After you buy or build a warehouse, the next decision you’ll need to make is which type of pallet rack to use. Whether you need drive-in pallet racking or another warehousing service in Minnesota, it’s important to understand the advantages, drawbacks and quirks of each pallet rack type.
Here’s a quick overview of the different types of pallet racks to help you determine which one is right for your needs:
- Drive-in or drive-through racks: Drive-in pallet racking is one of Minnesota’s top choices. A drive-in pallet rack is made from vertical frames and horizontal beams upon which the pallets sit. The rails are organized by depth, which means forklift operators can enter the pallet rack to distribute the pallets. They offer great storage density, but keep in mind that drive-in racks use a “first in, last out” (FILO) organizational structure. Choose a drive-in pallet rack when your products are all the same and do not have an expiration date.
- Back racking or push-back racks: Back racking uses carts to move the product. When you remove one pallet, the wheeled cart moves forward so you can access the next in line. Think of this as being similar to the way refrigerated beverages are stored at grocery stores. The pallets are fed and retrieved in one single line.
- Selective pallet rack: Selective pallet racks are good for manufacturing, low-turnover retail and general warehousing. They’re basically metal shelving units meant to hold pallets. Selective pallet racks are made of structural steel, which makes them easy to clean and exceptionally durable. Selective pallet racks also provide immediate access to any pallet, as well as a clean and efficient use of your warehouse space.
- Double deep: Double-deep racks are created by placing selective pallet racks in front of one another. It can increase your storage capacity by 40 percent, but still has relatively low density compared to other racking types.
- Cantilever racking: When you have long items to store, like timber or steel beams, cantilever racking is a smart choice. They’re equipped to house long objects, but they can also hold pallets. They look like the arms of a forklift—items or pallets simply rest atop the arms.
- Pallet flow racks: Pallet flow racks are similar to back racking or push-back racks, except they use metal rollers to accomplish their goals. These pallet racks are loaded from the rear, unlike back racking. They have a slight angle so the pallets move down the rollers until they reach the front.
Clearly, the best type of pallet rack for your warehouse depends on what you plan to store there. If you’re not sure what kind of pallet rack would work best for your needs, feel free to reach out to K-Way Express, Inc. We offer warehousing services in Minnesota, so you don’t have to decide what kind of pallet racks you need—nor do you have to invest in your own warehouse space. Call us today to learn more about our temperature-controlled warehouse facilities, and get a quote. We look forward to working with you!