Unclogging FIBCs Explained

Posted on - 4th September 2020

Spout bottom bulk containers are perfect for a number of applications because of their flexibility and easily controlled discharge of materials. Because of their design, spout bottom bags can also be prone to clogging.

This is sometimes referred to as bridging, and occurs as material sticks to itself during discharge and builds up around the bag's spout. This is quite common for applications involving materials with high moisture content such as agricultural goods and fresh organic products.

Bridging can really impact the efficiency of your operations as it will delay the discharge of materials. This can also present a safety hazard to workers, which makes it important to understand how to unclog an FIBC.

For our latest blog, Centurion Packaging is going to share advice on the safest ways to unclog bulk containers.

Advice on Unclogging Filled FIBCs

If you are looking to unclog a spout bottom bulk bag, do not stand beneath the bag as it can be very dangerous and lead to significant injury.

Luckily, there are many ways to unclog a spout bottom bag without endangering your workers. Here are some examples -

1. Use a broom a handle or another type of extension pole to push the spout bottom and try to fee the materials, whilst staying as far away from the bag as possible.

2. Massage the area around the spout with your hands or an extension pole to try to loosen the materials. Keep a close eye on the discharge spout and again, avoid getting underneath the bag.

3. Push the material through the spout with a broom handle or extension pole while standing above the bulk bag. If attempting this method, ensure you maintain stable footing and keep any other workers away from the bottom of the bag.

4. Cut the bag around the bottom of the spout, but remember you will not be able to reuse the bag afterwards. If you decide on this method, be careful with the blade and cut as little as possible to avoid an uncontrolled discharge of the material. Leverage a blade that can be used at a distance to minimise risk to the worker.

No matter which method you choose to clear a clogged discharged spout, Centurion Packaging would recommend checking all safety protocols before starting.

Limit Clogged Spouts

While you cannot completely prevent clogging, especially when handling materials with high moisture content, you can take steps to limit the possibility of a clogged spout.

Here are two suggestions -

Use an Oversized Spout Bottom FIBC - Oversized spout bottom bulk containers feature a 28-inch diameter spout. The larger spout's faster discharge rate and larger opening prevent material from clogging, which makes them more reliable and safe for users.

Using a Vented FIBC - If possible, use a bulk bag with vents to dry out the product before discharge. This helps to prevent moisture-filled material from sticking and building up around the discharge spout.

Talk to Centurion Packaging about FIBCs

If you have any questions about FIBC bulk bags, get in touch with Centurion Packaging. We are the country’s leading provider of bulk containers for a number of sectors.

Contact Us