As you are setting up warehouse pallet racks, it is important to make sure you keep warehouse safety in mind. When you buy used racks, make sure they are structurally sound without damage. Then, when you set up your racking systems, space them appropriately for your needs and for your employees' safety. Here are tips to help you make the best decisions in these two areas of your warehouse shelving management.
Inspect Your Racks
Buying used warehouse pallet racking for your business can save you money and will help the environment by recycling used racking. But, you should always inspect any racking you buy used to make sure it will hold up the weight of heavy products that will be stored on them. A damaged or improperly repaired pallet rack can cause damage to your warehouse and products and injure or kill your employees.
Before you purchase any racking systems, look for evidence of any repairs made. If a shelf appears to have been repaired, don't buy it. You don't know who made the repair, if they were qualified to do so, and if it was done properly. Look for new paint on a pallet rack or evidence of a new weld spot. And don't buy a racking system that has any rust spots, cracks, or dents in its structure.
Before you install your pallet racks, make sure the flooring of your warehouse is strong enough to support the weight of the shelves and the products that will be stored on them. You can find out the floor's load capacity from the warehouse building's architect to make sure it is adequate.
Make sure you conduct periodic safety inspections of your racking systems in use. Check the shelves for any dents, cracks, or other visible damage that can cause a shelf to collapse. It is common for forklift trucks to accidentally come in contact with shelves, so you need to regularly check all your racks.
For more information on finding the appropriate racks, contact a professional service, such as Certified Handling Systems.
Space Your Racks Appropriately
There are three spacing options for your warehouse pallet racks for storing products; wide aisle, narrow aisle, and very narrow aisle. The width of your shelf spacing will affect how much you can store and also what types of lift trucks you can use to store and pull products.
Wide aisle trucks are the largest types of forklifts used to handle products. They can be used in aisles spaced at least 11 feet wide to handle loads up to 48 inches deep. Because wide aisle trucks require a larger aisle area in which to work, they cannot be used in smaller aisles, but can be used to pick the product right from the shelf and load it directly onto the truck.
Wide aisle trucks can only reach up to a height of 24 feet on pallet shelves, but this allows the employee to have more control over the movements of the truck and products. Then, wide aisle trucks can carry heavier loads and can move more quickly through the warehouse.
Narrow aisles spaced from eight to ten feet apart can allow you to fit more shelving in your warehouse, but will limit the type of forklift trucks you can use to manage your products. Narrow aisle trucks can reach up to 30 feet high and can reach into double-deep shelving for managing products. These types of narrow aisle trucks do move at a lower rate of speed in the warehouse, so they take more time to do the work a wide aisle truck can do at a faster speed. Then, narrow aisle trucks are slower at picking and storing products on the shelves and cannot be used to load the product onto a truck for delivery.
Although narrow aisle trucks can reach up to 30 feet high, it can make viewing up to the top shelf difficult for the truck operator as they manage products. This can lead to employee eye strain and neck injuries. It can also cause damage to the product being moved and put the employee below at risk of injury from falling products.
The last type of rack spacing is to accommodate very narrow trucks. Very narrow aisle trucks can fit in aisles six feet or less, but usually run on a guidance system of rails and wires. These trucks can also reach up to the highest elevated shelves at 40 feet.
Use this information to make smart decisions in buying used pallet racking and spacing your shelving rows.Share