Whether you’re a consumer, or you’re in the food business, everyone should understand the importance of leak detection in food packaging, and understand the basic types of leak detection equipment available. Leaks in food packaging can allow bacterial growth and can cause food poisoning in some circumstances.
Smart business owners know the value of using good quality leak detection equipment that gets the job done. Here, we’ll discuss 6 common types of leak detection equipment for food packaging so you can make an informed decision that’s right for your business.
1. Ultrasonic Measurement Leak Detection Equipment
This type of leak detection equipment measures sound to determine whether a leak is present. Leaking food packaging typically creates a high-frequency noise that must be detected by specialized leak detection equipment.
Ultrasonic leak detection measurement can look for leaks using an electronic meter, and can also let you know the rate of the leak.
2. The Bubble Test Leak Detection Method
While this test doesn’t necessarily require specialized equipment, it’s still a popular method for detecting leaks in food packaging at home.
The customer simply submerges the food packaging in water and evaluates whether any bubbles form. If bubbles form, a leak is present and the food must be discarded.
3. Pressure Decay Leak Detection Equipment
Some leak detection equipment uses pressure as a metric for whether the food packaging is leaking. Intact food packaging should typically maintain its pressure over time.
By using pressure decay leak detection equipment, manufacturers measure whether the pressure changes over time. If it changes, that means the product will need to be discarded or repackaged.
4. Vacuum Decay Leak Detection Equipment
Just like pressure decay, vacuum decay leak detection equipment measures the pressure inside the packaging material. A vacuum is created, and measurements are taken to see whether the pressure changes over time. If the pressure changes, this is indicative of a leak.
5. Helium Sniff Leak Detection Equipment
Helium sniff leak detection equipment is another unique way to test for leaks in food packaging. The food is packaged with helium — an inert gas — and the surface is scanned with a helium sniffer that detects the gas.
When the material has a leak, the sniffer will identify helium in the air around the leak. This method has the advantage of being able to locate the leak effectively so the problem can be dealt with.
6. Helium Spray Leak Detection Equipment
Like the previous method, this method also uses the inert gas helium to detect leaks in food packaging.
Helium spray leak detection equipment sprays helium gas at the area of the packaging that is being tested. A helium sensor on the other side detects whether the gas has penetrated the package. If so, a leak is present and the food will have to be repackaged.
Helium spray leak detection equipment is considered one of the best solutions because it offers a lot of sensitivity and works in normal atmospheric conditions.