High-speed doors help control temperatures

Grocery distributor sees energy and maintenance savings with fully automatic insulated doors.

By ·

SuperValu is the third-largest food retailer in the United States, operating 2,500 stores and serving as primary distributor to a 2,200 more. To separate grocery products from refrigerated and freezer areas, the company installed fully automatic high-speed doors that are approaching their five millionth cycle.

Prior to installing the new door in 2001, the company’s 324,000-square-foot distribution center in Fargo, N.D., had been using flap doors and quick doors with pull ropes to separate the 60,000-square-feet freezer space and 130,000 square feet of coolers containing perishables from the rest of the facility.

“With our old system, we were doing so much maintenance,” says Dwight Heuer, facilities manager. “Now, it’s a lot less hassle and a better seal. The other products would cut down on air flow, but they wouldn’t seal it very well, whereas the new doors can maintain the temperature.”

The new doors (Rite-Hite, ritehite.com) are used to separate groceries from dairy and meat, while a more robustly insulated version enables quick access to the freezer. The doors operate at up to 100 inches per second, contributing to energy savings. Safety features include a soft edge technology, thru-beam photo eyes and motion detection. Since installing the doors, Heuer says maintenance costs and time have been reduced.

“Compared to our previous doors, they run pretty maintenance free,” says Heuer, who adds that personnel keep a close eye on cycle counts and perform the necessary maintenance at regular intervals. “We did some before-and-after testing with an infrared gun. The temperature loss was a lot less with the doors. Our freezer temperature is not only controlled, it also doesn’t have frost problems.”


About the Author

Josh Bond, Senior Editor
Josh Bond is Senior Editor for Modern, and was formerly Modern’s lift truck columnist and associate editor. He has a degree in Journalism from Keene State College and has studied business management at Franklin Pierce University.

Subscribe to Modern Materials Handling Magazine!

Subscribe today. It's FREE!
Find out what the world’s most innovative companies are doing to improve productivity in their plants and distribution centers.
Start your FREE subscription today!

Latest Whitepaper
Totes keep produce fresh from field to store
A two-part reusable plastic tote features a frame that cradles produce in a recyclable, replaceable sleeve.
Download Today!
From the December 2017 Modern Materials Handling Issue
Confronting an aging materials handling system and new channels of business with new customer expectations, Rocky Brands installed a put-to-light and sortation system to ramp up fulfillment.
The Big Picture: Navigation Gets a Reboot for Automatic Vehicles
Top 20 3PL Warehouses 2017: Growth amid change
View More From this Issue
Subscribe to Our Email Newsletter
Sign up today to receive our FREE, weekly email newsletter!
Latest Webcast
The State of the DC Voice Market
A lot has changed in the last 10 years, especially in voice technology. This webinar will cover the state of the voice market, review two leading voice solutions and help you gain a better understanding of the options and capabilities available today.
Register Today!
EDITORS' PICKS
System Report: Rocky Brands Sees the Light
Confronting an aging materials handling system and new channels of business with new customer...
Top 20 industrial lift truck suppliers, 2017
The top lift truck suppliers list is changing with industry acquisitions causing a dramatic...

Lodge Manufacturing: Distribution Cast in Iron
In a new facility, iPhones and a new WMS allowed cookware manufacturer Lodge to double its business...
Rochester Drug Cooperative: Robots ready for work
It’s still early stages, but Rochester Drug Cooperative is proving that mobile robotic piece...