Illinois

December 30, 2017

Find a Qualified Team for Your Racking Inspections

Regular racking inspections aren’t just a good idea; they are mandated by Federal regulations. Skip your annual pallet racking inspection and you could end up facing huge fines from OSHA, not to mention putting your company in jeopardy of major litigation battles for negligence. Annual inspections are required, but doing inspections more often can benefit your warehouse in a lot of ways. Besides, regular racking inspections are just good common sense. They help:

  • Lower the risk of injury within the warehouse. Damage racking is in danger of failing, meaning it could end up bowing, bending, or even completely collapsing. Any product or employees who happen to be in the way when that happens are at risk of a major injury.
  • Decrease damaged product rates. When racking is damaged, it can result in damaged product if the racking fails. You’ll have to damage out those goods, losing money in the process and potentially slowing down the fulfillment of customer orders.
  • Prolong the life of your equipment. Just like all of your warehouse equipment, the better you take care of it, the longer it’s going to last. Regular inspections and repairs to your racking are part of taking care of it!

Most warehouse managers understand the importance of regular inspections. What they might not know is how to find a qualified inspector. Here are a few tips about what to look for in a racking inspector to help make your search an easier one.

How to Find a Qualified Racking Inspector

  • Experience counts when it comes to inspections. Sometimes damaged racking isn’t so obvious. It takes an experienced inspector to know where racking is most likely to be damaged as well as to have a keen eye for potential problems in hidden places. While new inspectors could be excellent at their job, finding an inspector with some experience in the field could be beneficial to your company. Experienced inspectors may have certifications that give them knowledge and training needed to spot problems that others might pass by.
  • Look for someone who understands your industry. Inspecting a cold food storage facility is a lot different than inspecting an automobile parts warehouse. They are going to use different equipment and have different risk factors for damage. Working with an inspector who has experience with facilities like yours can give them inside knowledge about the risks you are facing and where your racking is most likely to be damaged.
  • If they can do repairs, too, that’s a plus. With almost every inspection, you are going to be left with a list of repairs. It can be a hassle to have to then go out and find a qualified repair team to manage the repairs for your facility. Some racking inspection teams can provide repair services as well, often at the same time. This is a great resource that can help you save on the cost of your repairs; there may be a discount available for using their repair services, and they’ll be able to judge whether the piece can be repairs or needs to replaced right there on site.

Our Inspection Team is Ready to Help

DAK Equipment & Engineering offers rack inspection services in Illinois and throughout the Midwest. We can partner with your warehouse to provide you with experienced racking inspections and repair services. We’ve been a trusted name in the warehouse industry for decades, so you can count on our services to deliver the quality your warehouse needs.

Making sure you schedule regular inspections with the DAK team is vital. We’ve seen many instances where a small issue with a rack or conveyor belt turned into a costly headache. You depend on this equipment to keep your business moving, so be sure you are taking good care of it so it can take good care of you. Our inspection team will perform a thorough inspection of the wholesale racking and equipment at your facility, including interviewing employees and examining gears and bolts. If we find a problem, we’ll help you fix it, and most of the time we can offer a repair solution that will help you save on the cost of a full replacement. Our services can save you up to half on the cost of replacement and often in a third of the amount of time, meaning not only do you save money, but you get your warehouse back to work faster.

How long has it been since your last inspection? If it’s been a while, or even if you can’t remember the last time you had a thorough inspection at your facility, we’re happy to help. Call the DAK Equipment team in Chicago and let’s set up an appointment for one of our skilled, professional and experienced team members to come to your site. You’ll love how our inspection services help you save on replacement costs and prevent downtime on your production lines!

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December 20, 2017

The Pros and Cons of Doing Rack Repair Yourself

When you are doing a routine inspection in your facility for damage to your pallet racks, you are likely going to find some issues on occasion. That’s just the nature of a busy material handling facility, where people and forklifts are hard at work. Forklifts accidentally run into upright supports, people drop items onto racking from high places, and a lot of the damage goes unnoticed and undocumented until you do an inspection. The important thing is that you cannot ignore damage once it’s been found; it needs to be dealt with as quickly as possible. Allowing damaged warehouse equipment to continue to be in use will put your team at risk and heightens the chance you could experience a racking collapse. Attending to the repairs as quickly as possible will help ensure safety in the warehouse and efficient processing of orders.

But when you find those issues, should you hire a rack repair professional? Or should you attempt the repairs yourself? After all, no one knows your warehouse better than you do. On the other hand, can you really repair the racks so they are structurally sound? You need to weight the pros and cons before you make this decision.

Should You Do Rack Repair Yourself or Hire a Professional?

The Pros of Doing It Yourself

 

  • It could save your warehouse money. By doing the work yourself, you won’t have to pay a professional. You can pull people from your own team and put them to work on the repairs without paying more money to an outside company. That means you keep more money in the warehouse and directed towards your bottom line.
  • It could be faster. Waiting for a professional rack repair team to come to your facility could take some time, and while you are waiting for them, it could result in a slow down on production within your warehouse. Doing it yourself means you can get to work on the problem right away.

The Cons of Doing It Yourself

  • Unless you have years of experience and the right training, you might not be able to get the repairs done correctly. Rack repair can’t be learned by watching online tutorials; there is a lot of engineering that goes into the repair process to ensure that the structure is sound and poses no danger of collapse.
  • If you end up using your own internal team to do the repairs, you are probably pulling them away from other tasks. You hired those team members to do those tasks, not to focus on rack repair, and distracting them from their jobs could actually be having a negative impact on your bottom line.
  • Improperly repaired racks can pose as much–or even more–danger to your materials and workers than a damaged rack. You could actually end up making the rack structurally weaker than it was before, unwittingly putting your facility at even more risk.
  • Most rack repair services are very affordable. Companies will attempt to complete the repairs without needing to replace pieces (when it’s safe to do so) so you avoid the cost of replacement. That can save you up to a third of the cost, but only a professional will be able to determine whether repair or replacement is the best choice for your facility.
  • Even expensive rack repair is cheaper in the long run. A pallet rack collapse can cost thousands of dollars in damage, not to mention the production time you’ll lose as your team attempts to clean up the mess. If a member of your team is hurt by damaged racking, then you will face the expense of worker’s compensation claims and potentially even a lawsuit.

Hiring a Professional Is Almost Always the Right Choice

Unless you have an experienced rack repair specialist on your team, it’s almost always the smarter choice to hire a professional to do the necessary rack repairs in your warehouse. The initial lure of saving time and money taking the DIY approach starts to look less appealing when you consider the long-term costs that you could accrue. Hiring a professional gives you the peace of mind of knowing the repairs have been done correctly and there is little or no danger of the problem becoming worse in the future. Professional rack repair team can often provide inspection services, too, meaning you can get both jobs done at once by a team that you can trust. Connecting with a great resource like this can make your warehouse a safer place to work.

If you’ve discovered rack damage in your facility, give the DAK Equipment & Engineering team a call. We can give you an estimate on the work you need to be done so you have a clear picture of the cost–and how affordable rack repair can be. Call us at 855-863-0340 today or contact us through our website and let’s talk about the repair or replacement services you need.

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December 15, 2017

The Best Pallet Racks When You Don’t Need Access 100% of the Time

We recently wrote about the pallet racks you’ll want to use if you want the densest storage capacity in your warehouse. While dense storage is good, it’s not right for every warehouse and should only be used when it can actually benefit your operation. To find the right pallet racking, you need to take into consideration a number of factors such as what you are storing and how often you need to access it. For most warehouses, the answer to their storage needs is the standard selective pallet rack. This is the most common storage solution in warehouses in Illinois as well as the rest of the world. These pallet racks are great for warehouses that handle a high number of SKUs and need nearly constant access to all of their inventory, most likely to fulfill orders rapidly. But that’s not the only kind of warehouse that exists, and a lot of warehouses store inventory that they don’t need access to 100% of the time. If that’s the case for your facility, then you might want to consider installing double deep pallet racks.

Discover the Advantages of Double Deep Pallet Racks

What are double deep pallet racks?

Double deep pallet racks place two pallet racks together. This increases your storage capacity by eliminating an aisle space, giving you more storage density in the same square footage. It’s an easy way to increase your storage capacity without the expense of expanding your facility; most warehouses can move to a double deep pallet racking system by simply rearranging their facility, doubling up pallet racks, and ordering a few pieces of additional racking. Double deep pallet racks can be built in virtually any size to meet almost any storage demands, so a facility can get the customized storage that they need. Plus, as your inventory changes, it’s easy to convert your double deep pallet racks back to single row pallet racks, giving you some flexibility when it comes to your storage needs.

How do they work in a warehouse?

The idea behind double deep pallet racks is that you’ll be able to store seldom needed items at the back of the rack with high-demand items in the front. When your pickers need to access the items in the back, they’ll be able to access them by moving the front product out of the way (most likely with a pallet jack or forklift) and getting the items out of the back. This is also a useful way to manage duplicate inventory without taking up too much of your storage space. Keep in mind that when you use double deep pallet racks, you’ll only have access to about 50% of your inventory at any given time because have of it is stored behind the other half. That’s why this system is ideal for warehouses that have a large amount of inventory that they don’t need to access all of the time.

Use Double Deep Racking With Your Current Racking System

You can use the double deep racking method with a number of pallet racking systems. Make your drive-thru pallet racks double deep or eliminate aisles by making your selective pallet racking double deep. You’ll be able to increase the density of your storage and keep seldom-needed items out of the way. Just make sure it’s the method that’s going to work for your warehouse; if you need constant access to all of your inventory, moving to a double deep system could actually slow down your productivity because your team will need to move items out of the way more often. It may be ideal to add to an aisle or two of your warehouse, though, especially when you need to store a large number of items long term.

The Pros and Cons

Pros

  • It can increase your pallet storage capacity by 10% or more
  • Makes 50% of your SKUs easily available for pick and pack
  • Uses more of your floor space for efficient storage instead of aisle space
  • You can convert between single row and double deep as needed

Cons

  • 50% of your inventory will be harder to access
  • You may need specialized equipment to reach pallets that are further back
  • Can slow productivity when you need to access back pallets
  • It can be difficult to see pallets in the back

Looking For the Ultimate Warehouse Storage Solutions?

We have them. There is an infinite number of ways that you can set up your warehouse, but our warehouse design experts and warehouse consultants can help you find the setup that’s optimized to the needs of your warehouse operation. Our team can help you find the right configuration of equipment to improve warehouse productivity and lower your costs. Get in touch with us today to purchase your double deep, selective pallet racks or other warehouse equipment. Call us at 855-863-0340 or use the form on our website and one of our project managers will be in touch with you right away!

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