Material handling equipment refers to a variety of tools and machinery used to move, store, control, and protect goods, products, and materials throughout the manufacturing, distribution, consumption, and disposal process. They are essential for efficient operations in industries like manufacturing, warehousing, and construction. Keep reading to learn about different types of material handling equipment, the benefits this offers you, and tips on choosing the right material handling equipment for your business.
Types of Material Handling Equipment
There are four primary types of material handling equipment: storage, engineered systems, industrial trucks, and bulk material handling.
- Storage and Handling Equipment: These include racks, shelves, bins, and drawers used for storing items when they are not in transit. This category also includes pallets and stacking frames for high-density storage.
- Engineered Systems: These are typically automated units that work in unison in a warehouse setting. Conveyor systems, automated storage and retrieval systems (AS/RS), and robotic delivery systems are some examples of engineered systems.
- Industrial Trucks: This category encompasses all powered and non-powered transport equipment, such as forklifts, pallet jacks, and hand trucks. They help in the movement and transport of goods across short distances.
- Bulk Material Handling Equipment: These machines handle and move loose materials in bulk like liquids, granules, or particles. Examples include conveyor belts, stackers, bucket elevators, and silos.
Benefits of Material Handling Equipment
The main benefits of material handling equipment are efficiency, safety, and cost-effectiveness:
- Efficiency: Material handling equipment increases productivity by allowing quicker movement of goods, thus accelerating the production or distribution process.
- Safety: By automating the handling process, material handling equipment reduces the risk of injuries related to manual handling, making the workplace safer.
- Cost Effectiveness: Over time, the use of this equipment can reduce labor costs and increase profit margins as tasks are completed more quickly and with less manpower.
Choosing the Right Material Handling Equipment
Selecting the right material handling equipment depends on the specific requirements of your operation. Consider the following factors:
Type and Characteristics of Materials
Different materials require different types of handling equipment. Fragile items may require equipment that can handle them with care, while bulky or heavy items may need robust machinery.
The nature of your operations, such as the volume of goods and the speed at which they need to be moved, will affect your choice.
The physical constraints of your facility, like the amount of available space and the layout, will also influence the type of equipment you can use.
With careful consideration of your operational needs and constraints, you can select the material handling equipment that best suits your business. It is advisable to consult with a material handling equipment specialist to ensure your equipment meets all your operational requirements.
For more info about material handling equipment, contact a local company.