Blog

3 Reasons You Should Consider Fixing Industrial Equipment that Isn’t Broken

racking

A couple of weeks ago, our service crew installed new racking in our warehouse. At first, I was a little confused by this. What's wrong with our current racking? Why did we need to get new racking? Did something happen that I didn't know about? After asking these questions, I found out that we were just upgrading our racking system. But if it isn't broken....why would we need to fix it?

 

Whether it’s performing preventative maintenance on equipment or replacing equipment entirely, here are three reasons why either of those decisions can be more beneficial for your company in the long run:

Safety

Just because equipment looks safe on the outside, it doesn’t mean it’s actually safe to use! Racking in particular often gets dinged up by fork trucks and other equipment. This can really affect the structural integrity of the racking system.

You never want to put your employees in a position where they can get injured. So doing racking inspections and having preventative maintenance performed on doors and truck and loading dock equipment is a must!

Efficiency

Newer racking systems and truck and loading dock equipment are built to be more efficient for the end user. One of the reasons we replaced our racking system in our warehouse was because the loading and unloading from the rack was more efficient than the previous racking system. Efficiency leads to happier employees and higher productivity.

Productivity

It's simple. New equipment that is easier to use will increase your productivity and thus, your profits.

Contact us for a rack inspection or to set up preventative/scheduled maintenance today!

3 Ways to Keep Your Business Safe During a Pandemic

It is an unprecedented time in our culture and we're all doing the best we can to stay safe and healthy. Here are 3 cost effective ways to keep a virus at bay.

Driver Access Cages

Driver Access Cages not only increase security within your warehouse, but they act as a barrier, preventing truck drivers, delivery people and other non-employees from entering your building without permission. Failing to restrict building access is a huge potential risk for accidents in your facility, especially if they are not a trained employee. Driver Access Cages also protect your inventory. Many companies now have protocols and procedures in place for checking visitors in order to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Driver Access Cages are a great place to start!

Ray-Air Fans

Studies have show that COVID-19 can last several hours, if not days, on hard surfaces. The virus can only last about 3 hours in the air. A good solution would be to keep the air flow going! Ray-Air uses patented air movement technology to increase Air Turnovers per Hour (ATPH). In addition to purifying the air, it is also energy efficient and it keeps your space at consistent temperatures.

Janitorial Cabinets

Although this product might not help you prevent the spread of a virus directly, it will definitely help keep you sane by keeping you clean and organized! We have a variety of cabinets for different purposes, but our janitorial cabinets are great for storing cleaning products and chemicals.
janitorial storage cabinet

Reminder - We ARE a Critical Business!

Service Techs

We keep your business up and running

Barron Equipment & Overhead Doors is considered a critical business because we provide equipment and service to critical businesses. If you are in need of either equipment or service, do not hesitate to reach out. We are in this together!

Click the button below for more information about our products and services.

Special Announcement Regarding COVID-19

2019BarronLogo

STILL RESPONSIBLY OPEN FOR BUSINESS

Dear Valued Customer,
Given global concerns regarding the Coronavirus (COVID-19), we wanted to personally reach out and share the extra precautions Barron Equipment and Overhead Doors is taking to keep our customers and employees safe and allow them to have confidence in Barron Equipment and Overhead Doors.

For more than 40 years, Barron Equipment and Overhead Doors has had a safety program in place to not only provide ongoing OSHA and safety training to employees, but also to coordinate health and safety procedures throughout both of our locations.

We are carefully monitoring the recommendations of governmental health agencies, such as the Center for Disease Control (CDC) and local health organizations, and we have further elevated our stringent cleaning and sanitation protocol. Here are some examples of what we are doing:
  • Disinfecting high-touch hard surfaces throughout the our buildings
  • Increasing the deployment of anti-bacterial hand sanitizers within our office and warehouse spaces
  • Educating our staff on COVID-19 symptoms as well as preventative measures
  • Instructing employees to wash their hands a minimum of hourly, which has been proven by the CDC to be the most effective preventative measure
  • Mandating that employees who are not feeling well, stay home to prevent the spread of germs

There is no denying that COVID-19 has had an impact on our communities. Rest assured, Barron Equipment is taking the proper precautions as this situation evolves. We will continue monitoring the situation closely, keeping safety top priority and following the recommendations provided by the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Centers for Disease Control (CDC).

We are still here when you need us. If your equipment is down, even after-hours, our service team is available to help keep your operation running. The most important thing is to keep our team safe while still supporting all the needs of our customers.

Thank you for your long-term trust in Barron Equipment and Overhead Doors. Our dedicated employees and customers have been at the center of our business since we opened our first location in 1979, and we remain committed to offering you a safe and enjoyable environment.

Thank you for being our loyal customer,
Pete Loken, President
Steve Joslin, Vice President

Why the Insulation of Your Garage Door Matters

Carriage House Garage doors

When you’re buying a new garage door for your home or business, it’s sometimes tempting to go with the cheaper option. But what if you were aware of all of the benefits of garage door insulation? Would you upgrade to a door with a higher R value? What type of insulation would you choose? Let’s dive into that a little bit and give you some information about why insulation matters.

 

THE BIGGEST AREA OF HEAT LOSS IS YOUR GARAGE

 

inside garage door

It’s a proven fact! With an insulated garage door, you can increase energy efficiency and ensure that you’re not paying extra for your heat in the winter. Not only does insulation help from preventing heat from escaping, but it also prevents hot air from getting into your garage during the warmer months.

 

Quieter garage door = happy family & happy neighbors

 

neighborhood

Okay, I will admit, this isn’t a proven fact. But it makes sense, right? If you’ve ever come home to a sleeping baby and had to quickly close the man door to your garage so that the noisy garage door won’t wake up the baby, then you know what I’m talking about! You also wouldn’t want to be those people in the neighborhood who have the loudest garage door on the block. Insulation can help with this! Studies have shown that insulated garage doors are about 3 times quieter than non-insulated garage doors.

The R-value is what is used to measure the transmission of heat

 

brown garage door

If you’re shopping for garage doors, you’ll want to know what “R-value” means. The R-value refers to the transmission of heat. Garage doors with a higher R-value have a slower transmission of heat. Which ultimately means you will have less warm air escaping your garage door when it’s cold outside and less heat trying to get through your garage door in the summer time. The R-value (ranging from 6.3 to 20.4) can be determined based on the material/type of insulation and the thickness of the door. Again, if you’re going to reap the benefits of an insulated door, you will want to look for a mid to high range R-value.

Poly-what?

 

There are two main types of garage door insulation – polystyrene and polyurethane. Both are great, but it’s good to know the difference.

Polystyrene is what you’ll typically find at your major retail stores. Rigid panels of polystyrene are put in between the steel. While this is more energy efficient than a door without any insulation, it’s still not quite as efficient as a door insulated with polyurethane.

Why is that? Polyurethane is a foam that is injected in between the steel layers. Because it is foam, and not rigid panels, it reaches all those gaps that the polystyrene cannot.

Both Polystyrene and Polyurethane are great choices for insulating your garage door. But if you want the ultimate energy efficiency, you’d want to go with Polyurethane.

 

Polystyrene insulation
polyurethane insulation

At Barron Equipment & Overhead Doors, we have a wide selection of doors that have low R-values to high R-values, as well as doors insulated with Polystyrene and Polyurethane.

In fact, for the months of January and February, we are having a promotion on all of R 9 and R 18.4 doors!

 

January Resi Email Banner

For more information, give us a call today!

 

Celebrating 40 Years of Excellence

40th Anniversary Email Banner

Barron Equipment & Overhead Doors is celebrating 40 years of excellence in the Material Handling industry as of December 2019.

Barb and Ron Modjeska originally founded Barron Equipment in Davenport, IA, December 15, 1979. In the past 40 years, we have upgraded our Davenport location to a larger building off of Brady Street, grown our team to 60 strong, added another location in Des Moines, IA, and increased our business to accommodate cities and states all across the United States.

Here is a timeline of the most notable events over the last 40 years:

Barron History Timeline

An interview with the original owners of Barron - Barb & Ron Modjeska

What did you do before you started Barron?

"We both worked at Material Handling in Bettendorf, Iowa."

Why did you decide to start Barron?

"I wanted to set up a separate division at Material Handling selling everything but forklifts, we called them allied lines.  These included dock equipment, conveyors, storage rack, etc.  The owner of Material Handling didn’t think there was enough money in allied lines, so he didn’t see the need. I didn’t like selling forklifts, so I quit and started Barron."

How many employees did you have in the beginning?

"Just the two of us."

What are some of the challenges you faced with starting a company?

"The recession in the early 1980’s.  The area lost about 20,000 manufacturing jobs,  J.I. Case closed in Bettendorf and Rock Island, Caterpillar closed in Bettendorf and Mt. Joy, and John Deere cut way back."

How were you able to overcome the challenges you faced from local manufacturing companies making cuts during the recession?

"When the economy was so bad, we made a greater effort and made more calls. We also had to adjust our income down."

What was your biggest accomplishment over the 23+ years of owning Barron?

"Over the 23+ years, the fact that we developed a good reputation and gained great lines of products. The best part was that we hired great employees, and kept them."

If you could go back and change anything, would you? If so, what would it be?

"Not one thing!"

What advice do you have for the current owners of Barron?

"They’ve done an outstanding job!  Just treat your employees well and the rest will come."

Barb Ron
Larry Pete Barb Ron
Pete Steve
Barron Anniversary Logo

What is Barron up to now?

Cultivating Corporate Culture

Family, food, and fun are some words that our employees would use to describe Barron. While several of our team members are related, once you're a part of the Barron team, you become family! We enjoy having our monthly Barron employee cookouts where we get to know each other and enjoy some good food. We also take part in other fun events such as baseball games, concerts, bowling, etc.

Nate Mike Steve
Award from Poweramp

Expanding Influence

With two locations, we are looking at expanding our brand not only throughout the Midwest, but throughout the whole country. We have found that even though we're a smaller, local company, we have the potential to become a nationwide brand. Our dedication to our customers and our ability to find custom solutions are what sets us apart from other material handling companies.

Working Together as a Team

Teamwork makes the dreamwork! As cliché as that phrase is, we've found it to be true. We are a sales driven organization, but we recognize the importance of each and every employee and how we can all work together to achieve a common goal. By investing in software and programs that allow for greater communication amongst departments, we've found our team cohesiveness has improved. We are excited to ring in new year and the new decade with a strong focus on team work and an emphasis on servant leadership.

Barron leaders
Team Pic of people whove beenat barron for 10 years
Full team at 40th anniversary
Pete Steve with cake

Cheers to Many More Years!

We are so thankful to be able to celebrate our 40th anniversary in December of 2019. It has taken a lot of hard work, perseverance and team work to get to where we are today. We are excited to be able to grow our business and reach new markets. Special thank you to all of our loyal customers who have made us as successful as we are today.

Blast From the Past

Addition on the Old Tremont Building
Brad Clevenger
Celebrating a Birthday
Installing a Dock Lift
Eugene Tawney
Installing a Dock Lift
Installing a Pit Mounted Lift Table
Larry in the Pit
Larry Venden & Chris Clevenger
Old Barron Truck
Unloading a Dock Leveler
Installing a Pit Mounted Lift Table
Young Larry Venden
Chris Clevenger
Brad Clevenger & Lee Bower
Barron Circa 2012

4 Reasons to Get a Barron Calendar

Product Calendar Image
Caster Calendar

Lots of companies come out with their own calendars. Whether it's poster-style, pocket calendars, or flip-book style, they all do the same thing – tell you the date. So why would you need one from Barron Equipment & Overhead Doors? Here are 4 reasons why!

1. It's functional

Calendars are great to look at, but they're meant to be used! Scribble in appointments, meetings, events, birthdays, you name it. The best calendars are the ones that can be personalized for your needs. Our new style of calendar is a flip book style that allows big enough spaces to write information in for each day. This creates the perfect amount of functionality for our calendars.

calendar image

 

2. It's informational

showroom casters

Lots of people wonder what we do at Barron Equipment & Overhead Doors. Basically, if it's in your warehouse, it's in our wheelhouse! The Barron Product calendar features a different product group every month with information and pictures. The Barron Caster calendar does the same, but with caster specific information. Both are great for expanding your product knowledge of the material handling industry and understanding what Barron has to offer.

 

3. Deals on deals!

It wouldn't be fun if we weren't giving anything away! We have a variety of offers each month of the calendar. Some of these offers on the product calendar include: 15% off scheduled maintenance, 10% off residential garage door openers, free rack inspections, etc. The caster calendar offers 20% off of your first online caster order. All of these amazing offers add up to over $1,000 worth of deals.

Liftmaster 8355W 267 Garage Door Opener

 

4. It's FREE!

happy employee

Did we mention both of these calendars are free? That's right! Over $1,000 worth of deals for free! Order yours today by clicking one of the buttons below, or email us for more information.

3 Reasons Why You Should Schedule an Ergonomic Walkthrough

ergo walkthrough

Ergonomics are somewhat of a buzzword in this day and age in the manufacturing industry. Ergonomics can be defined as the study of people’s efficiency in their working environment. Ensuring your factory/warehouse is ergonomically friendly is important, not only for safety, but also for increased productivity and profits.

Here are 3 reasons you should schedule an ergonomic walkthrough with us:

 

1. Prevent injuries

employee with hurt back

Our team can review how your employees are performing their jobs and point out potential hazards with their processes. Some processes may seem fine in the moment, but with repetitive movements come chronic injuries. Our specialists have an eye for movements that may seem harmless, but could become a problem in the future.

 

2. Increase Efficiency

palletpal

Ensuring your work space is ergonomically friendly can help with efficiency. For example, if your employee is bending down to pick up boxes off of a pallet on the ground, it may take him a while to get the job done. If he had a PalletPal 360, the employee won’t have to bend down or take extra steps to get the boxes because the PalletPal will automatically adjust to the correct height depending on the load and will spin to make unloading quicker and more efficient. We all know time is money! So by making this process more efficient, you will be saving time and increasing productivity – therefore increasing sales. Our team can look at your current equipment and make recommendations for equipment that will make the job easier and more efficient.

 

3. Improve Employee Morale

happy employee

By ensuring that employees are safe from recurring, chronic injuries and increasing their efficiency in the workplace, you’ll have happier employees! Happier employees reduces turnover, which will help save you money because those employees will stay with your company longer and you won’t have to train new employees. Loyal, hardworking employees can be hard to find. You want to make sure you’re fostering a healthy environment to keep your best employees happy and fulfilled in the workplace.

 

Ergonomics should be an important aspect of your business. If you haven’t been making ergonomics a priority, we can help! Give us a call or fill out the form on this page to schedule your complimentary ergonomic walkthrough today!

 

5 Reasons to get Polyurethane Wheels on your Casters

Polyurethane wheels

Let’s start off by discussing what casters are and how they are used. The official definition of a “caster” is a wheeled device typically mounted to a larger object that enables that object to roll relatively easily. Heavy duty casters are often used in an industrial setting, such as in factories or warehouses. You may have seen medium to light duty casters used on everyday items, such as a shopping carts or TV stands.

“What’s the difference between casters and wheels?” you might be wondering. The short answer is that wheels were invented over 5,000 years ago and we’re pretty accustomed to seeing them around, pun intended. The difference between a wheel and a caster is that wheels are part of the caster. A caster includes the wheel, along with a bracket, which is often-times called a “fork.” Casters are more versatile and have only been around for about 150 years.

Apex wheels on cart

Casters can be used for many different applications within an industrial setting. There are different types of options and combinations when it comes to choosing the caster material, bearing type, size of the caster and the wheel type. While there are several options on the market, we’re going to explain today while polyurethane is one of the best materials for the wheels on your casters.

polyurethane chemical compounds

Because we like to define everything, here’s the fascinating definition for “polyurethane” - a synthetic resin in which the polymer units are linked by urethane groups, used chiefly as constituents of paints, varnishes, adhesives, and foams. Super scientific, right?

Let’s break it down for you! Here are 5 reasons why polyurethane is one of the best wheel materials for your casters:

polyurethane wheels on a cart

1. Floor Protection

Who wants a scratched/scuffed up floor? Not us! Nobody wants to pay extra money to have the floor redone, simply because casters have damaged it. The material of polyurethane will deflect and create a much large footprint than some of its harder wheel counterparts (such as nylon wheels)

employee with hearing protection

2. Less Noisy

Products that protect your employees are hot on the market right now. Everything from ergonomic matting, to sit-to-stand desks, to pallet pals that help prevent work injuries. One injury that can commonly get overlooked is hearing loss. While most companies provide earplugs, they sometimes don’t always do the job. Polyurethane wheels act as a shock absorber and noise levels are dramatically reduced in comparison to steel or cast iron wheels. This will ultimately keep the noise level down and protect your employees’ ears.

polyurethane wheels on a cart

3. Higher Load Capacity

In comparison to rubber wheels, polyurethane can withstand a much higher load capacity, which also providing the benefits of rubber wheels (such as noise reduction, shock absorption, and floor protection).

4. High Resiliency

Not only is the tread non-slip, but the caster wheel itself has high resiliency because of the polyurethane material and the way it is designed. Its rebound resilience is higher than that of many other wheel materials, which causes it to be more ergonomic because less force is needed to push/pull the caster, because of its rebound energy.

polyurethane wheels on shelf

5. Tread is non-slip

The non-slip tread allows for it to keep towed carts right-side up where sliding can be a problem for harder wheel materials. Because of the good traction, less force is necessary to drive the wheels, reducing the amount of load on the wheel and prolonging the life of the casters. Not only is the tread non-slip, but the caster wheel itself has high resiliency because of the polyurethane material and the way it is designed. Its rebound resilience is higher than that of many other wheel materials, which causes it to be more ergonomic because less force is needed to push/pull the caster, because of its rebound energy.

Barron Caster logo

While there are several options for casters and wheels, polyurethane is a great choice, especially if you work in wet and/or humid environments.

Not all urethane wheels are the same! We are very picky about the quality of products we sell, and we only carry the best wheels and casters on the market. We also offer a four year warranty on all Blickle urethane wheels. For more information about our polyurethane wheels and/or all of our casters and wheels, please contact us at casters@barroneq.com, or give us a call at 1-800-397-6690.

3 Tests You Can Do to Make Sure Your Garage Door is Ready for Fall

Residential garage door wordpress

It’s about that time, folks! Fall is quickly approaching and here at Barron, we want to make sure you’re as prepared as can be when it comes to having a safe garage door. There are 3 things you can do at home to determine whether or not your garage door needs service.

Here’s what you can do:

 

inside of garage

1. Take a Look at Your Garage Door Parts

Start with the garage door tracks, rollers, and hinges. Are they broken or rusted? What about the cables? Do they appear to be rusted, worn out, or frayed? When you close the garage door, can you see any light coming through from the seals on the sides or the bottom? If you can say yes to any of these questions, you need to give us a call to get it checked out!

Inside of garge door with seal broken

2. Make Sure Your Door is Sealed

You’ll want to take a look at the bottom seal of your garage door and ensure that there is no space between the seal and the ground. During the fall season, small animals and rodents like to get into your garage where it’s warm and cozy and you can prevent this from happening by making sure your garage door is appropriately sealed. If you do find holes in the seal, give us a call and we can replace it immediately.

 

inside garage door half way up

3. Check for Balance

This is a quick and easy way to determine whether or not you need an adjustment on your door. All you have to do is close your door, disconnect the door from the opener by pulling the red cord, lift the door manually and stop it at about waist height. Your door should stay at waist height. If the door goes up or down, the door is out of alignment and there is unnecessary stress that is being put on your opener. Your door will need an adjustment to prevent further damage.

 

service tech working on garage door

All of that being said, this is now time for a friendly, public service announcement - it is VERY dangerous for people to attempt to fix their own garage doors if they are not qualified. If your door fails any of these 3 tests, we would be happy to check it out! Feel free to fill out a service request form or give us a call for more information.

 

new garage door

Why You Should Consider Mezzanines in Your Workspace

If you're unfamiliar with word "mezzanine" you might wonder what it has to do with your warehouse space. It sounds like something out of a fictional romance novel. The good news is that this product is not fictional. It is real and it can help you save a tremendous amount of time, money and space!

Wildek Mezzanine

The What

Let's dig a little deeper shall we? First we'll start off with identifying what a mezzanine is. No, it's not a French style pizza, nor is it a balcony at an opera-house (although it can be, but not in this specific context).

The word "mezzanine" originated during the 18th century and originally came from the Latin word for median. It was then converted to the Italian word for "middle" and then ultimately became the French version we know and love, "mezzanine," in the early 18th century.

 

By definition, a mezzanine is "a low-ceilinged story between two main stories of a building especially : an intermediate story that projects in the form of a balcony." Mezzanines can come in all different types of forms; from a trendy loft in someone's home, to a sought after spot for a balcony in a theater. In this particular situation, we will be discussing industrial/commercial mezzanines.

 

 

kitchen with mezzanine design

Mezzanines are  most frequently used in the industrial scene because places like warehouses and distribution plants both tend to have higher ceilings, allowing for an easy way to create more storage space above. As in, why would people build out when they can go up?

 

 

 

Emerge Academy Mezzanine installed in open warehouse space

The Why

Okay, now that you know what a mezzanine actually is, we can go even deeper so you can determine whether or not you have a need for one!

There are plenty of justifications for applying a mezzanine into your workplace. Who wouldn't want a super fun platform above their workspace? But the most important reason for getting a mezzanine would be if you’re looking to expand your warehouse or factory because you’re running out of space. Mezzanines are designed to fill the empty space above you, which is much cheaper and more efficient than your typical expansion. Smaller workplaces will use mezzanines as overhead storage for things like products, tools and other materials. When it comes to getting more space, mezzanines will match your growth in the most efficient way possible. 

Another reason mezzanines are awesome is that they work with all different types of applications. Do you need extra storage for equipment? Build a mezzanine and put it above the work floor area, out of harm's way. Do your managers need a better vantage point for overseeing production? Build a mezzanine and add railings for extra safety.

Lastly, mezzanines save a ton of time and money. Mezzanines are much quicker to build than a traditional expansion. And by building within a space you're already paying for, you'll save a significant amount of money.

Storage Mezzanine

The How

Now that you're aware of what a mezzanine is and why they're great for creating more space while also saving time and money, you might want to know how you can get one for your workspace.

Fortunately for you, Barron Equipment & Overhead Doors is very experienced when it comes to building mezzanines in all different types of factories, warehouses, etc. We would be happy to find the perfect mezzanine for your application. Give us a call at 1-800-397-6690 or email us at sales@barroneq.com for more information.