Do you think your business’ facility could benefit from a dock leveler? Probably so, if you move heavy cargo to and from a warehouse to trucks everyday. A quality dock leveler will contribute significantly to your facility’s efficiency over its long life. But you have to know accurate specifications, or else you risk installing a dock leveler that does not fit your business’ needs. With that in mind, here are some important things to consider when looking for a dock leveler in McDonough, GA for your business:
- Length and width: Dock leveler lengths range from 5 to 12 feet, and because it’s suitable for most applications, the most popular length is 8 feet. The length of the dock leveler—which is based on the maximum height difference between the truck beds and your warehouse’s loading platform—is an important factor that’s used to determine the dock leveler slope. In order to be effective, this slope has to be less than the maximum grade capability of the loading equipment. When it comes to the width, make sure the dock leveler is wide enough to maneuver a forklift onto.
- Load capacity: This depends on the combination of forklift gross weight and load gross weight. While there are conditions that affect load capacity, be sure to use higher-than-required load capacity to extend the life of the dock leveler.
- Activation system: Push button-operated dock levelers are typically less expensive over time, require less servicing and offer the safest type of leveler activation system. Use manual or spring counterbalance activation only when electrical power is unavailable.
Basic types of dock levelers
You also need to choose the right type of dock leveler for your business. One rather important consideration is how often it will get used during the day, because some levelers are made to handle heavier and more frequent loads than other models. The weight of your cargo and the forklift also need to be factored in:
- Heavy-duty dock leveler: These have load capacities ranging from 50,000 to 80,000 pounds and can be customized to manage larger capacities if needed. Due to the weight of heavy-duty dock levelers, most are hydraulic.
- Light-duty dock leveler: These levelers can handle loads weighing 25,000 to 40,000 pounds, usually supporting small forklifts. Light-duty dock levelers can be hydraulically, mechanically or air operated.
- Edge-of-dock levelers: Perfect for lighter applications with similar truck bed heights, these devices get installed on the edge of the concrete floor right at the door opening. Though a relatively inexpensive solution, they do have limited flexibility.
- Pit levelers: If you deal with a variety of truck bed heights and load capacities, then look into pit levelers. They can be customized to suit existing pit sizes, various driveway grades and building projections.
Whether you deal in heavy or lightweight goods, a dock leveler in McDonough, GA is a great way to ensure a safe, efficient and smooth-going workplace. Feel free to contact the team at Affordable Dock & Door for more information.