Drum Handling Equipment Pays For Itself Over Time
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Drum Handling Equipment Pays For Itself Over Time

Many companies involved in heavy industry use 55-gallon drums for moving waste and storing raw materials. Drum handling equipment is rapidly emerging as a crucial element when it comes to workplace safety and efficiency in settings where cumbersome and/or hazardous drums, barrels, paper rolls, and cable rolls are a main component in the work being done by employees.


Drum Handlers: Types And Uses

There are several different types of drum handlers, including:

  • Forklift attachment drum handler
  • Mobile drum handler
  • Drum rotator
  • Below- hook drum handler
  • Specialty drum handlers

Most drum handlers are selected based on the functions they will need to preform, which include:

  • Tilting
  • Pouring
  • Mixing
  • Emptying/draining
  • Lifting up and down
  • Moving from site to site

Forklift drum handlers use the forklift’s hydraulics to raise and lower drums and the forklift itself to move drums from site to site.

Mobile operated drum handlers use hydraulic cylinders mounted on the actual lifter; some of these can include a tilting feature and some just go up and down and can be used to manually move drums from site to site.

Drum rotators can be electric or hydraulic and are mainly used for content transfers -and- rotation and inversion of drums.

Below-hook is usually a hydraulic-powered lifter with a chain puller and can tilt and pour drums in addition to lifting and moving them.

There are also specialty drum handlers that are usually specially ordered to be equipped with industry-specific features, such as spark resistance or caustic substance resistance.


Benefits To Drum Handlers

Drum handling equipment is specially designed to make the movement and work concerning heavy drums as effortless, safe, and time efficient as possible. The long-term benefits include:

  • Greater workplace safety with less accident and incidents related to stress injuries and improper handling accidents, which in turn reduces injury claims and time off from work and instills confidence among employees.
  • Improved quality of product with lesser risk of product damage during movement and handling.
  • Workers can maximize their work output through faster handling.
  • Eliminates the physical strength and endurance that would otherwise be required for a worker to manually handle drums.

Selecting A Drum Handler

Drum handlers range in cost and quality – from expensive customized strong-arm automatic fork-mounts to a more basic and affordable trolley option that’s operated manually. That said, most suppliers warranty their products and will provide in-house consultations or demonstrations to help buyers decide what options best accommodate their needs and budget. Some suppliers and manufacturers even offer training videos and seminars for employees to learn how to properly use the equipment.

Before purchasing a drum handler, consider the following factors:

  • Type of drum– plastic, fiber, metal
  • Size of drum – weight and dimensions
  • Drum’s contents
  • Tightness of space the handler will be working
  • Floor lift required
  • Dumping and/or lifting height
  • Capacity - number and frequency of drums to be handled
  • The work to be done concerning the drum - lift, move, empty, etc..

In conclusion, investing in a drum handler is something that every employer with drums should consider. According to OSHA, drum handlers are proven to improve workplace safety in handling hazardous, heavy drums through minimizing the amount of actual physical handling done by employees. Of course, improved workplace safety has an array of subsequent effects, such as fewer employee absences, fewer worker’s compensation claims, improved employee morale, and more efficient productivity. Over time, a drum handler is an investment that more than pays for itself.

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