Despite the availability of numerous storage options, most warehouses opt to go for pallet racking. Pallet racking keeps operations in the warehouse organized, offers flexible storage, and makes good use of the space from the floor to the ceiling. The system contains horizontal beams where the pallets with the goods usually rest. The height of those beams often determine the number of pallets that can be stacked together in one storage space or bay. Here are some interesting facts about pallet racking.
1. Method of Arrangement
Usually, a pallet rack is made up of vertical steel frames attached to horizontal beams. There are two methods that are used to connect the beams and frames. The first method involves bolting the steel frames and beams together using nuts and screws. The second method involves interlocking the frames and beams together. A third method that is also used, but is not very common is welding the two components together.
2. Rack Systems
There are two types of rack systems most commonly used: low-density and high-density. Low-density racks allow easy retrieval of goods. They are further grouped into two categories: single-deep and double-deep. A single-deep low-density rack allows the storage of goods in one deep pallet while a double-deep permits the storage of one pallet load behind another. High-density racks put the pallet loads together in a way that makes maximum use of the space.
3. Movement of Goods
There are two ways that one can move goods along the pallet rack system: using the gravity flow rack or the push-back rack. The gravity flow rack uses a conveyor to move the pallet loads from the rack to the loading zone. The gravity flow rack handles goods on a first come, first serve basis; thus, the load at the front of the pack will be first one to be loaded and so on. On the other hand, a push-back rack uses a railing system to move the pallets around. Unlike the gravity system, it handles the pallet loads on a last in, first out basis – meaning that the item at the back of pack will be the first one to be retrieved.
The following factors are usually considered when estimating the cost of installing a pallet rack system: cost of materials, freight and installation fees, project costs, and whether the location is prone to earthquakes – it costs more to create a seismic proof system. The standard cost for a selective pallet racking is between $50 and $75 for every pallet position. Alternatively, a standard push-back pallet system made up of 2-pallets deep costs between $151 and $181 per pallet position. One thing to note is that the costs may vary depending on location and market conditions.
5. System Maintenance
The rack system is subject to severe wear and tear due to the constant movement of loads to and from the system, collisions with the forklift, and climbing by workers. Such activities also make the system loose and more prone to accidents caused by an unexpected collapse. Due to this reason, the warehouse management has to conduct regular checks and inspection. Any racks that are found to be damaged are immediately replaced since continued usage can lead to more damage and greater repair costs.
The following facts are helpful to anyone intending to start a warehouse storage business or is just curious about pallet racking. Another important point to note if you want to install a pallet rack system is the local laws. Ensure that you are aware of the various legal requirements before building the system. That way, you avoid hefty fines. Finally, in order to create a pallet rack system that will last, one has to hire a professional to do the installation. Don’t attempt to do it yourself if you have no prior experience.