FREE Forklift Evaluation

When Should You Replace Your Forklift(s)?

When running an efficient operation, it’s important to keep in mind the right time to replace older, less efficient forklifts. This can reduce your maintenance costs, improve your productivity and most importantly, save money and maximize your return on investment..

Downtime can decrease profits and ultimately, your bottom line is affected, as costs increase due to maintenance when efficiency could be elevated. So how do you determine the right time to make a new, significant purchase?  Downtime, due to non-productivity of forklifts, results in a loss of income and should therefore be avoided if possible.

Forklift Life Span

Facilities tend to make the mistake of focusing on how long a forklift remains useful rather than focusing on its effectiveness. Some forklifts may remain useful for many years, however, these forklifts may no longer be a good economic investment. For every forklift, there is a limit to its economic effectiveness. At some point, the cost to maintain it exceeds the cost to replace it. It’s important to consider:

Cost of Maintenance

How much is each forklift in your fleet costing you to maintain?  How much money are you generating by using each forklift?  You’ll start to notice on your older machines that the cost to keep them running perfectly is getting higher and higher.  If one machine is consistently going over budget, that could be a sign that it is time to trade in and upgrade.

Downtime

The actual bill for the repairs is not the only money you’re spending when your forklifts are being repaired.  Every day that a truck is down, it isn’t generating the income that it could be generating for your business. The older it gets the more it will cost which means that the machine will be out of commission longer for more costly hours.

Value

How much your forklift is worth?  If it needs major repairs, would it be worth it to repair it, then sell it?  Should you sell it for parts?  Should you trade it in?  You can look around online to see what similar models in similar states are going for, which will help you make an informed decision.

These three considerations, combined, will give you an idea of when the optimal time to retire your forklift is.

Planned Replacement Is Key To Success

A key component of any successful fleet management program is planned replacement.  Substantial cost savings are available through the implementation of a fleet management program that incorporates the philosophy of planned fleet replacement once a unit has reached its optimal usefulness threshold.

In order to run an efficient and productive operation, the timely replacement of machinery is crucial. You can avoid costly maintenance procedures as well as loss of profits due to downtime and delays. By replacing your forklifts at the optimal economic time, productivity and profits can increase within your business.

For a FREE evaluation of your fleet contact KMH at: 888-564-7978 or use the link below for a free forklift quote / evaluation that only takes a couple minutes:

QUICK & FREE FORKLIFT QUOTE

 

Warehouse Systems

Maintain a Productive Warehouse

Productivity in the workplace doesn’t happen by accident. The most successful business owners will tell you it takes a team, procedures and the productive daily flow of your operation.

Here are five tips from Team KMH to add to your success:

Easy Systems

Regardless of whether you run a warehouse, shop, or office every business thrives on systems and procedures.  When, how and who in the organization can be contacted for your next move in a timely manner ups your efficiency and flow.  Timely movements of your needle change everything in a millisecond and with the world moving at the speed of light thanks to the internet efficient systems of communication are crucial to your success.

Warehouse Systems

Clear Lines of Communication

Clear communication amongst your team and management is also a sign of a business with the intention to succeed and excel at interpersonal excellence. It allows the most junior of employees have the opportunity to voice concerns or thoughts about the operation of the business. Good two-way communication has been shown to cut down on injuries, workplace mishaps, and business angst.

Communication

Build a Team

This helps them feel comfortable in the work environment and on the job. When you have a good culture with employees that fit, your turnover rate is lower. Developing a successful team over time is only possible if you retain their interest in companywide success – this lifts your top talent. Designing a system where employees routinely work together during these processes helps develop team chemistry. Each team member also develops a sense of commitment to the work place and the company’s bottom line

Team Building

Evolve & Grow

Once your team is formed and has reached an initial goal, raise the stakes. Look for a larger goal and encourage more complex approaches. The novelty of being on a team can wear off if the team performs in a repetitive way.

Evolve & Grow

Celebrate

One way to help a team stay strong is to celebrate victories. Pay for a night of celebration at a local restaurant or bar when your team reaches a goal. The sense of common accomplishment and shared congratulations can help a team bond.

Celebrate

6 Ways Accumulation Can Benefit your Material Handling Operation

Accumulation is becoming increasingly popular in automated solutions. This is primarily because of the numerous applications and benefits it creates in your operation. Zero-pressure accumulation conveyor works by using photoelectric intelligence to allow products to accumulate with—you guessed it—no pressure involved. Packages either rest gently against each other or have a small buffering space in between.

When planning an automated solution, accumulation can be critical to a smooth operation. The applications of this type of solution are vast, but they can also take time to understand—so why should you give accumulation a chance?

To Maximize Product Throughput

Not all of your production or warehouse processes take the same amount of time. In a non-accumulation system, when your downstream processes are taking longer than your upstream processes, automation equipment has to stop and wait. But, accumulation conveyors buffer and hold your product in place until downstream production equipment is ready, allowing your upstream processes to continue operating.  When upstream processes get to continue to run, you don’t have downstream equipment sitting idly. This means increased production and lower labor costs.

To Prevent Product Damage

When product begins to stack up on traditional conveyor, the buildup of pressure can be damaging to fragile or lighter cartons.  When tapered wall totes back up on other conveyor, they may buckle up and spill out over the guardrails, dumping contents onto the floor and causing both product damage and a unsafe work environment. Accumulation conveyor allows products to rest against each other with either minimum or zero pressure. That equates to less product damage and waste.

To Prevent Equipment Damage

Cartons or totes that back up on conveyors that are not zero-pressure can often create so much back pressure that in addition to damaging the carton or tote, it can also damage conveyor guardrails, belts, motors, reducers and motor starters. Zero-pressure conveyors not only eliminate that danger—they also utilize a “sleep” feature that allows the conveyor to shut down after a period of time of not sensing a product. This results in decreased roller wear, decreased electricity use, and decreased equipment wear.

To Maintain Product Sequencing

When conveying multiple sizes of cartons on the same conveyor, the smaller cartons may be pushed side-by-side. This causes your product to get out of sequence; that creates misreads at the scanner, missed diverts at the sorter and the potential for jamming in the curves. Zero-pressure conveyor eliminates side by side accumulation of smaller cartons and its associated issues.

To Increase Operator Productivity & Safety

When proper accumulation isn’t put in place, your operators have to regulate the processes themselves. To manually remove product, only to have to put it back into the production line later, takes operators away from their main job and decreases productivity. In short, it adds double and triple handling of the product, resulting in waste to the process and possibly creating more dangerous situations for your employees.  In addition, many new styles of zero pressure conveyor are much safer to work around than none zero pressure conveyors.

For Merge Control

With “intelligence” put in place with the photo-eyes, zero-pressure conveyors can be easily adapted for merge control. This kind of control operates much like cars at intersections with traffic lights, making sure no sideswipes or collisions take place. There are numerous ways to apply zero-pressure conveyor, and even more benefits to the user. Keeping your products, equipment, and employee’s safe is just the beginning of this popular solution.

http://blog.hytrol.com/thehytrolexperience/accumulation-manufacturing-benefits

Posted by Ivar Lonon – Hytrol

Forklift Rental Equipment

Cost-Effective Solutions – Rental & Leasing

When you rent instead of buy the savings are significant. Renting lowers maintenance costs, ensures reliable parts and service from us and we offer financing for you as well. Needing to replace or find new equipment can eat up a large portion of your budget. At KMH we offer financing to not only lower your operations cost per unit shipped, but also keep you at maximum up time. Equipment is a large investment to make and unfortunately, sometimes you make large equipment purchases only to find out the particular gear doesn’t fit your needs. We maintain a large fleet of rental units ready for quick delivery!

Renting or leasing creates a cost-effective solutions in the case you don’t want to invest the capital in new equipment or simply don’t have it. Also, if you only plan on using the equipment for a limited amount of time or just using it for a small project, renting or leasing the equipment will work in your favor. Keep in mind that renting is generally preferable when using equipment for short periods of time or if you want to avoid risks associated with breakdowns and maintenance. Additionally, renting equipment usually ensures access to the latest models and technologies due to KMH’s continual investments in our fleets.

Every business wants to lower their cost per unit shipped, and that’s our goal for you. Knowing the parameters and needs of our customers and having a fleet of equipment from forklifts to boom lifts to construction equipment allows us to be available 24/7 to meet your growing and changing needs.

Additionally, KMH maintains the unit, and you avoid the expense of upkeep. If a piece of machinery breaks down, KMH will fix it, and if the repair will take an extended amount of time, KMH will exchange the broken unit with a different one.

To learn more about our Rental Program visit our links below. We offer short term, long term and rent to own programs to fit your needs:

Equipment Rentals:
http://www.kmhsystems.com/service-solutions/equipment-rentals/

Heavy Equipment Rentals:
http://tuffequipco.com/equipment-rentals/

Call 888-564-7978 for all rental pricing & availability or please fill-out the form below!

Autonomous Robots

Autonomous Robots Are Changing The Way We Build And Move Products Around The World

Jan 17, 2016 by Jim Rock – Jim Rock is the CEO at Seegrid

Many eyes may be gazing toward the sky in anxious anticipation of new drone delivery systems, but an increasing number of intelligent robot systems is already on the ground, in warehouses and manufacturing facilities, helping to manufacture and move products across the globe.

These automated systems, which employ the world’s most innovative advancements in software, artificial intelligence and machine learning, are transforming the core process of how each and every product is produced and delivered.

Beyond amazing developments within robotics, we need to recognize the equally significant advancements in machine vision that are driving the vast applications transforming industries today. Vision guided vehicles (VGVs) are becoming more necessary to transport heavy loads autonomously and ensure two-day, next-day and same-day deliveries. We’re seeing deployment of VGVs throughout manufacturing and advanced fulfillment facilities across multiple industries, including automotive, industrial product development and retail.

In this post, we’ll explore three companies set to make waves in the near future for the autonomous robot industry. As a pioneer of 3D vision technology for warehouses and fulfillment centers, we’re excited to see how these new innovations will improve and streamline supply chains.

Starship’s ground drone

Starship Technologies, the new venture by Skype co-founders Ahti Heinla and Janus Friis, is introducing autonomous robots to a street corner near you. Designed to address the “last mile” — the notoriously difficult final leg of the delivery process — the Starship bots will deliver groceries and small packages to suburban homes.

Operating autonomously 99 percent of the time, each robot uses high-resolution navigation software to pinpoint its location, and a camera and radar to avoid obstacles. The mini-fridge-sized vehicles will have speakers and microphones to chat with humans, and their six-wheel treads can even climb small staircases.

The firm will launch a beta program in Greenwich, London and in the U.S., so keep an eye out for these robots scooting around our sidewalks soon.

Tally, the retail robot

Don’t be surprised if sometime in the near future, as you urge your shopping cart around the busy aisle at your local grocery store, you come face to face with a tall, cylindrical robot, quietly scanning the shelves as it zips noiselessly past you.

That’s the future envisioned by Simbe Robotics, a Silicon Valley startup whose robot, cutely named Tally, monitors grocery story inventory, ensuring that items are properly stocked, in the correct section and priced accurately. A single Tally robot, moving four feet at a time and pausing to take a hi-res photograph, can scan more than 15,000 items per hour.

We no longer need to look to the skies for the next wave of robotics to transform our world: They’re already at our feet.

Although Tally can’t rectify the errors it spots, it does send the data it captures to the cloud for processing, then presents recommendations to retailers through a mobile app.

The real winning element here is that, like our VGVs, Tally does not need special store infrastructure to do its job, and can function safely amongst customers and staff during business hours. And like iRobot’s Roomba, it will return to its charging dock when running low on power.

Swarms of farming bots

With the human population steadily increasing, our ability to efficiently grow, harvest and distribute food is now a global issue. The world’s agricultural industry will need to feed 9 billion people by 2050, which is why David Dorhour, an Iowa inventor, is working on a swarm of robots that could revolutionize the agricultural industry.

Prospero, the name for the initial prototype, is a small, six-legged bot that, when joined with hundreds of other identical bots, will form a swarm of farming robots that can quickly and accurately plant acres of land. Prospero requires no GPS or complex vision software — it sees only what is directly beneath it. If it detects a patch of soil with no seed, it plants one at a precise depth, sprays it with a preprogrammed amount of fertilizer and nutrients, covers the seed and marks the spot with a shot of fluid, which lets other robots know that this small area is already planted. When the swarm is at full force, all the robots will be planting simultaneously.

Each Prospero bot will have radio communication, so if one comes across a large section of dirt with no seeds, it can signal others to come help; similarly, if it finds a patch that is planted too densely, it will let its fellow bots know to work elsewhere.

By programming the robots to use simple communication instead of constantly monitoring each other’s locations, Dorhour cuts down on the computing power needed and makes the system more feasible for users in rural areas. And the swarming technology provides farmers with the ultimate control: While agriculture today happens at the field-by-field level, with these robots, farmers could make plant-by-plant decisions.

We no longer need to look to the skies for the next wave of robotics to transform our world: They’re already at our feet.

For some, the notion that intelligent machines will play a formidable role in the economy of the future is worrisome. Martin Ford, in his book Rise of the Robots: Technology and the Threat of a Jobless Future, predicts a dark and radical shift in the labor force as human workers are muscled out of their professions by cheaper, smarter robots.

While it’s true that tomorrow’s industries will likely look quite different than they do today, I anticipate a workplace where humans and robots work in collaboration. Researchers from Boston University seem to agree. Robots are incredibly proficient at performing repetitive and routine tasks, but there is simply no replacement for human creativity, empathy and intellect.

As we begin 2016, we should embrace the automation technology that helps us move goods around the planet — and look forward to a future where robots make all our jobs less mundane.

http://techcrunch.com/2016/01/17/autonomous-robots-are-changing-the-way-we-build-and-move-products-around-the-world

KMH Systems Inc

New Year Profit Methods

If your organization needs help taking lost revenue back from unseen costs here are 10 strategies you can start to employ today that will provide a payoff.

Training

Labor is the largest cost in a non-automated warehouse, training with regular discussions, both in terms of improving productivity, reduces errors and damage.

Lower Inventory Holding Costs

Increase space through narrow aisle handling equipment, mezzanines, layout, or more appropriate storage modes.

Reduce Lead Times

Any reduction in lead time provides a one-time, permanent reduction in cycle stock inventory.

Don’t Stock It

If you don’t need it on a regular basis don’t stock it. With shipping at an all-time fast rate and lower cost don’t hold your money in inventory you don’t regularly ship or use.

Reduce Touches

Do product flow and order flow no longer make sense and crisscross the floor? Take a fresh look at the physical processes and steps involved in product flow and order fulfillment. Generally speaking, less steps equal fewer touches equal lower costs.

Maximize Vertical Space

Where space can be limited, it’s important to take advantage of every inch of available space (floor to ceiling). Vertical solutions can lead to safer working conditions as well as increased efficiency in the warehouse. Doing so increases ergonomic benefits and drives greater efficiency and productivity in everyday work.

Packing Options

Researching bulk purchases of all your packaging and material needs can lower your annual costs. Utilize the internet to compare costs, sales and quantity savings will lower your cost per unit shipped without changing your sale price of your product.

Inventory Management

Schedule a FREE Operational Audit and get a second opinion on your inventory management. KMH can give you a look at all the ways you can lower your costs, increase your productivity and leverage your uptimes.

Vendor Management

Insist on costs, terms, and conditions with vendors that make sense for your company. Create a vendor sheet that you can easily reference as a reminder of the vendors you prefer. Your vendor information could include sales, margin, on-time delivery, significant problems, etc. Review it several times a year.

Liquidate

Reduce slow selling stock as close to in-season as possible to gain a higher cost recovery.

Call 888-564-7978 for your free operational audit so we can help you work smart and increase profits!

Request Your FREE Operational Audit…

Warehouse Resolutions

6 Warehouse New Year’s Resolutions

When you’re thinking about what you’d like to do in 2016, here are 5 resolutions KMH can help you keep and profit from for the whole year. When it comes to your warehouse operation, since you work on it all day, every day, the New Year is a good time to look at improvements you can make.

Work Safer

Accidents happen often enough, since there are tens of thousands of these types of collisions–and serious injuries–every year. Have a plan, it should be enforced by clear rules, and by training. Accidents are costly in too many ways and are truly worth an ounce of prevention for a smooth day and year.

Analyze & Consolidate

From an order picking standpoint, if you aren’t automated, the reality is that you should look to reduce steps more than eliminating them. To do this, logical inventory slotting is critical. Can items that are often shipped together be stored together in flow storage, shelves, or racks? Can items that are very high volume be stored at the most convenient place? Can items that are required in terms of an assembly or manufacturing process be slotted beside each other in storage positions? One common method is to replace static storage with carton flow, since gravity flow uses floor space more efficiently. Be sure to plan for flexibility and scalability so you can adjust as you grow.

Consider Automation

You can leverage a tremendous amount of time savings by implementing carousels, conveyors, or other automated solutions that let people work. KMH can perform a free Operational Audit to show you ways to save by implementing simple and even dynamic conveyor and automation systems that lower your cost per unit shipped.

Increase your ROI

You can lower your operational costs by letting us help you review and understand your investment into every stick of equipment, every piece of software, and every person working in your facility. You can stop making decisions on initial purchase price, and work toward making decisions on the full cost of ownership.

Leverage Your Operational Costs

Electrical usage & pneumatics usage are going to factor heavily in your up time. Utilizing the right drives, motors, and reducers can significantly reduce cost over time. Turning off the lights is a simple “no brainer” to lowering your electric bill over the course of the year as well. Regular maintenance of heating, ventilation, cooling, and refrigeration systems if you have them—including changing filters regularly—is important for good operation and to avoid wasting energy.

Upgrade To More Efficient Lighting

Lighting is typically one of the largest consumers of energy in a warehouse; accordingly, it often can represent the best opportunities for savings. KMH can help you find lighting savings by installing the most appropriate lighting technology and showing you how to control it effectively. If you are planning to install new lighting technology, our reps can perform a lighting survey and present you with all the options you need for saving and the money you will save on the change.

Call 888-564-7978 for your free operational audit so we can help you keep everyone safe.

Request Your FREE Operational Audit…

Forklift Daily Maintenance Checklist

DID YOU KNOW THAT O.S.H.A. REQUIRES A DAILY OR PRE-SHIFT INSPECTION OF EVERY FORKLIFT BEFORE IT IS PLACED IN OPERATION

But you may ask yourself “What specifically are my operators to check for?”

For your convenience, we have provided a sample daily or pre-shift checklist for your use which outlines items to be inspected. Of course, depending on your application, you may find it useful to include other items.

[button link=”http://www.kmhsystems.com/pdfs/KMH-Daily-Forklift-Checklist-Gas-LPG-Diesel.pdf” size=”medium” color=”blue” target=”blank”]LPG Daily Checklist[/button]

[button link=”http://www.kmhsystems.com/pdfs/KMH-Daily-Forklift-Checklist-Electric.pdf” size=”medium” color=”blue” target=”blank”]Electric Daily Checklist[/button]

Even if a forklift is not in use on a particular day or shift, it’s worthwhile to note that for future reference. If an O.S.H.A. inspection ever occurred, there would be no gaps in the operation history of that lift truck.

Remember though that ALL forklift operators must be authorized and properly trained in safe operation. This is the employer’s responsibility and SuperTech can provide this necessary and O.S.H.A. safety training at your facility.

Also ensure that your personnel have read the Operators Manual carefully and made themselves familiar with the lift truck. Remind operators to wear their seatbelt too! Forklift trucks are particularly susceptible to tipovers. Seatbelt use is also enforced by OSHA.

OSHA REQUIREMENTS

OSHA requires a pre-shift inspection of all lift trucks before they are placed into service. Employers must be certain that no condition exists that might adversely affect the safety of the truck. If problems are found, they must be reported and the truck should be taken out of service immediately for repair. A “Warning: Do NOT Operate” Tag should be affixed to the truck, and not removed until the necessary repairs have been made.

Since pre-shift inspection is an OSHA requirement, it is important for the employer to be prepared to document that these inspections have been made on a regular basis. Review OSHA 1910.178(q)(7) and 1910.178(p)(1).

Does your forklift need parts or service? Reach out to us using the form below and we will get you all fixed up!

KMH Black November

Black Friday Deals All Month Long!

Shopping online with KMH Systems is easy, and you can order various items you need right away without having to make multiple orders.We pride ourselves on lowering your cost per unit shipped, and online orders is one of the ways KMH can help you manage your time efficiently. Placing orders with multiple vendors can be a hassle, one stop shopping for all your needs is a wiser use of your valuable time.

Everything you need to make moving in your facility easier – from Overload bypass, reinforced forks, with rubber-coated handle Trucks, Pallet 2-stage or 3-stage telescoping masts and lift heights to Fully powered to electric pallet truck for easy and quick operation and hand trucks.

Easily store and access these simple, affordable and necessary hand trucks to make jobs easier for your team and your budget. Heavy duty, steel and folding hand trucks get the job done and keep costs down.

With a detailed list of sizes and differentials when you know what you want you can find what you need in our online catalog and order your dock equipment in a matter of minutes.

Get organized fast -in any way you prefer. From Stationary shelving to mobile carts and bin systems. Vertical organization is a great way to utilize whatever floor space you have.

Safety first. You can build a guard rail of almost any shape or size for protecting vehicles and people from heading in the wrong direction. Corner protectors, aisle barriers and even floor mounted rail guards are quickly shipped right to your door.

Efficient and convenient work tables can be strategically placed throughout your operation to give your team easy access to work benches to get tasks done without spending walking across the facility. Sorting, mailing, working and any bench or table that brings more flow to your operation  is available at your fingertips.

Convenient and hassle free – so you can focus on what is really important to you and your business.

KMH combines everything you need into one easy catalog for you to be able to easily browse through dozens of different products you need with ease and you can shop from anywhere, any time.  We have the variety you need and want at your fingertips and you can track your order after it is placed.


 

LED Light Retrofit

We have helped hundreds of facilities and business owners save up to 70% in energy costs a year. The lights require virtually no tools for an energy-efficient retrofit. It’s more efficient and bright and will work up to 375,000 hours!

Install in approximately 1 Minute requiring virtually no tools for an energy-efficient retrofit. It’s more efficient and bright and will work up to 375,000 hours!

NO Maintenance

NO Tools Required For Install, Service, Or Adjustments

Learn how easy and fast it is by watching the video above, then get in touch with your local KMH Systems Representative by calling or using the form below…

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