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Seven Things to Consider When Installing a Warehouse Pallet Rack System

Whether you’re redesigning your layout or moving into a new building, determining your warehouse setup and installation is a top priority. Setting up your pallet rack system correctly will maximize the efficiency of your operations and increase overall profits for your business. Warehouse rack installation is complex and is best handled with a lot of careful planning.

Minimize the challenges you’ll inevitably endure during installation by thoroughly auditing your building location, your intended layout, reviewing regulations and consulting a licensed engineer before you invest a significant sum of money in changing the way you do business.

Warehouse Lay-Out & Dimensions

In the decision-making process, you likely have documented common pick paths, bin locations, and inventory levels of your materials. You’ll also need to plot the size of your offices, the receiving area and other spaces based on the dimensions of your warehouse.

Once you’ve prepared and have dimensions for these elements, you’re ready to move forward to the next step. If you have questions about standards or legal implications, it’s best to consult a professional.

Planning & Preparation

Walk through your available space and check for barriers to a smooth installation. Look for beams, exposed ductwork, pipes, or low ceilings. Check the floor to ensure you can anchor a rack system properly. The floor must be level for anchors, and the slab must be at least 6-inches thick for regular heavy-duty racks.

The planning you did to plot pick paths and bin locations comes in handy here. You need to know that the racking you choose will support your product weight distributions and load applications. If you live in an area with seismic events, ensure the racking can withstand the seismic demands. Check to see that the rack systems you’re considering will support your loads and have the gauge and size options you require.

Choosing the Right Pallet Racking System

Sketch a rack layout with the information you have. Gather measurements of your inventory to determine how far apart to set the shelves. Review the federal, state, and local regulations to make sure your layout complies fully. It will then need to be approved and stamped by a licensed project engineer. This professional can help you obtain all the necessary building permits.

Once you have an approved plan in place, it’s time to make final decisions about which rack system best meets your needs. At this point, you should have data regarding the building and your product storage needs.

Drive in racking

Selecting the right rack system is paramount to this entire project. The right system will meet your requirements for forklift access, pallet load weight, and pick profiles. It will organize your inventory and make your business more efficient. It is a significant investment that must be planned and executed carefully to succeed.

Installation & General Assembly

Once the pallet rack system components have arrived, take a careful inventory of the shipment to make sure everything has arrived and is in good condition. You don’t want to start the installation and get held up waiting for a replacement part. Organize all the components so you can find necessary parts quickly and efficiently, and be sure to gather all the necessary tools.

Follow the Manufacturer’s Instructions

This point cannot be emphasized too much. If you don’t follow the manufacturer’s instructions, you could affect the stability of the system, which could be catastrophic to people and property.

Make sure there is adequate space for lifting devices and equipment between each assembly.

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Installing the Shelving System

Determine where the first rack will be installed, then mark the floor with chalk lines for the entire layout. Check aisle widths for accessibility of lifting devices and equipment. Mark areas for the corners and uprights with chalk lines.

Install the first bay, then check to make sure it is square in all directions with your chalk layout. It’s critical to check it now, as a small error could result in a complete failure near the end.

Assemble row by row, checking and double-checking that all connections, locks and anchors are secure. Adhere to the torque code written in the manufacturer’s instructions, so it will have structural integrity. Use a level to square any slopes in the beams and uprights.

Once all bays have been installed and are verified, the footplates can be anchored. Inspect each section again to ensure all assembly instructions have been followed and are compliant with the plan and all the preceding steps. Shelves, accessories, crossbars, and decking are the last pieces to go in.

Get Consult from the Experts

Planning, choosing, and installing a warehouse pallet rack system needs meticulous attention to detail. It’s important to research your selection thoroughly, investigate your building property completely and abide by every step of the manufacturer’s instructions for installation. For further information on rack system styles, dimensions, logistics and prices, call (888) 551-5528 to speak with an expert at Container Exchanger. Container Exchanger is the #1 online exchange to buy and sell industrial shipping & storage solutions.

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