Making It Stick.
All packaging tapes are activated by pressure!

Make sure that your taping technique is up to scratch by running your hand firmly and swiftly over the tape after it has been dispensed onto the surface. This wets out the adhesive and activates it, giving it the best chance of grabbing onto the surface.

This is the one “NEVER FORGET IT” habit to develop to ensure your goods are taped securely.

3. Dispense It Easily.
Save time and use a dispenser for all your packaging tapes. Several styles are available depending on the job you’re doing, and where.  Pistol grips are best for most general work, but if you are working in tight spaces the teardrop dispensers are very handy.

Can’t stand the screech of tape any longer? Try “going quiet” with a smooth rolling low noise pistol grip tape dispenser and be surprised at the difference it makes in your warehouse.  Sanity!

Don't be fooled by cheap or free dispensers that lock you into an irregular core size of tape. Be sure that the dispenser you have holds a 75mm core, which is the industry standard across all major reputable brands. A 75mm core means you can easily interchange between brands/types of tape if required.
 
4.Double Duty Customisation.
Go through a lot of tape? Maximise your branding by considering printed tapes.

For a cent or two extra per box, a custom printed packaging tape can save you time and re-enforce your branding, call to action and give a professional unity to your packages. Your logo, a warning message (such as FRAGILE etc to save double taping), and web address or re-order phone number can all be printed on your tape. 

Custom tapes also help reduce pilferage as your printed tape is impossible for thieves to match if the seal is broken on your packages. If you would like a quotation on custom printed tape (buy as little as two boxes!) please contact us here.

5.Troubleshoot the conditions.
The weather or the conditions in which you tape affects which tape you should be using.

  • Summer Woes? Many tapes struggle with hot, humid conditions (like here in Queensland in February). This is because the moisture content in cardboard affects the stick of the tape. Some of this is unavoidable and affects all tapes.  However, over the years we have found many people have good results with a natural rubber adhesive like that in PP30 at this time of year.
  • Winter/Refridgerated Woes? For freezer work, boxes should be taped outside the freezer/refridgerator and then placed into the cold conditions. Use a specific cold temperature tape like 3M 311 for outstanding results. In cold conditions, a tape with an acrylic adhesive will give best results.
  • Storage - Try to never store tape on the top racking right next to the dusty, hot warehouse roof, it can affect the adhesive.


 

Using the right supplies for the job helps to save you time and money. It also helps to avoid embarrassing situations with clients - no more ruined deliveries because of poor packaging tape.  Now that you’ve read our advice and are armed with the knowledge, you can select the tapes that are right for your workplace situation. (Click here to see our full packaging tape range)

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