Should I Buy Used or New Pallet Racking?

Every warehouse is unique and deserves solutions specific to its needs. Which loading dock should you purchase? Does your industry require high-speed doors to preserve your internal environment? How much pallet racking should you purchase? The questions are limitless, and the possibilities even moreso.

As the largest dealer of used pallet racking on the Gulf Coast, we have many Port City Industrial clients ask if used or new pallet racking is better for their warehouse. Ultimately, that answer is up to you; there is no right or wrong decision. Which elements do you value the most?

Pros of Used Pallet Racking

Pros of New Pallet Racking

Both new and used pallet racking have their own unique benefits. Your warehouse’s capabilities, such as measurements and intended uses, will also affect which type of pallet racking you should buy.

How Do You Decide Which Type to Invest In?

No matter which type of pallet racking you purchase, pallet racking is an ideal solution for maximizing vertical space in a warehouse. When installed correctly, pallet racking is strong, sturdy and secure for both your packaging and employees. At Port City Industrial, we want to help you customize and design a warehouse system that meets your needs and exceeds your expectations. Experience the Port City Industrial difference when you visit www.portcitymobile.com today!

8 Cold Weather Tips for Your Warehouse

Not all warehouse practices are ideal for cooler temperatures and unpredictable weather. As we settle into a cool winter, we recommend that you reassess your warehouse’s preparation for cold conditions, slippery surfaces and more. Here are eight of our best tips for cold weather preparation!

  1. Keep All Walkways Clear

A cluttered walkway is one misstep away from potential injuries, ruined equipment and decreased productivity. Keep your warehouse organized and your walkways clear of any debris, trash, packages and more. 

  1. Ensure That Your Employees are Safe

Are your employees as safe as possible during the cold weather? OSHA has not released any formal regulations for cold weather, but there are specific guidelines for employee safety. For example, your warehouse employees should be able to perform first-aid when necessary, as well as identify and recognize cold weather-related injuries. Comprehensive training should include controlling warehouse equipment, enforcing preventative measures and more.

  1. Reduce the Air Flow From Outside With Strip Doors

Any type of weather can affect the internal climate of your warehouse, especially colder temperatures. Ensure that any warmth remains inside your building with strip doors. When installed correctly, strip doors placed at loading docks can help reduce cold air from outside.

  1. Only Use High Speed Doors When Necessary

High speed doors are intended to reduce any effects from outside elements. A fully-powered high speed door can move at 48 inches per second. However, those seconds can quickly add up over time, especially when exposure to the elements is a risk. Make sure that your employees know to only use high speed doors when necessary!

  1. Consider Investing in Forklift Cab Covers

Did you know that a forklift driver has a higher chance of suffering an accident when the weather is unideal? Weather like snow, ice and drizzle can affect a driver’s vision and security, which increases the chance of an accident occurring. Forklift cab covers also protect the driver from any potential falling cargo.

  1. Don’t Skip Inspections

The worst time to discover faulty equipment is when you need the equipment most. Don’t cut any inspections of warehouse equipment and HVAC systems. Your employees (and bottom line!) will thank you in the long run.

  1. Check That Docks and Doors are Sealed

Doors are the main line of defense between your warehouse interior and the outside environment. Check that your doors are sealed; clean your loading docks to ensure that ice does not form. Simple steps like these are key to keeping your warehouse productive and your employees secure.

  1. Ensure That Your Plumbing Works Properly

A plumbing leak is the easiest way for liquid to accumulate where it doesn’t belong. Frozen liquid can cause blockages. Also, we recommend that you insulate any pipes that are not adequately prepared for dropping temperatures.

There are many steps to preparing your warehouse for cold weather! At Port City Industrial, we are dedicated to making your warehouse work, despite ice, cold, drizzle and rain. We offer equipment maintenance, warehouse optimization and more helpful services. Reach out to our experienced crews today to get started.

10 Tips to Prevent Loading Dock Leveler Problems

You just invested in a dock leveler for your warehouse, or perhaps you’re considering investing in new equipment. In order to make your money last, how do you avoid loading dock leveler problems? Below are the 10 best tips for preventing loading dock leveler problems for your warehouse!

  1. Ensure that your loading dock is properly installed.

Is your loading dock equipment properly installed? Incorrect installations could risk equipment effectiveness and personnel safety. At Port City Industrial, all of our crews are well-trained in equipment handling, including correct installation of loading dock levelers.

  1. Practice safety and enforce operating precautions.

It may seem like common sense, but you should ensure that you and your

personnel are practicing warehouse safety whenever possible. Dangerous behavior, like operating warehouse equipment while pedestrians are on the floor, could put lives at risk as much as dollars.

  1. Schedule regular dock leveler maintenance and inspections.

Working in a warehouse is known to be unpredictable; however, maintenance and inspections can keep the unexpected to a minimum. You should ensure that regular equipment maintenance is scheduled and enforced. Inspections can expose potential problems, especially with dock levelers.

  1. Confirm that you and your employees are familiar with the loading dock equipment.

No matter how much experience you and your employees may have, you should always 

confirm that you have experience in the equipment that you are handling. Keep any manuals in a safe space for future reference. You should also consider scheduling regular meetings to review equipment protocol. While seemingly tedious, these types of endeavors are worth it in the long run by saving costs!

  1. Make sure that your loading dock equipment is up to date.

Is your warehouse loading dock equipment up to date? Regularly upgrading your loading 

dock equipment will be cost-effective in the long run, because then you will not have as many repairs.

  1. Purchase the correct loading dock leveler for your warehouse.

Not all loading dock levelers are created equally. There are four different types of dock 

levelers that you can choose from, including mechanical dock levelers, hydraulic dock 

levelers, air dock levelers and vertical dock levelers. Make sure that you purchase the best one for your warehouse and its uses.

  1. Invest in the right equipment for your loading dock leveler and warehouse.

A loading dock leveler is not always effective by itself. When purchasing and using a 

loading dock leveler, you should make sure that you have the right equipment available 

to use. Truck restraints and dock bumpers are just a few examples. Without them, you 

could risk hurting your loading dock leveler.

  1. Keep good records of your equipment.

All maintenance, services and miscellaneous purchases should be documented. Any 

warranties should also be kept in a safe location. Keeping good records of your equipment, and especially your loading dock equipment, will support you in any future endeavors.

  1. Do not abuse the loading dock equipment.

Even warehouses have their limits. When using your loading dock leveler, do not 

overwork the equipment. This includes overloading the dock leveler beyond its capacity. 

That can also contribute to potential damages.

  1. Conduct proper preparations for troubleshooting.

Whenever you prepare the loading dock equipment for troubleshooting and 

maintenance, you should ensure that everything is correct and in the right place. This 

includes disconnecting power sources and placing safety signs. While seemingly miniscule details, these actions can prevent potential damage.

Loading dock levelers are expensive, so you should do everything within your power to make sure that it has a long lifespan. Doing so ensures that your warehouse operates at its best! At Port City Industrial, we are committed to Making Warehouses Work. Visit our website at www.portcitymobile.com to learn more about how we can optimize your business.

Safety Systems for Warehouse Overhead Doors

Any manufacturing or distributing warehouse is an unpredictable workplace environment. Cargo is constantly loading and unloading; employees are constantly moving; vehicles are constantly arriving and departing. It may feel impossible to secure the safety and security of all individuals and objects. However, at Port City Industrial, we have the solution: safety systems for warehouse overhead doors.

There are a variety of safety systems for warehouse overhead doors that can be installed and combined. At Port City Industrial, we understand that each warehouse is unique and deserves unique solutions, especially when it comes to safety. Below are just a few safety solutions that we offer. All safety systems are ideal by themselves or can be combined with others for additional security.

Overall door safety extends to other parts of the warehouse as well, such as the loading dock systems. At Port City Industrial, we sell loading dock safety barrier systems intended to be more effective than the standard orange cones. You can also consider investing in vehicle restraint systems for your warehouse in order to protect both personnel and cargo.

Service Makes the Difference

At Port City Industrial, we believe in good, old-fashioned customer service. Relationships with our clients and vendors go beyond the sale; we want to be a long-term partner, not just a warehouse equipment provider. That is why we offer a variety of services and warehouse solutions beyond equipment. We also believe that customer service is a product and experience in itself.

Port City Industrial proudly serves the Gulf Coast with the following values in mind:

When selling warehouse equipment, we believe that every deal is more than just a transaction. Instead, the transaction is an opportunity for building relationships with clients and vendors alike. For example, we install every piece of equipment that we sell without any hidden costs or extra charges because we believe that is the correct way to conduct business. We also optimize, modify, tear down and relocate warehouse equipment—all with a smile! Feel free to contact our office today for more information.

Not only is Port City Industrial a warehouse equipment company, but we also offer maintenance services! You and your employees can take advantage of our maintenance services and plans, even if you did not purchase the equipment from us. With a fleet of service vehicles driven by a highly skilled and capable team, your warehouse equipment will be back to peak performance in no time with minimal costs. We also offer emergency maintenance and repair services, so that your warehouse can continue being productive.

Also, whenever a client calls our office, he or she will talk to a person, not an automated machine. Port City Industrial is proud to be a local and family-owned business, and we treat our customers like extended family… Which includes picking up the phone! Whether it’s a simple question or a warehouse emergency, we happily treat every inquiry as a priority. No issue is too big or too small for us and our crews.

In summary, at Port City Industrial, our customer service experience extends beyond the workplace. We believe that business should be built around relationships and not money. That belief shows within our sales, our equipment services and our offices. We also ensure that each of our employees stands by our company values and practices them too so that a quality experience is guaranteed every time. High-quality and trustworthy service makes a difference in every industry!

Port City Industrial’s mission is to make our clients’ warehouses work, including yours. Contact us today to see the differences that 20 years of experience and dedication to service can make.

A licensed general contractor, Port City Industrial is the leading provider of used pallet racking equipment along the Gulf Coast. We also provide loading dock equipment, overhead doors, packaging and more—all to Make Your Warehouse Work. Contact us today at www.portcitymobile.com or by calling (251) 277-3444.

Loading Dock Bumpers

At Port City Industrial, we are proud to offer a variety of the Blue Giant loading dock bumpers. A loading dock bumper is an apparatus attached to a loading dock that absorbs the impact of a truck or trailer and provides protection to both your building and the vehicle. 

Approaching trucks and trailers may generate up to three-hundred thousand pounds of impact force during the load-in and load-out process. While this may not initially cause any damage to the building or warehouse, continuous impact over time may lead to dangerous damage if not properly addressed. By choosing the right loading dock bumper, you can avoid building, dock or vehicle damage, expensive repairs and unnecessary downtown time. 

Not all loading dock bumpers are made equally, which is why it is important for us to help you choose the best bumper for your dock. The most common types of loading dock bumpers are:

No matter the traffic in your facility, loading dock bumpers are an essential part of a facility’s protection plan. Choosing the right loading dock will help you avoid costly damages and delays. Let Port City Industrial help you find the loading dock bumper that suits your facility the best. With years of experience and help from local experts, Port City Industrial has all the tools to help your facility maximize efficiency at a minimum cost!

How Experts Tell When It is Time to Upgrade Loading Dock Equipment

The worst time to discover that you should upgrade loading dock equipment is when it breaks. You, your warehouse manager or your employees have probably stood there trying to understand how you missed the signs. Broken loading dock equipment contributes to lost profits, less productivity and work-related accidents.

How do you know when it is time to replace or upgrade your loading dock equipment? Experts say that the most common signs include wear and tear, rust, hindered functionality, visible damage and more.

  1. Signs of Wear and Tear

Are your levelers lifting? Is there abnormal wear and tear to anything, including the dock itself? Are springs showing signs of wear? Simple questions like these are the easiest way to decide whether or not you should upgrade your loading dock equipment. 

  1. Excessive Rust

Any type of corrosion can be difficult to avoid in a warehouse environment. However, excessive rust or deterioration of metal can be a sign that it is time to upgrade or update your loading dock equipment. In a warehouse, rust can hinder effectiveness, productivity and safety.

  1. Inability to Function Properly

Is your dock leveler struggling to meet the warehouse floor? Is there any misalignment with equipment? Is the dock lip not fully extending? Small inconveniences can often lead to bigger problems. You should call for maintenance when you encounter these issues because they could be a sign that you need to replace your loading dock equipment.

  1. Visible Damage

Visible damage is more than just a few bumps. Are frames exposed? Are there visible cracks? Accidents happen, but loading dock equipment should quickly be replaced if broken. For example, dock bumpers with exposed frames or loosened rubber will decrease their effectiveness.

  1. A New Warehouse

If you are moving from one warehouse location to another, you should consider investing in equipment upgrades. That would be easier than adjusting loading dock equipment to a new location or trying to combine old and new equipment. It would also be a safer decision.

  1. Available Upgrades

Is your equipment outdated? Technology is constantly changing and advancing, especially in the manufacturing industry. If there are any available upgrades or updates for your loading dock equipment, you should consider investing in them. Upgrades are developed for a reason, including improved safety, better functionality and more.

You should upgrade your loading dock equipment whenever efficiency and safety are called into question. Otherwise, you could risk running higher costs than just buying new equipment! Loading dock equipment is not a priority that you will want to consider at the last minute. At Port City Industrial, we will service and maintain your warehouse equipment, even if you did not purchase it from us.

Port City Industrial is the only dealer of used pallet racking on the Gulf Coast. We also offer a variety of warehouse equipment, including loading dock levelers, roll-up doors, packaging materials, warehouse fans and more. Visit www.portcitymobile.com or call (251) 277-3444 today to get started.

What is the Difference Between a Mechanical & Hydraulic Dock Leveler?

Have you invested in a dock leveler for your warehouse yet? Compared to dock boards or dock plates, dock levelers are permanent installations that bridge the gap at the loading dock bay. Dock levelers are ideal solutions for increasing loading and unloading efficiency as well as ensuring employee and product safety. They also come as two separate types: a mechanical dock leveler and a hydraulic dock leveler.

Do you know the key differences between a mechanical dock leveler and a hydraulic dock leveler?

  1. Activation 

As implied by its name, mechanical dock levelers require manual activation. When an employee pulls a chain, the heavy-duty lift springs release. A mechanical dock leveler functions with many parts, including springs, lip latches and more. 

In comparison, hydraulic dock levelers are powered by a motor, hydraulic cylinders and hoses. A warehouse employee only has to push a button to activate the system for use. Automatic return can even be programmed!

  1. Sensitivity

Is your warehouse climate-controlled? Believe it or not, this small detail can affect your decision on the better dock leveler for your warehouse. The mechanical dock leveler has springs, which are sensitive to temperature changes. The springs can expand in summer heat, but shrink in winter cold. 

In comparison, the hydraulic deck leveler is not temperature-sensitive.

  1. Physical Labor

When debating the differences between mechanical and hydraulic dock levelers, you must also consider the abilities and safety of your workforce. The mechanical dock leveler requires more physical labor, such as the operator using his or her body weight to lower the dock bed.

In comparison, the hydraulic dock leveler requires less physical labor to operate because it does not call for bending or pulling.

  1. Cost

The most obvious difference between a mechanical dock leveler and a hydraulic one is the cost. 

A mechanical dock leveler is the more budget-friendly option. It tends to cost less for businesses up-front; the hidden costs are in maintenance, as its parts may need routine service.

A hydraulic dock leveler can cost as much as 10 times as much as a mechanical dock leveler. However, an important aspect to consider is that a hydraulic dock leveler tends to last longer than its manual counterpart, as well as require less maintenance. In the long run, you may earn more for your money with a hydraulic dock leveler.

Both types of dock levelers have various pros and cons. The correct dock leveler should fit your budget, provide long-time operation, manage heavy loads as well as keep your employees safe. Port City Industrial is here to help you make the better decision for you, your warehouse, your employees and your business. 

At Port City Industrial, we provide a variety of dock levelers: dock lip safety barriers, vertical storing dock levelers, hydraulic dock levelers, mechanical dock levelers, airbag dock levelers, edge-of-dock levelers and the XDS extra dock safety system. If you are interested in purchasing or upgrading a dock leveler, please contact your sales representative or visit www.portcitymobile.com today.

How to Select the Right High-Performance Doors

Doors are essential to keeping your warehouse working as efficiently as possible. However, when optimizing your warehouse for superior performance, how do you know which high-performance doors to choose? Here are 5 helpful tips for selecting the best high-performance door for your warehouse, no matter your industry!

  1. What will the door be used for?

Regardless of your industry field, it is important to consider what your warehouse doors’ purpose will be. Who will they keep out? What will they keep in? These are important questions to ask!

For example, what if you store frozen products in your warehouse? If this is the case, you will want a door that offers both speed and high-insulation. High-speed freezer doors are the perfect choice by keeping your products cool and your costs low. 

Apply the same way of thinking to your business. There are a variety of doors available for you to choose from and keep your warehouse working to full capacity!

  1. What are the safety precautions necessary?

Every door will come with its own risks, regardless of how much training your employees undergo. However, the best way to decrease the risk of any work-related accidents is to fully research your door options, make sure your employees understand the door and that they understand how it works.

The best example is a rapid-roller door. Will your employees know its speeds, or how to stop it in case of an emergency? Unfortunately, operating warehouse doors is not as easy as flicking a switch. These are important elements to consider when selecting the right warehouse door for your building.

  1. Will your employees benefit?

Expanding upon the previous point, you should consider your warehouse employees when considering your warehouse doors. Will the door be easy or difficult to open, much less operate? Temperature control is also another element to consider. For example, doors that leak cool air may be less satisfactory for your employees, especially in the warmer months.

Overall, while your employees’ well-being may not be an obvious factor in selecting the right door for your warehouse, it is still an important one.

  1. How much does a new door cost?

Many individuals may consider this question the most critical one in the decision-making process: how much will your new warehouse door cost? As with any other warehouse equipment, the costs of a door go beyond the initial purchase and installation. What about after the fact?

Other major costs for warehouse doors can include maintenance and servicing, as well as any extra equipment or material.

  1. What traffic will be interacting with the door?

Depending on who, or what, makes deliveries to your warehouse, you will need to consider what kind of traffic you expect to enter and leave the building. If a delivery van unloads heavy equipment, then a high-performance roll-up rubber door would be ideal. If you require a more versatile solution that can adapt to different kinds of traffic, then a fabric door would be best for your warehouse.

In conclusion, there are a variety of factors to consider when selecting the right type of high-performance door for your warehouse and business. However, these are the top 5, including use, costs, safety and traffic!

Are you still thinking about the perfect high-performance door for your warehouse building? Port City Industrial can help! Not only do we sell Rytec Corporation doors, but we also install, service and maintain any equipment that you purchase from us.

New Contract with City of Mobile & Port City Industrial

Port City Industrial has always been a company that values the dignity of hard work, building lasting relationships, doing what’s right and serving our customers and the community.

We are a proud locally-owned family business based out of Mobile, Alabama, that is always willing to go the extra mile to make our client’s warehouses work. Our vision for our company is displayed through our values and actions in hopes to make a greater impact on our clients and the community. We believe in creating opportunities through partnerships with our community that can help encourage local growth and expansion to better serve the great City of Mobile.

The Port City Industrial team is thrilled and honored to announce a new partnership between the City of Mobile and Port City Industrial. This month, Port City Industrial has been awarded an authorization service contract with the City of Mobile for overhead garage doors, counter shutters, electronic gates services and more at various city locations throughout the city. The comprehensive closing costs for this contract results in $105,600.00.

This partnership is a true privilege on the behalf of Port City Industrial and a testament to commitment towards furthering our city for a better future. We look forward to what’s to come for our community and our city!