PFlow Industries, Inc.
Since 1977, PFlow has been solely devoted to the design and manufacturer of vertical reciprocating conveyors (VRC’s) material handling equipment, systems, and specials. As the VRC pioneer, PFlow has led the industry from the start.
6720 N. Teutonia Avenue Milwaukee, WI, 53209 USA
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Did you know that there are very different safety standards associated with operating a device that lifts people as opposed to one designed solely to handle freight?

Way back in 1981, PFlow helped to enact legislation which separates “material-moving” vertical reciprocating conveyors (VRC) from “people-moving” elevators.

Keep reading to learn how a VRC could be the best freight elevator you ever used!

1. Do You Want Passengers to Be Able to Ride on the Lift?

If you are only interested in a device that will lift materials, your costs will be lowered and there are many additional installation options available.

In the United States, there are very different operating standards and regulations for running an elevator which transports people and one meant solely for moving materials or equipment. When only materials will need to ride in your service elevator, you can save a great deal of time and money.

2. What are the Standards for a Material-Carrying Freight Elevator?

freight elevatorThe ASME A17.1 is the national standard for elevators and escalators. These devices can carry people and also be used as freight elevators. They support more uses but come at a much higher installation cost, and the standards governing them are much more strict to maintain from year to year.

The ASME B20.1 is the national standard for vertical reciprocating conveyors. These devices are only meant to carry materials. They are not meant to be operated in the general proximity of the public and are designed for controlled commercial and industrial applications.

3. Why Choose a VRC Over an Elevator?

If you are operating a controlled commercial or industrial facility that does not need to transport people because you already have elevators or stairs for that, a VRC could be the perfect choice.

You will save time and money in the short and long term by choosing a VRC over installing a new elevator meant to transport people. The main savings is tied to the unique codes and upkeep associated with the operation of an elevator.

It is important to note that VRCs are commonly referred to as freight elevators, though in the eyes of the federal government, they are not one in the same.

4. How Does a VRC Differ from an Elevator?

Some fundamental ways that a VRC differs from an elevator are:

  • A VRC cannot be operated from inside the moving car. This is a huge difference compared to any elevator you are likely to have ridden inside a public building.
  • An elevator is capable of lifting at speeds up to 100 feet per second. A VRC will only be able to lift up to 15 to 25 feet per second. It is important to remember that VRCs are designed for lifting much heavier loads compared to pedestrian elevators.
  • A VRC can be placed in many unique locations inside buildings where it is not legal to place an elevator. This means that you have many more options when installing one.
  • An elevator costs much more to install and repair than a VRC.

5. How to Choose the Right VRC?

If you are only interested in moving materials around your facility, a VRC is probably the better choice!

Installing a vertical reciprocating conveyor could save you time and money. Plus VRCs offer:

  • Cost-saving solution for moving materials
  • Safer and more efficient than operating a forklift between floors
  • Easily move weights up to 100 tons
  • Customized solution will fit perfectly in your building
  • Many unique options available depending on the types of loads you need to move on your property
  • Simple installation in an unused elevator shaft or new construction
  • Conforms to code in all 50 U.S. states
  • Meets National ASME B20.1 Safety Standards

Contact us today to learn about how to choose the right VRC for your building!