Loading Dock Energy Conservation: How to Save Money on Your Energy Bills

December 12, 2017

Are you struggling to reduce your warehouse energy bills, especially during the winter? If so, you’re not alone. Many business owners find it particularly challenging to conserve energy on the loading dock.

There are things you can do to make your loading dock more energy-efficient even when the doors are closed. A couple of ideas include increasing insulation around loading dock shelters and adequately sealing any gaps.

How Insufficient Dock Seals Cost You Money

If you see any white space at the loading dock that’s not a window, you can bet you’re losing heated or cooled air through it. Imagine the escaping air in the form of dollar bills, and you’ll see firsthand why it’s important to seal all the gaps and cracks around your loading docks. In some cases, gaps between the loading dock pit wall and leveler can become as large as 12 square inches. You can imagine the impact gaps this large can have on your heating bill in the winter.

Fortunately, you can rectify the problem with the help of quality loading dock seals. By completely sealing off your loading dock shelters and eliminating white space, you can prevent cooled or heated air from escaping and save a significant amount on your utility bills. Installing adequate weather seals may also help you meet energy code requirements for commercial spaces.

Common Types of Seals

There are a variety of loading dock seal types from which you can choose. A few of the top options include:

  • Weather seals
  • Loading dock seals
  • Under-leveler seals

All three types are designed to help reduce or eliminate small gaps around the loading dock opening to minimize the escape of warm air. They also block out cold winter air to keep your loading dock at a consistent temperature and reduce your heat bill in the winter.

Weather seals come in a variety of sizes and materials. Dock weather seals are specifically designed to cover the gaps between the concrete loading dock pit wall and the leveler. They also close the gaps on the sides, top and bottom of your overhead doors. By some estimates, weather seals pay for themselves within four months.

Loading dock seals cover the sides and top of the loading dock opening. They are designed to fit over the openings very tightly to keep hot air from escaping and cold air from entering the building.

Under-leveler seals fit snugly against the pit floor and prevent energy loss by reducing gaps and cutting back on heat transfer through the leveler deck. They also prevent infiltration of outdoor dust and debris. With the help of an under-leveler sealer, you could potentially save as much as $200-$900 on annual energy costs per dock position. Typical return on investment is around 6-18 months.

Tired of losing all your money through your loading dock? If so, it may be time to invest in some quality loading dock seals from W.E. Carlson. You’ll not only be more successful at keeping cold air out, but will also reduce the amount of warm air that escapes from your building. The end result is a more efficient loading dock that can help you save hundreds of dollars on your heating bill every winter.

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