Your Guide to Cardboard Balers
If you’re looking for information about cardboard balers, chances are you’re dealing with a massive amount of recyclable waste in your facility.
Because of their ability to reduce the volume of cardboard waste by approximately 90 percent, balers are a terrific investment for anyone who runs a warehouse. Although they come with an upfront cost, they could also bring in additional revenue for your operation.
In this guide, we’ll cover all the essential information you need to know before buying a cardboard baler. Keep reading to learn more about how a baler can benefit your team.
What is a Cardboard Baler?
A baler is a large machine that is used in the process of recycling cardboard. Using a hydraulic press system, balers compress cardboard boxes, displays, miscellaneous paper waste and other cardboard materials into a bale so they take up less space.
A baler can be used for any of the following reasons:
- Increased efficiency in the shipping of cardboard waste
- Reduced volume of material handling
- A supplementary source of revenue
- Increased product value
- Meeting industry regulations or standards
Cardboard balers can benefit your facility in a number of ways. They can reduce the time your team spends on materials management, increase the amount of free space in your warehouse for more important usage, improve your recycling program and reduce the amount you spend on waste disposal.
How do Cardboard Balers Work?
While they come in a variety of styles, balers all function similarly. Here’s an overview of how cardboard balers function:
1. Load cardboard into the chamber. The best practice for this is to flatten cardboard as much as possible before laying it in the baler. This means disassembling boxes and displays so that they can stack flat atop each other.
2. Close the machine and begin baling. It’s important to follow all the instructions and safety procedures when operating a baler. Close the safety gate and ensure all team members are away from the machine before beginning the baling process.
3. Allow the baler to complete a cycle. When you initiate the baling process, a hydraulic ram powered by an electric pump will begin compacting the cardboard. The baler pumps hydraulic oil to the cylinder, which drives the ram downwards and compresses the material in the baler.
4. Bale the material if the machine is full. If the machine locks in the fully-extended position and the indicator light comes on, that means the cardboard block is ready to be baled. Tie the compacted materials with wire or twine, then eject the bale from the machine. If the baler doesn’t lock, it will compress the waste as densely as possible before reducing pressure and returning to the open position. Your team can then continue loading cardboard into the baler and compacting it as it fills until the machine is full.
What Businesses Should Use a Baler?
All warehouse and storage facilities that manage recyclable paper and cardboard materials should use a cardboard baler to reduce the volume of waste in their facility.
Common facilities and operations that use balers include:
- E-commerce warehouses
- Distribution centers
- Recycling facilities
- Packaging facilities
- Paper mills
- Warehouse retailers
How Much Do Cardboard Balers Cost?
The cost of a cardboard baler varies based on a variety of criteria such as where you purchase the equipment from, and whether the baler you purchase is new or used. In general, you can expect to pay between $5000 and $20,000.
If you add additional features to your machine such as conveyors, you may get more functionality out of your equipment, but at a higher price point.
Whether a new or used baler is right for your team will depend on a variety of factors. New balers come with a higher upfront cost, but often have limited warranties protecting your purchase for a predetermined length of time.
High-quality, used balers can last for years. With the proper maintenance and care, their lifespan is competitive with new units and they tend to have a lower total cost of ownership.
Those who need a cardboard baler for temporary use can consider renting one from a reputable company. This solution is not beneficial for anyone who wants to use their baler for an extended length of time, as the cost of the rental will overtake the upfront purchase cost.
Cardboard Baler Weight and Size
Because of the wide variety of different types of cardboard balers, the size and weight of each are determined by the model you choose.
Some of the types of balers are as follows:
- Small, medium, and large vertical balers
- Closed-end horizontal baler
- Open-end horizontal baler
- Industrial baler
The bales each machine produces also vary, but are typically between three to six feet. They can weigh anywhere from 200 to over 1000 pounds, depending on the materials being processed.
If your facility doesn’t have the equipment to move large bales of cardboard, then you should select a baler with a smaller bale size. Units that produce larger bales offer maximum return on recycling loads but require heavy machinery to transfer bales from the baler to your facility’s recycling center.
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Is a Cardboard Baler Worth the Investment?
Here are a few reasons why you should consider investing in a cardboard baler for your business.
1. Generate revenue for your business. You can sell baled materials that would otherwise end up costing you money to process.
2. Reduce hazards. By decreasing the volume of waste in your facility, you eliminate potential fire, vermin and injury hazards.
3. Reduce the amount of waste you produce. As states update their waste regulations, this could become a concern for your operation.
4. Spend less on waste disposal. Reduce the cost your business spends to send waste to landfills each year.
Find a High-Quality Used Cardboard Baler for Your Warehouse Facility
Looking for a cardboard baler?
We’ve got you covered. At East Coast Storage Equipment, we provide customized equipment solutions that maximize space and efficiency in your warehouse.