Mechanical Vs. Hydraulic Dock Levellers

A dock leveller is a device to bridge the height difference and the gap between a dock and a trailer. Also, they compensate for the up-and-down float of the trailer bed while loading goods. Generally, dock levellers make the loading process easier and safer because it minimizes the possibility of damaging goods. 

Depending on what you want and your budget, there are different dock levellers. Despite the different dock levellers on the market, most people opt for hydraulic and mechanical ones. 

Read more about the differences between mechanical and hydraulic dock levellers and their advantages and disadvantages:

Hydraulic Leveller 

Hydraulic levellers do not require any manual intervention by workers. Using a button control system, you can activate, store, and position hydraulic dock levellers. You can position these dock levellers within 12 inches above or below the loading dock.

Because of the great positioning range, you can easily use a hydraulic dock lever with many truck sizes making them an excellent choice if your company has trucks of different sizes. 

In addition, these types of dock levellers have many other advantages, such as:

  • Easy to Use – Hydraulic dock levellers are easy to use because no is no manual work. They come with a control system, which makes them easier to use than mechanical levellers.
  • Require Less Maintenance – Hydraulic levellers do not have many moving parts translating into a low chance of failure and further low maintenance, saving money.
  • Long-lasting – Hydraulic levellers are long-lasting compared to mechanical levellers. 
  • Safety – Since there is no human intervention, hydraulic levellers are safer than mechanical levels. In addition, hydraulic levellers remove the risk of repetitive use injuries.

Despite all the advantages of hydraulic levellers, they have some disadvantages. These disadvantages include the following: 

  • They consume a lot of power 
  • They cost more than mechanical levellers and are expensive to install.

Mechanical Dock Leveller

A loading dock worker must manually activate the spring mechanism in this material handling system by pulling a chain, which causes the platform to rise and the lip to extend onto a truck’s trailer bed. Once on the trailer bed, the worker lowers the leveller by walking on it while supporting himself with his weight.

Next, the loading dock employee will pull the secondary chain to retract the support legs when the trailer bed is lower than the dock so that the leveller can go below the dock.

Mechanical levellers have many advantages, such as:

  • Easy to operate
  • Consume no power hence saving money 
  • Excellent for small facilities without heavy loading traffic 
  • Easy and cheap to install 

Mechanical levellers also have disadvantages. They include:

  • Require frequent maintenance 
  • Not an excellent choice if you have huge loading traffic 
  • Increased risk of injuries due to repetitive use
  • Increased overall costs because of additional workers to operate them

 As seen above, mechanical and hydraulic dock levellers have advantages and disadvantages. Therefore, you must understand both dock levellers before purchasing. Although hydraulic levellers are more expensive than mechanical ones, you save more because they are durable and require less maintenance. At Godrej, we have both mechanical and hydraulic levellers at the best prices in the market.