The first step when considering converting to hydraulic operation is to investigate if the dock leveler is structurally sound. In its simplest form a dock leveler is a temporary structural bridge between the building floor and the truck to be loaded. A qualified loading dock service technician should first perform a complete front to back structural inspection of the dock levelers primary components. During the inspection the technician should check the deck, beam and headboard weldments, the lip and lip hinge weldments and check for signs of deck/lip deflection. Deck/lip deflection often indicates that the dock leveler is showing signs of being over loaded. If the dock leveler is not structurally sound or the capacity is underrated replacing the mechanical dock leveler with an upgraded hydraulic model should be a consideration. However if the mechanical dock leveler proves to be both structurally sound and there are no signs of structural deflection it is definitely worth the investment to convert to hydraulic operation.