What Factors Impact the Prices of Pallet Racking?

When you’re searching for used or new pallet racking for your warehouse or distribution center, it’s important to know what factors affect pricing, especially if you’re a startup company or on a strict budget. Once you have this information, you can plan your warehouse layout or expansion more carefully, reducing unnecessary costs.

One of the most important factors affecting the pricing of a pallet racking system is whether it’s used or new. Used pallet racks are less expensive than new systems, reducing the initial capital investment significantly. In addition, used pallet racks can vary in price according to their condition, age, and whether they ship fully disassembled or partially assembled.

However, for used pallet racking to be cost-effective, it’s important to source a reputable supplier and ensure the system has been thoroughly inspected for signs of damage.

There’s also no lead time when ordering used pallet racks, so you’ll have your storage systems earlier.

Assembly/Manufacturing Method

There are two fabrication methods used in pallet racking systems that affect the pricing.

Roll formed racking

Roll formed racking is the standard option, suitable for a wide variety of common storage applications. In this system, the horizontal beams attach to the vertical uprights using teardrop-shaped slots — no bolts or additional fasteners are required. The components are cold-rolled steel and lightly constructed by comparison.

Structural racking

Structural racking offers a heavy-duty alternative to roll-formed racking. Structural-steel racking uses hot-rolled, C-channel components that the manufacturer bolts together. Structural racking is generally more expensive than roll formed racking and is often heavier, increasing shipping costs. However, structural racking offers higher upright frame and beam capacities than roll-formed racking.

In addition, structural racking is common to systems designed for use in high-traffic warehouses because it’s more resistant to forklift impact damage. As roll formed racking is made from a lightweight material, it’s more susceptible to damage from forklift collisions.

Types of Pallet Racks

The type of pallet rack you choose can also affect the price. There are several types of pallet racking systems to choose from, depending on the specific requirements of your warehouse. Some pallet racking systems are simple to manufacture and assemble. Others are comparatively complex. These include:

Selective pallet racking

Selective pallet racks are a simple and low-density storage solution for warehouses that require high selectivity. Selective pallet racks are available in various configurations and sizes and are compatible with standard material handling equipment.

Roll formed selective pallet racking is the least expensive option, per pallet position, on the market. Structural selective racking is more expensive, although still affordable for many warehouses.

Drive-in racking

A high-density, low-selectivity system designed to allow forklift trucks to enter the racks for loading and unloading. Drive-in racking is moderately expensive at two to five times the cost per pallet position of roll formed selective racking.

However, this system can significantly increase the storage capacity of a warehouse that needs to store and retrieve homogeneous products on a LIFO basis.

Push back racking

used push back pallet racking

Push back racking is a last in, first out (LIFO), high-density, low-selectivity system that uses carts on rails set at an incline to store palletized inventory. A forklift truck places the first pallet on the top cart. When a truck loads a second pallet, this moves the first pallet and its corresponding cart to the back, making the second cart ready for pallet placement.

When a forklift truck retrieves the second pallet, the first pallet moves forward one position. Push back racking can be three to six times as expensive as selective racking per pallet position.

Pallet flow racking

Pallet flow racking, also known as gravity-assisted racking, uses roller lanes to transport pallets from the back of the system, where workers load inventory, to the front for retrieval.

As pallet flow racks are more complicated by design and more expensive to manufacture and assemble, they’re also more expensive to purchase. Pallet flow racking is the most expensive type of racking you can buy; therefore, it’s important to evaluate the needs of your warehouse in detail before installing this type of system.

Your Location

Where your warehouse is located can also affect the cost of racking systems. Some states, such as California, impose more stringent seismic requirements on pallet racking systems to ensure they’re capable of withstanding the effects of an earthquake.

Finding the Most Cost-Effective Pallet Racks

At Shelving + Rack Systems, Inc., we’re committed to helping you find the perfect storage solution for your warehouse. Because we supply shelving and racking systems for a wide variety of applications, we know the importance of reducing costs wherever possible.

If you’d like to discuss the most cost-effective storage systems for your warehouse, give us a call at (800) 589-7225.