Warehouse Equipment

December 05, 2017

The Highest Density Configuration for Pallet Shelves

The biggest issue your warehouse is going to face is how to maximize your storage space. It’s a problem that constantly plagues warehouses around the country and it’s something that our warehouse design team has a lot of experience with. Some warehouses go to extreme measures to create more space in their facility, which can sometimes lead to an unsafe work environment and could even slow down their productivity, negating any benefits they may have had from the increase in storage capacity.

We’ve worked with warehouses in every industry to help them increase their storage capacity without having to move their facility or undergo expensive and time-consuming construction. How you maximize your storage capacity is going to depend on the kind of space you have, what you are storing, and how often you need to get to it. But if you are simply looking for the most storage in the least amount of space, then drive-in pallet shelves are the answer. Learn more about this warehouse storage method and whether or not it could be the one that you need in your facility!

All About Drive-In Pallet Shelves

The Advantages

The main advantage of drive-in pallet racking is the high-density storage opportunities. The shelving is made to be close together, so you don’t have to worry about sacrificing too much of your floor space to aisles. If you have a lot of the same product to store, it’s especially good. That’s because you can not only go double deep with your rows, you can go virtually as deep as you like. We’ve seen warehouses that go ten rows or deeper. Plus, drive-through pallet racking can be customized for the needs of your warehouse and your equipment. That means if you need racking that’s a little wider, narrower, shorter, or taller than normal, that’s no problem. This system also makes it very easy to load and unload items quickly, meaning you’ll spend less time moving product in and out of your warehouse. That’s a big boost to productivity.

  • Drive-in pallet shelving is made to be close together.
  • It’s extremely cost-effective for the amount of storage you get.
  • They can be double deep, or even stacked ten or more deep!
  • Limits the number of aisles you need to get more storage space.
  • Can be customized to meet the needs of your warehouse.
  • Easy to move product in and out of the warehouse.

The Disadvantages

While there are a lot of great things about drive-through pallet racking, it’s not a perfect system. It’s really ideally suited to certain warehouses, but for others, it could end up slowing down productivity more than helping with their storage issues. First of all, you need to be operating forklifts within your warehouse to make them work. If you aren’t already, this could mean a sizable investment to your company. Secondly, this system is ideally suited for a warehouse that’s storage a large number of palletized items. If you are dealing with a lot of cartons or small items, then it’s not going to be a good system for you. And finally, this pallet racking system uses the Last-In-First-Out method, so if you have items that are time sensitive, you could end up with a lot of spoiled product.

  • It allows an entry and exit for your forklift, but not much else.
  • Pulling items off of the shelves can be a slow process if items are further back.
  • Not good for cartons or small items.
  • Not good for items that can spoil as it uses a Last-In-First-Out system.

Who Should Use Drive-In Pallet Racking?

So who should use a drive-in or drive-thru pallet shelves system? This can be a great method for anything who has a lot of the same product to store, and products are on relatively the same size of pallets. While drive-in pallet shelves can be made in virtually any size that you need, for them to be an effective use of your space you’ll want to be storing items that are about the same size. If this sounds like your materials handling facility and the items you are working with, drive-thru pallet shelves can maximize the space you have in a very affordable way. It might be worth exploring whether or not this storage method is going to be the right one for your warehouse, as it could mean giving you a lot of extra space that you might desperately need.

  • Warehouses with a small number of products
  • Warehouse with products that are not time sensitive
  • Warehouses with products that need to be stored for a long period of time

 

DAK Can Help You Find the Right Storage Solutions for Your Warehouse

Drive-in pallet racking isn’t right for every warehouse, but it is right for a lot of them. If this isn’t the right system for you, we can help you find the one that is. If you are looking for ways to increase your storage capacity, then there are other methods available including:

  • Mezzanine levels. This can increase your square footage without expanding your building.
  • Cantilever racking systems. Great for long item storage without taking up a big footprint.
  • Modular offices. Frees up space on the warehouse floor by moving admin and management into their own space.
  • Expanding storage upwards. Many warehouses aren’t utilizing the space they have overhead!
  • Reconfiguring the warehouse floor. Sometimes it’s just a matter of rearranging the warehouse to maximize the space you have. Working with an experienced warehouse designer can bring you even better results.

Want to learn more about all the storage solutions available for your facility? Visit the DAK Equipment & Engineering website then get in contact with our project managers. Our team can help you discover the solutions that you need in order to overcome any challenges your warehouse is currently facing. They’ll make sure this is the right fit for your facility and help you get the right products ordered. We can even help with your installation! Give us a call or use the form on our website. We’d love to get to work on maximizing your warehouse space today!

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November 25, 2017

Everything You Need for Your Dock

DAK Equipment & Engineering is your go-to source for warehouse equipment, and that includes everything that you need for your dock. Your dock is an important hub in your warehouse. It’s the transfer station where items need to go out and come in safely and where transportation meets your storage. Optimizing your dock space can help you minimize the number of steps your workers need to take to get items safely in and out of the door, maximize quality control within the warehouse, and make receiving and shipping easier and more profitable than ever before. It might seem like a small area of your warehouse, but it’s likely the busiest and most important one.

Dock equipment should help you do all of the jobs of the dock safer and more efficiently than ever. We’ve helped warehouses across the country find the dock equipment that they need and we’re ready to do the same thing for you. No two docks are the same, but there are certain things we routinely recommend to warehouse managers to help improve their docking areas. Check out these suggestions and see if they might be right for your dock! If they are, you can purchase them by giving our team a call or contacting us through our website.

Great Items That Can Benefit Your Docking Area

Dock Boards

Dock boards are usually made of aluminum or another metal and often have bumpers along the edge to help guide equipment. They help create a small ramp for hand trucks and other equipment to get on and off of trucks or pallets. They make it easier and safer to load or unload trucks. We carry all sizes of dock boards, including the mini curb jumpers. Anything you can do to make getting items on and off of trucks easier is going to increase your productivity!

Dock Plates

These are similar to dock boards, but won’t have the additional structure of bumpers along the edge and are instead a flat piece of metal (usually aluminum). Like dock boards, they’ll have locking legs or other mechanisms underneath to give you the height you need to safely move product on and off of the truck. Talk to one of our project managers to determine if a dock board or a dock plate is the right choice for your space.

Bumpers

Protect your building from damage with dock bumpers. We carry corner, wall, and I-beam bumpers for your dock. Not only will bumpers help keep your building safe, but they’ll help prevent damage to trucks that are backed up too far, too. They can act as a guide for drivers to let them know when and where to stop. You’ll be glad you put them in place, and your drivers will be, too.

Lifts

Give your workers a lift! Our motorized lifts make it easy to get up and down to load and unload equipment and materials, eliminate the risk of injury on ladders. Lifts can also make it easier for your team to load or unload inventory on higher shelves. We offer one-person and two-person lifts in numerous options so you can find the exact lift you need. Lifts can be used throughout the warehouse, too, making them an investment in the entire operation and not just the dock.

Lighting

Light up your dock day or night and give workers the visibility they need to get the job done. Better visibility can lead to faster order picking and fewer worker injuries. It can even help eliminate strain injuries such as headaches and neck aches. The right lighting is a must for a warehouse, and the dock is no exception to this rule. Make sure you have the lighting you need for both day and night activities at the dock, too, so productivity doesn’t go down when the sun does.

Seal Shelters

Eliminate pesky drafts and moisture from your dock with air curtains and dock seals from DAK. Your dock is a major opening to your warehouse. If you don’t seal it properly, you could be leaving your inventory vulnerable to the elements as well as pests like mice and ants. It can also make it a lot more expensive to heat and cool your warehouse. Make sure your doors are sealed correctly to keep the bad stuff out and the good stuff in.

Strip Doors

Regulate temperatures without impeding the flow of traffic through strip doors. Strip doors are a great alternative to leaving a door open all the time or having a door that’s opening and closing constantly. Strip doors allow workers and machinery to move through freely, eliminating the time-wasting tasks of opening and closing a door frequently. They also allow visibility, so workers and machinery operators can see what’s going on beyond a doorway.

Trailer Jacks

If you are moving pallets around regularly at your dock, you need to get a pallet jack. Pallet jacks can help you move pallets quickly without the need for a forklift, giving more of your workers the ability to move items when needed and clear space without firing up the forklift. Pallet jacks are easy to operate and investing in a good one means you’ll have a reliable way to move pallets for the next decade or more.

Looking for More for Your Dock?

 

There are plenty of other dock accessories and equipment for sale in the DAK online store! Head over there and add what you need to your order for wholesale pallet racks. We’ll ship it all to you as quickly as possible so you can start enjoying the top quality materials and equipment from DAK! You need to make sure your dock has everything it needs in order to function at peak productivity; it’s the hub of your warehouse and the better it works, the better your entire warehouse will function.

Have questions about an item you see in our store or can’t find something you need? Give us a call at 630-516-1115 and we’ll get you the information you need or help you locate a product. Our project managers are available to help you overhaul your dock and increase your productivity and your bottom line!

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November 05, 2017

Why Even a Little Column Damage on Your Pallet Racking is a Big Deal

Your pallet racking is responsible for most of your warehouse’s main function: storage. It’s easy to take pallet racking for granted when you work around it every day, but it really is the skeletal system of the warehouse environment and without it, you certainly wouldn’t be able to function as well as you do. That’s why it’s important to take care of it. Caring for your pallet racking can include doing things such as:

  • Keeping it clean and organized
  • Inspecting it regularly
  • Repairing damage as soon as possible

That last item on the list can prove to be a tricky one in certain circumstances; after all, how much damage is too much damage? If you can’t see the damage, does it really count? And if the racking still seems to be sturdy, can you ignore it?

The truth is even a small amount of damage to your pallet racking, especially to the upright supports and columns, can cause big problems for you in the future. While most pallet racks are reliable, when the columns of your racks are damaged even slightly you run the risk of your pallet racks collapsing.

The Big Impact of Collapsing Racking

This is every warehouse manager’s nightmare. A racking collapse can impact your warehouse in a lot of different ways:

  • Additional expenses. It’s going to cost you to clean up the mess that’s left behind after a racking collapse. You’ll end up damaging out a lot of inventory, paying workers overtime to get the mess cleaned up, and you’ll need to invest in new, undamaged pallet racking. And that’s just the beginning. A racking collapse can lead to lost business and productivity, both of which will have a big impact on your bottom line. And worst of all, if workers are injured during the collapse, you’ll be facing worker’s compensation claims and potentially even a lawsuit.
  • Lost time. Time is money, especially in business. A racking collapse can put you behind schedule for days and potentially even weeks or longer, depending on the severity of the collapse and how much inventory you lose afterward. Instead of fulfilling orders and getting them out the door, your team is going to be focused on cleaning up, and that’s not going to make you any money.
  • Risk of injuries. This is the worst part of a racking collapse. Your employees could be injured, sometimes in life-changing ways, and there are numerous instances of workers being killed in a collapse. Not only do you have an obligation to create a safe environment for your team, this could badly damage the reputation of your company for years to come. Injuries come with big price tags, too, including worker’s compensation claims, lawsuits, the cost of replacing injured workers, and the damage to morale among the rest of your team.

How to Protect Your Uprights

There are a number of safety measures you can take to help prevent damage to the columns of your racks from forklifts. There are some safety measures that are required by OSHA and some that are voluntary, but warehouses try to skip on purchasing these items in order to save some money in the budget will quickly regret that choice. Options for rack protection include:

  • Corner guards
  • Floor mounted barriers
  • Bollard post covers
  • Column guards
  • End-of-aisle rack guards

The main function of any of these pieces of safety equipment is to prevent your forklift or other machinery from accidentally backing into the frame of the pallet rack. This is the most common cause of pallet racking damage. Even if you don’t have forklifts in operation within your warehouse, though, you should consider putting this safety equipment in place. Even a wayward hand truck could end up damaging your pallet racks. If you aren’t sure which options are right for your warehouse, a DAK project manager can help you determine which equipment is necessary to keep your warehouse equipment and your team safe.

How Much Damage is Too Much Damage?

Even a small amount of column damage can turn into a big issue. That’s because any structural damage can cause the entire rack to collapse. As a general rule, if your columns have suffered more than a ½” of deflection, you’ll want to replace them right away. That small amount of damage can be hard to see with the naked eye, which is another reason that consistent and thorough inspections of your warehouse are done on a regular basis.

For a simple way to determine any deflection, hold a straightedge such as a yardstick up to the column and measure the gaps between the column and the straightedge. If you measure greater than a ½”, it’s time to call DAK Equipment & Engineering. That indicates that the column supports have been compromised and the entire structure of the pallet rack has been weakened.

How DAK Equipment Can Help

We offer a few options for rack repair. First, we can attempt to repair the rack, saving you the cost of replacement. Unfortunately, this isn’t always an option, so we can also replace the parts and pieces that are putting your pallet racks in danger. Once we’ve repaired the damage, we’ll make sure you have the upright protection that will prevent similar damage in the future. Over the lifetime of your warehouse, this could end up saving you thousands in repair and replacement costs.

Get In Touch with Us Today

Give DAK Equipment a call today and make an appointment with us for rack repair or a facility inspection. You can also put in an order through our online store for upright protection. Whatever you need to make your facility safe and keep your pallet racks in good shape, DAK has it! Our project managers are ready to get to work on finding you the racking and safety equipment you need or arranging for the repair or installation team required. Our job is to help you make your warehouse safer and more productive, so get in touch with us today so we can get to work!

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