Modern commercial warehouses evolved from railway depots and granaries and became popular and more specialized after World War II. During the war, warehouses were used to house mass produced war supplies, and the only commercial shelving was pallet racks which had been used routinely in warehouses since the invention of the forklift in the early 1900s.
Today’s warehouse racking systems optimize the warehouse workflow. Your warehouse racking system enables you to monitor and control inventory and choosing the right system for your product also enables you to improve accuracy and efficiency.
Most racking systems are built for durability, but when they begin to show signs of damage such as corrosion and cracked or bent beams it may be time for an upgrade. Damaged, faulty or old racking systems adversely impact organization, productivity and are a safety risk.
The following 6 signs means it is time to upgrade your racking system:
1. Inspection problems
Racking system inspections are required to ensure your employees and visitors are safe and to reduce your legal risks. Inspect your racking systems biannually for deterioration, dents and other damage. The decision to repair or replace the racking system will depend on the scope of the issue. It may be more cost-effective to replace than repair the racks.
2. Inspections routinely requiring repairs
If your inspections of your racking systems are routinely requiring repairs; it may be time to upgrade. Parts and joints become worn from heavy use and some damage is inevitable. Constantly repairing your racking system is a sign that you should be considering and budgeting for a long-term solution.
Whether it is due to wear and tear or overloading, you are placing your employees in risk of an injury.
A continuously faulty racking system can be a sign of an underlying problem such as poor design which could result in the rack collapsing. Repeated repairs to a rack may also cause it to be unsafe.
3. Beam deflection
Even when weight limits are obeyed and there are sufficient arms to support a load, beams naturally deflect under the weight of a heavy load, but this should disappear as soon as you move the product. If the beam remains deflected after the product has been removed, then it is damaged.
Continuing to reload your racking system places your rack at risk of collapsing and your employees in danger of falling stock. Either replace the beam or purchase a different racking system that can support the weight of the stock.
Areas with tarnished beams, flaking paint or rust is a sign that the metal is weakening. The frames will no longer be able to support the weight allowance if the metal is too fragile. There is no quick fix for this problem and replacement is the only solution.
5. No room for expansion
If you have run out of space in your warehouse and cannot expand vertically using your current racking system; it may be time to consider a different racking system. Your current system may be outdated and unable to integrate with technology you’ve introduced to your warehouse in order to expand.
6. Relocating to a new facility
If your budget allows, relocation is the ideal time to upgrade your current system and streamline your operation. If money is tight consider buying used warehouse racking. It may be more up to date than what you currently use and more affordable than buying new. You can also consider retrofitting your current system.
If your business is facing inventory storage challenges, please contact a member of our team at 1-800-589-7225 (RACK) or complete our online contact form. We can help you upgrade, redesign or simply replace your current warehouse racking system. We offer a full range of competitively priced new and used material and handling systems to ensure your warehouse is operating at its maximum potential.