Resources

April 09, 2018

7 Reasons You Might Consider Epoxy Floor Sealants Under Your Pallet Rack Shelving

If you are building a new warehouse or are starting from scratch with new pallet rack shelving, you might want to think twice before you put your pallet rack system or industrial conveyor system in. We know you want to get your industrial shelving up as soon as possible, because that inventory keeps coming in.

But there’s something you should seriously consider before moving forward, and that’s having epoxy floor sealants applied to the floor. And we’re not just talking about the floor paint that you might pick up at a big box store and apply to a garage floor. We mean polyurethane or epoxy floor coverings that will improve the way that your warehouse operates. Let’s take a look at some of the advantages these floor coatings can provide.

Anti-Slip Additives

One of the most common reasons that floor sealants are applied to warehouse floors is that they can have anti-slip additives applied to the top layer. It doesn’t take much to realize why this would be advantageous; the more traction an employee has, the less likely that they will slip and fall. Slips and falls can bring big problems. Not only is the trained employee out of the equation for a time — making it necessary to hire a less-trained employee or make the other employees work harder — but you also have to worry about lawsuits and OSHA becoming involved. At the very least it’s going to affect insurance premiums in the future.

Anti-slip epoxy coverings can be a great way to protect your employees, including those in (and in front of) forklifts. Spills are something that every warehouse has to worry about, whether it’s inventory that has sprung a leak, the rain blows in, or someone has simply spilled a soda next to the industrial pallet racking. Of course, that brings up another important aspect of anti-slip coatings on the epoxy flooring…

Easy Clean Up

If you’ve even spilled motor oil on an unprotected concrete garage floor, you know exactly how bad it can stain. As tough as concrete can be, it can stain easily because the surface is still porous. The minerals in rainwater can stain concrete easily, and you’re in for a surprise if a pumpkin rots on your concrete porch.

That’s not something you have to worry about nearly as much when it comes to having epoxy floor coatings under your pallet rack system. If the tow motor leaks a bit, you should be able to wipe it up with no problem and never know the difference. Whether your inventory is olive oil, motor oil, or mineral oil, you’ll be able to clean it up without making a permanent stain on the concrete. Oh, and that soda we talked about earlier — you know, the one that caused OSHA to visit you because there was no anti-slip surface applied– won’t stain the epoxy like it would exposed concrete.

Finally, we all know how important control joints are in a concrete surface, allowing the concrete to expand and contract while keeping the main slab in a single piece. Those are great, but they also collect direct, dust, and other grime that can be hard to sweep out. With concrete floor epoxy, you don’t have to worry about that kind of buildup.

Easier To Clean Skid Marks

Tires on forklifts wear down over time. Sometimes it’s because they’re moving under so much pressure, but…we’ll let’s admit it: sometimes employees are tricks on them, racing on them, or otherwise showing off. As much as we would discourage that because of the damage it might cause to your industrial pallets, it’s probably happening when you’re not watching. While you might need pallet repair if they veer off course, at least a protective floor coating will make it easier to clean up the skid parks.

Easy To Repair

A lot goes on in a warehouse, and the constant motion can lead to problems that crack a concrete floor. Inventory might get dropped from the pallet racks, leaving big cracks in the concrete and possibly even removing the top layer. Sometimes all it takes is that first crack in the top to lead to a slew of problems down the road.

Now we’re not saying that epoxy floor coatings are complete impervious to damage, but they are very hard. When you drop something on them, the damage is more localized than the major chips that can be taken out of concrete. Epoxy floor coatings can also be repaired more easily than concrete, because concrete usually has to be get pretty bad before a good repair will “take.”

Delineations

When you get your new pallet system or material handling system in place, you’ll probably want to have areas of the floor that are off-limits to certain kinds of traffic. For instance, you might put down tape on the floor to remind forklifts that their wheels shouldn’t get any closer to the pallets or they’ll end up hitting them. Other times you might have instructions painted on the floor, such as “hard hat area beyond this point” or “watch out for moving machinery.”

The problem with tape and paint is that they get torn or flake away over time, which causes them to lose their effectiveness. Instead, why not put the delineations and instructions under the transparent flooring, making it impossible to wear away? Epoxy floor coatings can have all sorts of designs, including company logos, embedded on top of one layer of coating but under another.

Oh, and here’s one more useful addition you can consider: glow in the dark elements. If you lose light in the warehouse, the battery-powered exit signs can only do so much. Glow in the dark strips can create arrows that lead employees in the right direction to the doors so that they make their way outside.

And speaking of lighting…

Improve Lighting

This is the aspect of epoxy floor coatings that most people never even think about: improved lighting. If you paint the floor white before putting down the epoxy, that paint is going to reflect the light instead of absorbing it like concrete does. This can reduce the need for overhead lighting, which is a cost-saving measure by itself. On top of that, dark corners of the warehouse aren’t as dark anymore, and the light reflecting from the floor can make it easier for workers to identify the writing on pallets that are on the bottommost shelves. Plus you’re saving money on electricity. Not bad for floor coatings that you’re already having installed for the other practical purposes we mentioned above.

Sure, you could simply paint the concrete itself white, but the white paint can wear away and white shows every skid mark, dirty footprint, and piece of mud. But if you cover that white layer with and epoxy coating, you could end up needing fewer overhead lighting fixtures and saving on energy at the same time.

Looks

Nobody expects a warehouse to look as good as a typical office building, but have you noticed that even the most industrial areas look a lot better than they did in the past? Everyone simply expects a cleaner work environment, even when it comes to the oft-maligned warehouse.

You might not have many people taking tours of your warehouse, but we bet there are a few customers you wouldn’t mind impressing with your operation and how efficient your pallet racks or industrial conveyor system are. And the fact is, epoxy floor coatings just look a lot better than bare concrete floors…partly because they’re not nearly as stained!

Consider Putting Epoxy Under Your Pallet Racks!

If you run a warehouse, you want to make it as safe and efficient as possible, and putting down a transparent epoxy floor coating before your pallet rack system goes in can go a long way to making it look great. And once it’s been applied, DAK can install your new pallet system; check them out right here.

 

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March 28, 2018

When Your Warehouse Should Consider Upgrading Its Pallet Rack System

We get it. Deciding to upgrade the pallet rack system in your warehouse is a big step to take. Industrial shelves and racking are imperative to a business, but they’re not exactly cheap. And while there’s no doubt that we offer affordable options, it’s usually a purchase that has to be budgeted for and planned well in advance.

Because industrial shelving units are so important, you need to stay on top of their maintenance and the amount of space they’re providing you in your warehouse. But when is the proper time to start investigating the next step in warehouse optimization? Here are a few situations that might occur that can let you know it’s time to consider an upgrade in your industrial shelving units.

 

Inspections Are Not Going Well

We recently discussed the reasons that you should have your warehouse systems periodically inspected, whether you have static pallet rack shelving or complex material handling systems. While it can be pretty obvious when conveyor belts are in need of repair, it’s just as important that you have your storage racking inspected by a professional to ensure that your employees and your stock is kept safe. Industrial storage racks are under a lot of pressure from the products they hold, and they’re also the part of a warehouse most-commonly hit by forklifts.

If you’ve had an inspector’s report come back with less-than-stellar reviews of your pallet system, it might be a good time to consider replacing the racks that are in the worst shape. If the report says that 80-percent of your racks are in good shape, you’ll still want to consider replacing the 20-percent that have failed inspections.

 

They Require More and More Repair

Because of forklift damage and the force of gravity, industrial warehouse shelving can reach the end of its usable life. Some will suffer more wear and tear than others, such as the corner units that are most likely to get clipped by moving warehouse equipment.

In many cases, it’s a good idea to get these shelving units repaired. We can repair sections of it for half the cost and in about a third of the time as a full replacement. But there comes a time when repairs are happening too often and getting in the way of productivity. At that point, it might be a better idea to simply replace the entire pallet rack and start from scratch.

 

You’re Running Out of Space

This is perhaps the most obvious answer to the question “when should I purchase new industrial shelving units for the warehouse?” But the options you have might surprise you:

  • When You Have Extra Room In Your Current Warehouse – Sometimes a warehouse is only partially filled with pallet racks. Perhaps the company decided to expand the number of pallets as business grew, starting with a few pallet rack shelves and expanding as necessary. We can help fill out that space with additional racks and make the most of the space.
  • When You Don’t Know You Have Extra Room In Your Warehouse – Many times there is extra space in a warehouse that’s going unused. Sometimes that space is simply vertical; taller storage racking can lead to more space being used. Other times the unused space is found on each shelf if the standard pallets aren’t filling the space efficiently. That’s where warehouse layout optimization comes in, which includes space-saving measures and slotting analysis. We can take a look at your current racks and suggest the most efficient way of using the space, finding you industrial storage racks that are so space-saving that you might be able to avoid the costs of building an additional warehouse.
  • When You Are Building a New Warehouse – Of course, there are times when a warehouse has reached its peak capacity and building another is inevitable. When that happens, be sure to get it off to a good start with a survey or your proposed space. We’ll propose a warehouse layout design that makes the best use of warehouse space and the traffic that it sees.

Your Productivity Is Slowing Down

Warehouse industrial shelving units can play a bigger part in the productivity of your business than you might think. Inefficient design of the units can make them slower to stock, or closed off portions of it can make getting a single pallet a 20-minute job as pallets crammed in front of the one you want to access have to be moved and restacked.

Additionally, poor warehouse layout design can prevent efficient use of forklifts and other loading equipment. If your business is ramping up and you’re moving more product, that’s great!…until your forklift operators start getting in each other’s way and warehouse employees on foot are put in greater danger.

This is the link to click on if your efficiency is going down and tempers start to run high in the warehouse. It details the many ways that Dak Equipment and Engineering can make your warehouse much more efficient than it currently is.

 

Buy Before The Prices Go Up

As we discussed in this article, steel prices are up considerably since the first of the year. And with recent tariffs that have been imposed on steel imports from China and Japan, it looks like prices are going to keep going up for the foreseeable future.

So when the subject comes up that we posed in the title of this article —”When Your Warehouse Should Consider Upgrading Its Pallet Rack System” — the best suggestion might simply be right now. Waiting much longer to upgrade or expand your warehouse storage solutions could lead to a situation in which you’re getting the same product for more money; why not avoid the price increase altogether and get ahead of the curve?

 

Let’s Start the Conversation

If you know that new pallet rack shelving is in your future, we’d love to talk with you about it. We can deliver and assemble the most efficient industrial shelving units out there to help your business run as smoothly as possible. Contact us today to get the conversation started.

 

 

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March 25, 2018

3 Mistakes You Might Make Without A Warehouse Optimization Expert

At Dak Equipment and Engineering, we sell a lot of industrial shelving for warehouses. But we’re also experts at warehouse layout design, and we’d be more than happy to help you set up your space for maximum efficiency.

Sometimes we sell pallet racks and offer our services at warehouse optimization, but the buyers don’t take us up on it. We won’t tell you who they are, but we’ve had people come back to us later asking us to help make the most of their space. Here are the most common mistakes that warehouse managers make when they try to handle their warehouse layout optimization themselves.

 

Putting Storage Racks Up Against the Walls

It’s perfectly natural to think that pushing a row of shelving up against the walks. After all, if that space isn’t used, then it’s completely wasted…right?

As counterintuitive as it might seem, putting storage racks up against the walls isn’t always the most efficient use of space. Sometimes it is, but other times it depends on the size of the warehouse, the access needed to each side of the shelving, and the entrance/exit points on the walls. The walls can be part of the aisles instead of the shelving. Don’t believe us? We’d be happy to show you some examples from our warehouse optimization experts!

 

Don’t Forget About Traffic

Most people who are buying industrial storage racks want to cram as many of them as possible into their warehouse, and that’s understandable. After all, who wouldn’t want to get the most storage possible so that another warehouse doesn’t have to be built.

Of course, squeezing as many pallet rack shelving units as possible into a warehouse can cause big problems when it comes to traffic. Forklifts and other machinery might not be able to clear corners cleanly, leading to dropped merchandise and damaged racks. They might have to back up and pull forward multiple times just to get around corners, and trust us, you’ll hear about it if they do!

Instead of cramming everything in, contact us about warehouse layout optimization. We can get the best racks into any space in order to create the most efficient warehouse possible.

 

Think Like a Typewriter

Well that was certainly the strangest heading we’ve typed in a while…

What does it mean to think like a typewriter? Early typewriters were created so that the letters on the swinging arms would be most likely to come from different directions. Keys coming from the same direction were more likely to jam, so the letters were placed on the keyboard to have the arms swinging in from different directions as often as possible. How does this apply to warehouse optimization? Sometimes the most obvious placement of particular pallets isn’t the most efficient placement. You might at first thing that it’s a good idea to place your #1 seller and your #2 seller in the first and second racks. But then you might have two forklifts vying for side by side spaces at the same time. Maybe it’s better to place those products on opposites ends so that the forklifts can access them more efficiently. Our warehouse layout design experts can help.

 

Our Warehouse Consultants Can Help

The fact is, warehouse optimization is a lot more complex than most people realize, but working with a professional can get you a lot more out of the space you have. We’re more than happy to design an efficient pallet rack system, sell it, and install it so that you get the longest life from it and the safest use. Let’s get the process started! Click here.

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