5 Benefits of Yard Ramps
Are you looking for flexible access to trailers or shipping containers? If trucks sit in your yard waiting for an open bay, a yard ramp can help you make loading and unloading much easier.
But what do you need to know about portable loading ramps? Let’s explore portable ramps and discover some of their key benefits.
When to Use a Yard Ramp
Yard ramps help shipping and receiving facilities make the most out of daily unloading and loading needs. But why choose a portable option over fixed?
Every warehouse layout is different. What works for one space may not be applicable to another. For this reason, you need to evaluate each piece of equipment you are using in your facility.
A fixed ramp option is not always best. In fact, in some environments, it can become a hindrance to daily operations.
Warehouses need to fit within specific lot sizes and meet building codes depending on local laws and regulations. It’s not always the case that a permanent loading dock is permissible or preferred.
Understanding why you’d want to choose one ramp option over another comes down to a few factors:
- Space constraints
- Frequency of use
- Location of use
- Business demands
For example, a distribution center located in a crowded business park may only have the option of using portable yard ramps. Another warehouse may see trucks blocking every dock door and others waiting in the yard during the height of the busy season. In this case, a yard ramp can help unclog the unloading schedule by giving workers portable access to trailers.
If you’re still struggling to imagine a useful application for a yard ramp in your facility, let’s review some key benefits so you can make an informed buying decision.
5 Benefits of Yard Ramps
While portable loading ramps may not be the perfect choice for every facility, they can inject extra efficiency into your operations when used right.
From saving precious space at the loading dock to optimizing for flexible loading and unloading operations, you can leverage portable yard ramps for many different warehouse applications.
Below you’ll find five standout benefits of adding a portable loading ramp to your facility.
Only some facilities have the space for a permanent loading dock. Most yard ramps feature either steel or pneumatic wheels. When workers finish the job, the yard ramp can easily move out of the way until it’s needed again.
Compare that to stationery loading docks that require permanent construction. If you need to use the loading dock area for anything other than running lift equipment, like loading directly onto a truck, you’re out of luck.
Flexible Loading and Unloading When You Need It
If your business relies on efficient and safe shipping operations, the last thing you need is a bottleneck in your loading dock logistics.
This can happen in many different ways:
- Too many trucks need unloading
- Late deliveries or orders upend the schedule
- Broken equipment hampers operations
If you’re relying solely on a permanent loading dock, it could mean waiting longer to unload trucks which results in inefficiencies and lost profit. Yard ramps can give workers access to trucks in the yard without affecting daily warehouse operations.
Adjustable for Dynamic Needs
Part of what makes yard ramps so unique is the ability to adjust their height.
Portable loading ramps will either use a manual or hydraulic crank to raise or lower the ramp. This means operators can always set safe levels for forklift operation and allow for unrestricted line of sight.
This can also help if the portable loading dock needs to fit different loading bay areas or differing truck heights across your facility.
Plenty of Extra Features
While you can accomplish quite a bit with custom construction for fixed ramps, yard ramp manufacturers offer various customizable features. These can help with ease of use, durability and, most importantly, safety:
- Non-slip surfaces
- Wheel types
- Ramp clamps
With yard ramps, you can source the right equipment for your specific needs. For instance, if you’re constantly unloading palletized loads with a forklift, you need to buy a yard ramp with a level-off.
This will ensure your operators can safely load and unload palletized products.
Find the Right Yard Ramp for Your Facility
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While you might assume portable yard ramps are less durable than fixed loading docks, that’s not necessarily the case.
Manufacturers build yard ramps to last.
With durable steel construction and other rugged features, you can expect to get years of reliable service from your purchase—that goes for high-quality pre-owned equipment too.
You will need to keep up a regular maintenance schedule to ensure all your yard ramp’s components are safe and usable. But, with the proper care, your portable ramp can last just as long as a permanent dock bolted into the ground.
What to Know Before You Buy
Before you start shopping around for portable loading ramps, you should understand a few key concepts.
First, you need to consider forklift size relative to ramp size. Most forklifts measure somewhere between 48” and 86” in width. Be sure your ramp has the proper width to accommodate your lift equipment.
Another major factor is weight capacity. To get a firm grasp of what kind of weight to expect, you’ll need to consider both forklift weight and the weight of the load. Your inventory needs may differ from another facility, so no single number will satisfy every facility’s weight demands.
Even so, a good guideline to follow is to triple the weight of your forklift. This can give you a general guess as to the correct ramp weight limit.
Lastly, consider ramp height.
Will you use your loading ramp just for trailers in the yard, or will you need it for the loading dock too? Yard ramps do adjust height, but be sure the range is enough to satisfy all your needs.
Where to Find Affordable Used Yard Ramps
Yard ramps are an excellent choice for many different loading and unloading environments. They offer a portable alternative to fixed loading docks and can inject efficiency into any facility’s daily shipping operations.
Are you searching for a yard ramp for your warehouse? East Coast Storage Equipment can help.
Buy confidently by shopping with a trusted name in the warehouse equipment industry. Contact our team of equipment experts to get started.