Tube welding or aseptic connectors – Which is the better connection method?
Aseptic connectors boast a variety of benefits that many system designers and processors are unaware of. For example, there's the common misconception that tube welding is more affordable. But when you account for the cost of the welder and its upkeep, blade costs, and man hours, aseptic connectors are clearly a more economical choice.
Aseptic connectors are also the clear winners regarding set-up and use time. They are sterilized and ready to go, requiring only seconds to connect and actuate. Tube welding, conversely, requires moving the welder into position, obtaining and installing the correct tubing holder, initializing the welder, loading the tubing, welding and then subsequent cure time. Multiply this by hundreds of welds a week and the use time is significantly more than that of aseptic connectors.
What about maintenance requirements? Single-use disposable connectors are ready to use and don't require any maintenance. Tube welding requires that welders are in good working order. Preventative maintenance is a normal occurrence. When welders are out of service, a backup welder is required.
Aseptic connectors also pose little to no contamination risk because validated aseptic connectors maintain a sterile boundary between two adjoining single-use systems. Contrastingly, if users don't conform to the manufacturer's recommendations while tube welding, they could increase the contamination risk. They might also weld different tube types together, which could lead to weld failure. There are also risks associated with placing tubing with the incorrect diameter in the tube holder, which could cause small pinholes in the weld.
When used properly, either connection method can be reliable, but genderless aseptic connectors are proven to deliver flexibility, ease of use, less downtime and increased reliability and cost efficiencies, which could make them a better choice for system designers and processors.
For the full comparison of the two connection methods, download the comparison guide here.