Don't Break your Back! - "Hand Truck Tips & Tricks"

Posted by Contributing Editor on Fri, Dec 19, 2014

PowerMate Top Hat

If the hand truck you are using today requires the operator to put their foot on the axle and pull, then there is an easier and safer way - the PowerMate® way! PowerMate® has been proven by independent research to reduce the effort on the operator by as much as 87% versus a conventional hand truck. Use PowerMate® technology to help avoid preventable back injuries. Here is just one example: the unique 3 point break back system.


PowerMate® Unique 3-Point Break Back

The force required to break back a load when the dolly is loaded and at rest requires the operator to place their foot on the axle of the dolly and pull using their legs, arms, and back. This exposes the operator to potential injury that can be avoided with the use of a PowerMate® motorized stair climbing dolly!


PowerMate load break back

The "Tip":

All PowerMate® L-, LE- and M-Series Stairclimbers feature 3 point "break back". Let your PowerMate® do the work for you! Simply raise the wheels 20-35cm, changing the fulcrum, and effortlessly break back the load without having to place your foot on the axle and pull, avoiding putting the operator at risk of injury.

Similarly, when placing a load down again, the operator is always in control. By "feathering" the close button, the operator can stand a load up without having to place their foot on the axle or use their arms to push. Let PowerMate® do the heavy lifting for you!

For more information on the ergonomic advantages of PowerMate®, we invite you to review the PowerMate® Safety & Profitability Presentation.

Seeing is Believing!

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 At a recent trade show, PowerMate® had the opportunity to review the 3 point break back with many of the visitors. To the left you can see just one of the many "amazed" participants that experienced the value of 3 point back break first-hand! Often times it is possible to safely break back the load with little effort and just one hand placing both the machine and load in a balanced position.

To illustrate this unique feature at trade shows, PowerMate® exhibitors make a point of periodically asking a volunteer to break back the load like they would with a conventional hand truck. In most cases, the can do it with great effort and a few groans.

After raising the wheels off the ground, changing the fulcrum, they try again. To the amazement of everyone, the volunteer completes the break back; safely placing the machine and load in a balanced position. At this time, everyone wants to try using the PowerMate® dolly. The difference is astounding and the safety and ergonomic value of PowerMate® is clear.

Following the same procedure as detailed above, utilizing the leverage/hook bar found on all M-Series machines can further assist you in breaking back the heaviest loads up to 1 500lbs or 680kg! Using the operator's body weight and larger muscles of the legs, makes breaking back a load as ergonomically efficient as possible and requires the least amount of effort for the operator.

3-point break back is just one ergonomic advantage PowerMate® has when compared to other hand trucks that have the wheels and base plate fixed.

PowerMate leverage bar

For some of the heaviest loads, like customers moving larger safes, vending machines, and built-in appliances, even with the PowerMate® unique 3 point break back, breaking back a load can be challenging. Here is another "trick" PowerMate® has used, over the years, to make break back easier with the heaviest of loads:

The "Trick" - The Wooden Block:

  1. Raise the wheels of the machine off the ground to fit a block of wood underneath.
    Wooden blocks of various sizes can be used as tools to assist in completing a wide range of moving tasks.
  2. Lower the wheels down onto the block of wood and continue to lower them to tilt the load.
  3. Place another block of wood under the load as far away from the machine as possible, ideally beyond the center of mass.
  4. Raise the wheels to remove the first piece of wood and position the wheels to complete the break back process.

To experience PowerMate® 3-point break back for yourself, you are invited tocontact your local PowerMate Partner or check out our NEW upcoming international PowerMate® Trade Shows and Events webpage for an opportunity to see PowerMate® near you!