Industrial Pallet Rack Systems – How to Find the Best Solution

The Process:  Designing the Right Storage and Fulfillment Solution for Your Warehouse

Whether you’re looking for more pallet rack, designing a new warehouse racking system or modifying what you already have, there are many things to consider in the development of your material handling and storage rack system.  A quick walk-through of the process and options available will help you determine the best solution for your unique storage and fulfillment needs.

pallet rack layout

  1. Available Space – Your physical warehousing space will determine racking heights and depths as well as travel patterns and operating space for workers and material handling equipment. Experienced storage system designers will consider all the building parameters (square footage, ceiling height, obstructions, dock door placement, etc.) to best layout your system to achieve maximum efficiency.
  1. Product Profile – A thorough inventory review is the next component in your design development.  The specifications of what needs to be stored; size, shape, weight and pallet type will determine what storage options can be used as well as which type of pallet rack material (i.e. roll-formed or structural steel) you’ll select for pallet rack frames and beams
  1. Inventory Movement – Next, you’ll need to take a close look at your inventory requirements, including;
    • Inventory Rotation:FIFO or LIFO product rotation dictates certain industrial storage rack options.  
    • Inventory Throughput: How much of the inventory is static vs dynamic and at what rate is the inventory moved? Does the inventory change/seasonality? What growth potential do you want to plan for?
    • Picking Accessibility: What items and how much of each are picked full pallet and how many are broken into cases for full case or each picking?

With all of the above information in hand it is time to look at storage racking options to determine the best solution or combination of available solutions to suit your needs.

The Options:  Industrial Storage Rack Systemspallet rack pick module

  • Selective pallet rack – single deep, 100% selectivity, (2-deep is also avail). Best for high-throughput, low SKU density.
  • Push-back pallet rack – LIFO storage, usually 3-4 deep but can go deeper. High-density solution requires specialized equipment for pallet positions above 20’.
  • Drive-in/drive-through pallet rack – LIFO storage, high-density, low SKU option, 10+ deep. Best used for large quantity of similar product that can be stored in a single pallet position.
  • Pallet flow storage rack – Gravity flow FIFO storage, high-density, 2-10 deep. Best for inventory rotation of perishable goods.
  • Cantilever rack – Adjustable arms positioned on uprights to hold awkward-sized, long, or heavy material that standard pallet storage cannot accommodate, i.e. reels, furniture, tires.
  • Carton flow systems – Gravity flow FIFO storage for full & split-case picking.
  • Pick modules – combine pallet and carton storage in multi-level storage system utilizing two or more of the above racking options for productive order picking.

 The Details: Safety Features and Accessories:

pallet rack row end guard

No industrial storage rack system design is complete without safety features – guide rails, upright and row protectors, sprinkler systems, etc. are critical features to include in your completed project.  Other items including dock accessories, interior and exterior doors, mezzanines and stairs will also be added to ensure all OSHA requirements and overall efficiency demands are met.

Apex Warehouse Systems is a 100% full-service company, providing our customers with expert support throughout the design/redesign process to installation and until first package rolls out from the dock.  Our experience and willingness to look at each customer challenge in a new way set us apart as do our in-house facilities.  We also have a Quick Quote option on our new website for customers that know what pallet racking items they need.  Please browse through our inventory of new and used pallet rack frames, beams and accessories and complete our Quick Quote request to speed delivery of your new items. Or, contact us today to discuss your material handling challenges and for a free consultation.  Happy customers are our number one goal!