Pentalift Blog - Loading Dock Equipment News
June 8, 2015, 10:15 am - Vehicle restraints were first introduced to increase safety at the loading dock approximately 35 years ago. The most common safety device has always been the wheel chock for the truck. Wheel chocks are like a wedge, and once the truck is backed into position, the chocks are manually positioned in front of the back wheels to the stop the truck from rolling forward while it is being loaded. Often these chocks go missing, or can can slip on the snow and ice during winter weather. Since they are usually attached to the foundation or the building at the overhead door, vehicle restraints combined with communication light packages, are much more reliable and effective than wheel chocks. When the truck is backed into position the dock attendant activates the vehicle restraint. The vehicle restraint hooks onto the truck’s rear impact guard and locks the truck into position.
Vehicle restraints are not yet mandatory, but more and more companies are specifying vehicle restraints for all of their new buildings as well as adding them to their existing facilities. The loading dock area is often referred to as the most dangerous part of any manufacturing or distribution center, so to increase safety more and more vehicle restraints are being installed. Contact your Pentalift Sales Representative for more information.
June 2, 2015, 5:28 pm - Dock levelers are basically an adjustable ramp or bridge designed to drive the lift truck across from the building onto the truck. Incoming trucks are not all the same height; some may be level with the building floor, some above floor height, and some below floor height. If the incoming trucks are always level with the building floor height a 6’ long dock leveler will work just fine. If the trucks are 4”-8” above or below dock height, then an 8’ long dock leveler works much better because the extra platform length decreases the angle of incline or decline. A 6’ long platform would end up with a steeper degree of incline or decline making it more difficult to push a pump truck with a load on it. As standard, Pentalift dock levelers are available in 6’, 8’, 10’ and 12’ lengths. Always consult with the manufacturer for their recommendations based on the specifics of your loading dock area. Contact your Pentalift Sales Representative for more information.
May 25, 2015, 11:04 am - Is it really worth the extra money to upgrade from a mechanical dock leveler to a hydraulic dock leveler? There’s no question that it is worth the small amount of money to upgrade to a hydraulic dock leveler. Mechanical dock levelers require more periodic maintenance than hydraulic dock levelers to keep them in good working order. Hydraulic dock levelers are more ergonomically correct as there is no physical effort required to raise or lower the dock leveler, all operations are by simple push button control. Hydraulic dock levelers also provide additional safety in a fall safe situation. Fall safe can occur if the dock leveler has a load on it and the truck accidentally departs. Hydraulic dock levelers will lock immediately, even if a mechanical dock leveler is equipped with a fall safe option they will still drop to finished floor level. Safer operation, ergonomically correct and less maintenance are the main reasons why it is definitely worth the extra money to go to hydraulic operation.
May 14, 2015, 5:41 pm - It is common knowledge that most equipment requires maintenance from time to time, and that providing regular service will help ensure its proper function and increased longevity. Dock levelers are no exception. There are not many pieces of equipment that take a greater beating than your loading dock. Although you may push a button or […]
March 27, 2015, 3:24 pm - Why are dock levelers available in 6`, 8`and 10` platform lengths? Different length dock levelers offer different above/below ranges, and will impact the angle of decline or incline that the load will experience. Many loading dock areas are now being designed specifically to the height of the incoming trucks, for example over the highway trucks are pretty consistent in trailer floor height and a shorter platform works well. If the loading dock is to receive a wider range of incoming truck heights 8’ long platform lengths are still the most common in the industry. Contact your Pentalift Sales Representative for more information.