Pallet Flow Rack Systems: Increase Fluidity in Your Warehouse
Everyone is always looking for ways to make their warehouse more efficient. Having a racking system that suits your inventory system and your materials is essential to increasing productivity and cutting down costs in your warehouse. In this two-part series, we will look at two different kinds of pallet racking known to increase fluidity in your warehouse—Pallet Flow Rack Systems and Carton Flow Racking. Looking at the benefits of these types of racking will provide insight as to which system could make your warehouse more efficient and dynamic. Firstly, we’re going to look how pallet flow rack can benefit your warehouse.
Pallet Flow Rack Systems Increase Efficiency
What is a pallet flow rack system?
Pallet flow rack systems are first-in-first-out (FIFO), high density gravity driven rack systems which allow you to maximize cubic feet by not wasting as much space in aisles. This dynamic system is constructed to accommodate palletized loads, not individual products or items. Pallets are loaded on one side of the racking lane and then retrieved from the other side. Pallet flow racks have wheels or rollers that are slightly sloped to allow pallets to easily flow through the rack lane. The wheels and rollers are engineered to control the speed of the pallet rolling through the rack lane, so your product will not incur any damages by jolting too quickly or colliding with other pallets. There are two different types of pallet flow rack systems—individual skate wheel racks and full-width steel rolling racks. Pictured below is a full-width steel roller pallet flow rack. Pallet flow racks with individual skate wheels are positioned to support the strongest part of the pallets, and not as versatile as the type pictured below.
How does the pallet flow rack increase warehouse fluidity?
A pallet flow rack system takes your immobile warehouse system and turns it into a smooth and flowing process. When pallets are loaded on to the input side of the rack, they will continue to flow along the rollers to the other side of the rack system as pallets in front of it are unloaded. A pallet stop is installed in the front to stop racks once they reach the output side of the rack. Each lane in the pallet flow rack can be dedicated to a particular SKU number, giving warehouse order pickers easy and immediate access to all of your products. This saves time, creating higher warehouse efficiency. Less time is spent handling your inventory with only one input and one output on the pallet flow system, and no effort moving pallets around on the rack creates fluidity in your warehouse. Additionally, pallet flow racks don’t require much maintenance so once your racks are inspected you are free to let your rack perform its job on its own!
Who should use pallet flow rack system?
Each warehouse runs very differently, so it’s important to consider your specific warehouse layout and space, volume of materials, and product turnover. If you have a large product volume that needs to maintain product flow, pallet flow rack would likely be a great storage solution for you. Pallet flow racks are ideal for storing products with expiration dates, which makes them great for the food and beverage industry as well as the medical industry.