Loading dock areas are under constant attack by pests, dust, and the weather elements. Sealing off the doors would prevent temperature loss and reduce heating or cooling energy spent. A proper seal would also keep the pests at bay and prevent many common problems; especially in the food, chemical, and pharmaceutical industries.
To keep the facility as energy-efficient and clean as possible, there are many different approaches. Our blog will give six great examples on how to seal off dock doors that let in cold/hot air. With the right preparation, you will prevent product damage and cross contamination, improve employee comfort and safety, and reduce maintenance costs.
Solutions On How To Seal Off Dock Doors
Option 1: Dock Door Strips
The first option includes using strips as dock doors. They are by far the most common method of controlling airflow in and out of the dock opening.
Strips are super easy to install and can cover door openings to reduce energy loss. You can go with clear and transparent PVC strips for better visibility or choose a specific color. Such doors allow natural light to come in.
- Allows rapid access into and out of the docks
- Prevent dust, rain, snow, smoke, and flying debris from entering
- The most common method for controlling dock air loss
- Common strip doors have these widths/thicknesses: 6″/.060″ | 8″/.080″| 12″/.120″ | 16″/.160″
- Damaged strips can be replaced in seconds, and there is no need to take down the whole strip door to do so
- Really easy to pass through, strips are great for constant movement of products
Option 2: Stand Off Strip Curtains
As option two, we are going to use the strips as a barrier around a roll-up dock door. Such strip curtains come out and around the door.
Strip curtains for overhead doors would be great for sealing up roll-up doors. These strip doors use hardware which is mounted on both sides of the roll-up drum. The strip barrier is field-adjustable inward and outward for a perfect fit. The cross member then spans the width of the opening and thus forming a 3-sided enclosure.
It is possible to attach a 20mil PVC clear curtain to the top of the opening to make it a complete enclosure. You can also adjust the strips inward and outward so they can fit perfectly around the roll-up door.
The benefits are similar to the strip doors from option one. The stand-off strip barrier will boost dock protection, and stop cold air from entering.
Option 3: Roll-Up Dock Door Curtains
These type of curtain barriers are ideal for low-traffic operations. Constant usage by rolling the curtains up and down will wear out the Velcro seal.
Basically, these curtains are best for long-term, low-frequency operations. The-roll up dock door curtains will entirely cover the door and prevent anything from sneaking in. As such, they are great fo steel dock doors that let in cold air. They use Velcro seals to completely seal off the entrance.
- They are a common and instinctive blocking method
- Require no maintenance
- They are adjustable to any kind of opening
- Withstand negative effects such as high or low temperatures, steam, and others
- They are customizable with colors
Option 4: Dock Seal Draft Blockers
These vinyl draft blockers would prevent air from entering between the seals and dock levelers. The heavy base provides stable sealing while the industrial-grade vinyl improves durability and longevity.
The interior is filled with foam for better compression. There is also an air vent inside the blocker which brings it back into original form. This product can be found from several suppliers including this one: Home Depot
- The draft blockers are heavy enough to stay in place and not budge
- There are handles, so you can carry and easily remove the blockers
- Vinyl construction improves longevity and durability
- Improved temperature control as outside air cannot enter
Option 5: Traditional Dock Seals
Traditional dock seals provide amazing protection like all the so-far-mentioned examples. They are long-lasting, extremely durable, have abrasion resistance, and can withstand the outside elements. This product can be found from several suppliers including this one: Chalfant
Here are their compounds:
- Air vents which minimize rupture
- Wood mounting base which is encased inside the pad cover for extra defense
- Foam pads which is bonded to the wood as a chemical adhesive barrier
- Drain holes to reduce moisture build-up
- Galvanized 14-gauge steel mounts for extra durability
- And many other customizable features
Option 6: Insulated Warehouse Curtains
These curtains can be quite large and are great at sealing off an entire dock area. They serves as a barrier from the dock doors that are always opening and closing to contain the cold or hot air. This works the same as the double doors that you walk into at a grocery store. You walk through one door, then there is about 10' of space, then you walk through another door. That area between the doors keeps the rest of the facility from being overrun with cold air from outside. The curtain walls can also have openings with roll-up doors. The insulated curtains can be used to divide and reorganize entire warehouses.
- Superior temperature, noise, dust, pest, and weather control
- Create temperature zones for employee comfort and to store food products
- Amazing for food distribution plants to preserve food quality
- The curtain walls have vinyl skins which contain condensation
- They have an anti-microbial agent to prevent mold or mildew buildup
- Chilling equipment will be able to operate with less energy consumption
- You can reorganize a warehouse and lease out space to multiple tenants
- Great for dealing with chemical materials
- Such curtain walls can be customized to fit pretty much anywhere
- The curtain walls are not permanent and can be taken down, moved, or stored
- Possibility to add entry locations in the form of strip curtains, swinging doors, or powered roll-up doors
The Industry Leader In Dock Door Protection
Loading Dock Strip Doors
It is possible to cover each individual dock opening with our strip doors. These strips are made out of clear PVC door flaps which overlap each other to create a seal. Thew newly-formed strip door keeps factory temperature stable and isolates it from the outside environment. They are great for rapid movement of forklift traffic. The strips are easily-replaceable if they suffer any damage.
Loading Dock Enclosures – Dock Dividers
AKON's loading dock enclosures can surround the entire loading dock area. You can add points of entry across the enclosures. These insulated curtains will control the indoor temperature. The warehouse enclosure curtains cost more than our standard warehouse enclosures. However, both versions will reduce the amount of warm/cold air lost from the loading dock area.
Roll-Up Dock Door Curtains
AKON's roll-up dock door curtains will completely cover dock doors and prevent energy loss. These curtains covers open doorways and make sure there is no temperature loss. They are an amazing long-term investment as there will be no more heat or air conditioning wasting. The curtains are a great addition to roll-up steel dock doors. Once you are done moving materials, use the Velcro seal to close off the entrance.
Loading Dock Door Curtains
Our insulated dock curtains are ideal for less-frequent forklift traffic. They will completely seal off the door opening with a Velcro strip. The dock door curtains we offer have either a R3 or R6 rating. They can also roll side-to-side on curtain tracks thanks to their roller hooks. If you are wondering how to seal your dock door, then our curtains are the right answer - they will prevent both warm or cold outdoor air from entering inside.
What Makes Our Dock Door Seals Special?
AKON's custom curtains come with grommets which makes hanging quick and easy regardless if there is a curtain track.
Industrial dock door curtains are up to 70% cheaper than traditional separation methods such as permanent walls or panel systems.
You can use the curtain walls to separate workers for welding, washing, or packaging operations. Also, great for worker social distancing.
Thanks to the thick PVC the curtains use. they provide superior noise, dust, and temperature control for a comfortable working environment.
Energy Saving Benefits
Our company produces loading dock curtains with industrial-grade vinyl as well as loading dock enclosures. The curtains and enclosures are used to conserve energy, keep inside temperatures stable, and control dust. Our industrial curtains can be customized depending on you application. They can either cover the dock door opening or form an entire wall which encloses the loading dock area. Here are some benefits:
Dock Door Curtain Benefits:
- they will significantly reduce energy costs
- less expensive than traditional walls
- the curtains can be taken down in seconds and easily stored
- they require almost no maintenance efforts
- great for shops or warehouses alike
- they have a neat, custom appearance
- improve the indoor working conditions
- stops hot/cold air, dust, or pests