Which Pallet Racking System?

The storage of goods within your warehouse and the logistical systems put in place to support it will ultimately determine its overall success. There is no one-size-fits-all solution and there are a number of aspects to consider when planning to install a new pallet racking system. Given the amount of time and financial investment that goes into building one, it is important that you choose the most effective option for your warehouse. Read on below to see what should be taken into consideration.

Space

Maximising space within the warehouse will naturally have an effect on associated costs. Think about how you can not only make the most of the floor dimensions but what can be done to utilise vertical space.

Product type

The product type, size and weight held in the warehouse should be one of your main considerations. This will impact on the style and size of the racking you invest in, as well as the logistics that may be required to move the products from one point to another.

Financial outlay

Financial costs will of course be key to any business decision taken. The process of obtaining a new pallet racking system occurs through two main stages; design and installation. Long term savings will add benefit to the acquisition of a successful system, which can be weighed up against the more significant initial purchasing cost.

Layout

Take into consideration not only the layout of the new racking system but also the other operations that encompass the full logistical flow. This will ensure that not only will throughput become more efficient but the working environment remains safe for employees.

TYPES OF SYSTEMS AVAILABLE

Cantilever Racking

Wholesalers and builders merchants benefit greatly from using this style of pallet racking as it is ideal for storing items that are bulky and not of a standard size and shape, especially those made from steel and wood. It is a versatile shelving system that provides great flexibility for companies with a wide variance in their product range.

Selective Racking

A commonly selected pallet racking system supported by load beams, where pallets are accessed from the isle. The ability to configure the system into almost any size required is why this proves to be such a popular choice, along with how easily it can be constructed and installed.

Push Back Racking

This particular pallet racking system works on a last-in/first-out (FIFO) rotational system, making them a perfect fit for warehouses with high-density multiple product storage. This works when a new pallet is placed onto the structure, pushing the next pallet firmly back onto the rails. The reverse happens when they are unloaded where they are then pushed to the front.

Drive-In Racking

If floor space is a real issue, then drive-in racking also works on a FIFO rotational system and helps to resolve the issue. The reason for this is because it utilises fewer aisles but maintains the same level of storage. The system is used in conjunction with forklifts who manoeuvre through the aisles loading further pallets.

Gravity Flow Racking

This FIFO loading system is normally used for high density storage environments that require multiple order picking levels. The loads are removed at the lower end after initially being stored at the higher end of the system, and the flow of the racks allow the rotation to eventually become an automatic process.

Carton Flow Racking

If using the FIFO system then carton flow racking provides great storage options. The rear load method makes for easy use of the managed inventory. This system will rotate automatically which increases efficiency not only with storage, but across operations as a whole.

Richard Haynes has been in the industrial warehouse industry for many years. You can find him on

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