Throwback Thursday: Justifying Investment in Cleaning Innovations

For many shops, one of the most difficult aspects of implementing new mold cleaning technology is justifying the purchase, and this is still a challenge today. Here is a throwback article that covers the top six benefits of dry ice blasting for injection molds and the value of job tracking the overall impact of cleaning and maintenance.

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For many organizations, one of the most difficult aspects of implementing new cleaning technology is justifying the purchase—particularly in difficult economic times. Cleaning by hand is inexpensive as scouring pads and cleaning solutions are cheap and companies can frequently hire minimum-wage laborers to do the work. In some cases, the prevalent attitude may be “We have always done it this way, so why change now.” In these environments, there is little documentation of the time and costs associated with cleaning, or the financial impact of equipment maintenance and repair caused by traditional cleaning. Maintenance is something that is simply done when necessary. The lack of documentation enhanced by the attitude toward cleaning and tracking the impact, makes justification even more difficult. In addition, because the documentation does not exist, it would be difficult for many companies to calculate the return-on-investment for any new technology.

The truth is the connection between cleaning and production simply cannot be made unless someone is documenting it and the push for better tracking must come from the top-down. New cleaning technologies from ultrasonic to dry ice blasting have proven to reduce cleaning times and costs, particularly when it comes to labor and equipment repair and replacement. The biggest benefit; however, may be in the fact that less downtime means more production time. Even in difficult economic times, most companies will understand the positive financial impact of being able to use the same equipment to complete more production cycles to make more high quality (less scrap) products. As companies do a better job of tracking their overall impact of cleaning and maintenance on their operations, justifying the purchase of new technologies will be easier and understanding of ROI more obvious.

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