If you run a business, and especially an industrial or warehousing operation, you have many storage solutions available to you. From various types of shelving — steel/metal, wire, and rivet — to storage bins and crates, the need to store, protect, and display inventory is critical to organizational efficiency and success. Plastic storage bins and containers can help keep your inventory organized and easily accessible.
Why Storage Bins?
There are several reasons to use plastic storage bins and containers, but the need for mobile storage options varies depending on the warehouse or factory layout, industry, and inventory, among other factors.
Storing inventory on the floor increases clutter and potential safety hazards, reduces distribution efficiency and can damage items. Not every type of inventory requires heavy-duty and expensive metal shelving systems.
Wood or Plastic?
Wooden storage has its advantages, namely low cost, but wooden crates are more damage-prone than modern plastics. Other than wood’s susceptibility to moisture, it’s also at risk of suffering insect damage and is more likely to crack or splinter from regular use or drops.
High-quality plastic containers are relatively inexpensive. Even the more expensive styles are a more cost-effective option due to their long-term durability.
What’s So Special About Plastic Storage Bins?
Plastic storage bins and containers offer several advantages to the warehouse manager or shop foreman. These include:
Easier to clean
Wooden crates and containers are porous and can become affected by moisture, absorbing water, and losing structural integrity. The porosity of wood can also invite the growth of bacteria.
Metals, particularly iron alloys, such as steel, are susceptible to rust — that’s why companies that produce metal storage options, such as shelving units, powder-coat, or plate them. However, coatings and plating can wear off or chip with age.
Modern plastics, however, are inherently waterproof, maintaining their appearance and allowing for easy cleaning. Some are autoclavable when sterility counts. You can often clean an empty plastic container with water and detergent.
One of the most immediate advantages of plastic storage bins is cost. These are a simple, inexpensive option for budget-conscious warehouse managers who want to improve efficiency while staying within their budget.
Many plastic storage containers are impact-resistant and can withstand careless or rough handling by forklift operators and other warehouse workers. Naturally, plastic doesn’t hold up to steel, but it rarely has to.
Metal shelving can be heavy and difficult to maneuver, whereas plastic storage bins are relatively lightweight and easy to move. Many modern plastic storage bins have anti-slip bottoms, which can prevent accidental trips and falls. Safety is critical to your personnel’s health, and plastic bins help ensure your inventory is less likely to be damaged during storage and transport.
Beyond simple cleaning, plastic storage boxes and bins don’t require any special maintenance.
Your warehouse has a limited amount of storage space, so you have to economize. Maximizing the use of available space increasingly means arranging storage units and inventory vertically. Many plastic storage units are stackable — one can be stacked on top of another — so you’re able to effectively reduce clutter on the shop or warehouse floor.
You can recycle many types of plastic storage bins when they’re no longer needed, which reduces waste.
At Shelving & Rack Systems, Inc., we know firsthand the importance of storing inventory efficiently to your workers’ safety and the timely retrieval of items for transport and distribution.
We specialize in several storage solutions to maximize the space available to you, and plastic storage bins are a low-cost, simple, and safe way to arrange your inventory. Browse our online catalog or call us at (800) 589-7225 to discuss your storage options. Whether for a medical facility, fulfillment center, or restaurant storeroom, we have the ideal storage containers and racks to safely store your products.