6 Biggest Pallet Racking Mistakes You Should Avoid


Whether you are looking to buy your first pallet racking system or expand an existing warehouse, read this article first. These are the top 6 pallet racking mistakes that could compromise the safety of your warehouse and be quite costly in the short and long-term. Safe and cost-effective racking is simple and can be achieved by eliminating the following mistakes.

1. Buying the Wrong Size Racking

When buying pallet racking you should not underestimate the depth of your pallets. This would render the racking useless. Underestimating the height of the upper levels of your racking could also mean that your lifting equipment cannot reach some levels. This could render  some of your storage space unusable unless you invest in a forklift capable of reaching higher.

2. Not Considering the Height to Depth Ratio

If the height to depth ratio of your racking exceeds 6 to 1, additional supports need to be used to prevent toppling. These could be overhead ties or baseplates. For further information on the regulations of height to depth ratio, please refer to ANSI MH16.1, Specification for the Design, Testing and Utilization of Industrial Steel Storage Racks, 8.1 “Overturning.

3. Not Having the Correct Spec Racking for the Weight of Your Pallets

Different racking systems are available to give different loading capacities. Frames can be bolted or welded, levels can be timber, steel mesh or sheet, and each combination of constructions gives a different rated load capacity which you should not exceed. Know the weight of your pallets and buy racking accordingly. See a recent article on medium and heavy duty racking for more information.

© The Open University (Flickr)

© The Open University (Flickr)

4. Not Making Repairs

One of the most regrettable and biggest pallet racking mistakes is to not making repairs in time. You must replace broken bolts and repair welded joints immediately. If you ignore repairs or do not discover them quickly enough, racking collapses may occur. Repair bills won’t cost you much, but will require that you unload, repair and reload racking, however this small effort can save much larger bills should the racking collapse. Racking collapses also seriously undermine the safety of your warehouse.

5. False Economy

Cheap racking offers little in the way of long term economy and will often need more repairs than a higher quality alternative. Used systems may offer you a higher quality product for a lower cost, but the age of the system and its repair history must be considered when weighing up the overall cost-effectiveness of a system. Much like buying a used car, the cost to keep the system running could be significant and can cause more downtime.

SEE ALSO: Things to consider before buying used racking

6. Assuming Pallet Racking is Only for Huge Warehouses

Pallet racking solutions are available in sizes to suit every warehouse and storage room. If you already use, or are considering upgrading to pallet based storage systems there is a racking product available to suit your needs. Pallet racking allows you to expand the capability of your storage space safely and cost-effectively.

SEE ALSO: 8 Point Checklist for New Warehouse Racking

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