Pentalift Blog - Dock Levelers

What are the most common loading dock product electrical interlocks?

Although there are many combinations available there are 2 very common interlocks specified. 1. Interlocking a vehicle restraint to a hydraulic or air powered dock leveler. This interlock is safety related, the dock leveler will not operate until the truck in position has been secured by the vehicle restraint. The truck secured signal from the vehicle restraint now renders the dock leveler controls operational. 2. Interlocking the overhead door to a hydraulic or air powered dock leveler. This interlock is used to reduce potential damage to the overhead door and improve building security. Before the dock leveler will operate the overhead door must be raised which activates a wall installed limit switch. The activated limit switch now renders the dock leveler controls operational. When the dock leveler is cycled it will not contact the overhead door causing damage to the door and the locking mechanism.

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Why are there more and more steel face loading dock bumper in use?

Loading dock bumpers are designed to stop an incoming truck and prevent damage to the building. When the truck is in position and the loading begins it is common for the truck bed to raise and lower due to the weight change. The back of the truck is tight to the face of the dock bumper; this up and down movement causes abrasion to the face of the dock bumper and puts stress on the dock bumper anchor bolts. A laminated dock bumper with a steel face absorbs the energy from the truck as it is backed into position. During the loading process the truck bed up and down movement now slides on the steel face of the bumper significantly removing the abrasion factor and also lowers the stress on the anchor bolts.

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Why is it important that a dock leveler is installed correctly?

A vast amount of problems that occur in the field to dock equipment is because of improper installation. Different brands of dock levelers have different instructions and different methods of installation that vary from company to company. It is important to follow the manufacturer’s instructions to ensure a safe and successful installation to help minimize problems in the field.

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What to expect if equipment is hot dip galvanized?

The hot dip galvanizing process has a number of factors to consider. Extended delivery-the equipment is first built, tested dismantled and shipped in sub-assemblies to the galvanizer. After the hot dip galvanizing process is completed the equipment is returned and re-assembled, there is often some element of rework such as re-threading tapped holes etc. Distortion-the sub-assemblies consist of many different steel materials and thicknesses. The hot dip process and the cooling stages often distort the lighter gauge steel, although structurally sound there is an aesthetic difference. Additional costs-this process involves the initial assembly, dismantling into sub-assemblies, shipping costs, re assembly and rework. However in the right application the additional costs are considered to be a good investment in the extended lifetime of the equipment.

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Is hot dip galvanizing expensive?

Hot dip galvanizing is significantly more costly on the front end than a spray galvanized or a painted equipment finish. The increased costs can be associated with the extra handling during the manufacturing process, the shipping costs of the sub-assemblies to and from the galvanizer’s facility and any rework required before final assembly. In some applications hot dip galvanized equipment (although initially more costly) is not considered expensive in relation to the extended structural lifetime of the product. In corrosive or repeated wash down applications hot dip galvanizing is often a worthwhile investment.

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