Automating Your Paint Line: How to Know When You’re Ready

Have you ever wondered if automation might be the right choice for your paint line? Determine if automation is a good fit for your plant.

3 Reasons to Automate Your Paint Line

Automating processes, reducing manual labor costs, doing more with less – all goals you're likely interested in achieving. In order to automate your paint line, the benefits must equal or exceed the time, money and effort put into to making this happen.

These are some of the most common reasons to automate and may help you to determine if automation is a good fit for your plant.

1. Cost reduction

Trimming labor costs is a key factor that management focuses on when considering paint line automation. The key to reducing labor costs is to make sure the actual headcount is lower than what would be required to produce the same volume manually.

If automation creates a headcount reduction, the direct labor savings is usually stated as the entire cost reduction, but other cost benefits often are excluded.

Some manufacturers forget to factor in the indirect labor costs, which includes material handling, painter prep, and other costly non-valued added processes like employee training that can be reduced if your paint line is automated.

2. Improved quality

Automation can improve quality since robots can accomplish tasks that are difficult for humans to do manually, such as precise and repeatable movement. Automating a process also eliminates subjective decision-making, variation, and operator error, which can happen when painting is done manually. In addition, because the robotic equipment is always in the spray booth, contamination carried by human painters into the booth can be reduced.

3. Improved response time

Robots can automatically and quickly adjust painting parameters and spray gun paths, as opposed to a manual change over by the painter, letting you paint different parts faster. Another benefit of having a robot is being able to handle an increased volume.

For example, if the robot typically works two shifts, five days a week, any increased volume can be run on third shift or on the weekend. Without the automation, people would have to be added and trained in order to handle the peak volumes.


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