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News 3 Factors that Matter in IBC Recycling

3 Factors that Matter in IBC Recycling

January 11, 2022     News

IBC recycling is short for “Intermediate bulk containers recycling”. An IBC is blow-molded with HDPE (High-density polyethylene), often supported with steel frames, stackable and reusable. People use them in mass handling, transport and storage of liquid, pastes and harsh chemicals. IBC totes are featured: big hallow, contaminated, space-wasting if left unused. Blue drum and trash bins share the same features.

IBC Recycling Line

The first factor matters is shape and volume of the containers, this decides the time needed to be grasped by shredder blades. Blue drum is the fastest shredded, cylinder shape easily crabbed by shredder blades. Our single shaft shredder P3150L only takes 10 seconds to grasp, then quickly shred into particles. IBC is bigger and cube-shaped, it rolls and turns, our shredder ram compresses it to the blades. It takes about 20 sec for P3150L to handle this big guy. Trash bins are mouth-opened, more flexible when caught by the blades. It takes over 40s fully shredded. Wiscon made over 10 IBC recycling lines in 2021, both single shaft and double shaft shredders used in primary size reduction.

one shaft shredder for IBC

Second factor we care is how contaminated the drums and totes are. We have to talk about our end clients in this case. For IBC producers, they have clean drums but with flaws. Their aim is quickly shred defected drums and re-use as regrinds. For environmental recycling companies, they have tougher tasks. Drums they have are mostly dirty, deformed and abandoned, usually considered as hazardous waste. Some come with semi-permanent labels. It’s not easy to wash them inside, many are left high-contaminated with chemicals. Their purpose is to reduce land abuse and get possible profit in dealing recycled HDPE particles.

plastic drum shredding machine

For clean drums, Wiscon made a shredder-crusher compact, double shaft shredder and crusher blades combined in a tight crushing chamber. One conveyor belt saved between, workshop space saving and cost-effective. Only one conveyor needed to in-feed IBCs. For contaminated ones, we have sink float tanks for cold wash, or hot washer for chemical caustic remains, and friction washer for secondary washing and label-removing. Our team design and make these parts into a smooth line.

The third factor we often ask is the final particle size. Clean, dry and color pure particles are most value-added, it also takes more procedures in the line, and thus more costly. A centrifugal dryer removes moisture content, our vertical dryer takes away 99% moisture. Optical sorter is necessary if color sorting needed.

IBC regrinds

For stable transportation, IBCs are wrapped with steel cages. Before throw them into the shredder, manual removing cages is necessary.

In a complete line design and assembly, we have more factors to consider in real place. Like client’s workshop layout, water recycle and electric use etc. Contact Wiscon team for your solution now!

Plastic Recycling Line

Plastic wash line in Canada


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