Racking is used for storing the products in warehouses or distribution facilities. When setting up a new warehouse for your products, it is important to consider the type of racking system suitable for your products and operation flow. The selection of racking system will be mainly based on the type, physical size, quantity, and weight of the products/products to be stored. Other important factors we may need to consider when selecting the type of racking system also include the frequency of use of the products and the types of equipment we use to move the products in and out of the racking storage. Normally the products stored in the racking system will be packed in pallets, cartons, or large individual units. There are few types of racking systems we commonly use in the warehouse and distribution center. Each type is having its own benefits in terms of storage capability and accessibility.
1. Selective Racking
The selective Racking system is the most common and simplest racking system that is widely used for heavy-duty applications as it is able to handle harsh storage conditions such as cold storage environments below 50 degrees Celsius. This system has only one pallet deep and a maximum of two racks that are placed together. It has a load capacity that ranges from 500 to 6000 kg per level and a maximum height of 12.80m. The basic components of the selective racking system include horizontal brace, load beams, Upright frame, pallet support, footplate, and guard rail. We can add wire mesh or steel wheels to provide additional support to the system. The key advantage of a selective racking system is its flexibility in the design. It is assembled by bolts and can be resembled when we need to adjust the height between different levels or move the system. In this case, it can store different types of goods in various sizes and specifications, it can be changed to fit the products and increase the overall storage capacity.
The cost of using a selective racking system is also lower than other types of racking systems as the products can be loaded and moved easily with a forklift, there is also no extra spending on the loading or unloading system. The products will be stored side-by-side and forklift has the direct access to each pallet from the aisle. It provides added convenience as the warehouse does not need to follow First-In-First-Out (FIFO) or Last-In-First-Out (LIFO) basics. This has also become its main disadvantage as the way of storage arrangement will take up a lot of space in the warehouse. In this case, selective racking is not the optimal choice for storing a very large quantity of products/goods and it has limits on the height of racking of not exceeding 12m.
2. Drive-in Racking
In the Drive-In racking system, the fork truck can drive into the racking system from one side and pick up/move the pallet from the same entry point. There are only one single entry and exit point. This system is suitable for the Last-In-First-Out(LIFO) operation model. The drive-in racking system is extremely space-saving as the pallets are stored densely and back-to-back without aisles, unlike the Selective Racking system. Drive-in racking allows us to use less energy and maximize the efficient use of space. It is very suitable for storing a large inventory of similar products or SKUs in limited spaces.
The disadvantage of drive-in racking is that the newest products will replace the older products and put them in the front of the racking. The pallet loaded first will be moved to the back as more pallets are loaded into the system. This design limits what kind of products can be stored in the rack and made it suitable for storing non-perishable products or products having a low turnover. The high frequency of forklift traffic in and out from a single side also can cause damages easily to the rack.
3. Push Back Pallet Racking
Push back pallet racking is also known as the back rack system. It is a high-density storage system which allows 6 pallet deep and pallets can be stored on both sides of the aisle. It is operated in the Last-In-First-Out (LIFO) model as the pallet is placed and removed from the same side of the racking system. When a new pallet is loaded and placed on the system, the old pallet is pushed backward on the rails. Once a pallet is unloaded or removed, the remaining/older pallets are automatically moved forward to the front of the system. Unlike the Drive-In racking system, the operator and forklift need not enter into the rack. The design of this system allows direct and continuous access to the products which increases the productivity of the picking process and reduces operational risk. Push back pallet is normally used in general warehousing or retail for non-perishable products.
4. Pallet Flow Racking
A pallet flow racking system, also known as gravity flow racking, is a dynamic storage system where the product is stored on a roller conveyor system. The pallet is placed on a higher side and then moved to another side at the lower end for picking or unloading, with the use of a gravity roller. It follows the inventory management of First-In-First-Out (FIFO) basics. The system will be designed in a declined slope with a braking system to control the speed of moving. Pallet flow racking is a high-density storage system that can have a very deep lane of up to 15 pallets or even deeper if warranted. It helps to increase the storage efficiency and double the storage capacity when compared to other racking systems. The automatic stock rotation and moving from loading point to picking point help to increase the efficiency and reduce the labor cost. This system is popular to be used for the product has expired date such as food and beverage, dairy, pharmaceuticals or other perishable products. However, the installation of pallet flow racking is more expensive than other systems such as drive-in racking systems. We also need to make sure the pallet is quality and ensure the loads convey properly.
5. Mobile Racking / Mobile Sliding Rack
Mobile racking is composed of multiple movable racking units which are guided on wheels and rails. The rails are installed on the floor and the system can be controlled manually or electronically. The racks are packed together without spacing. To access the pallet on a specific rack, the operators need to move the racks and create a space as an aisle at the right location for them to enter. Each block of the rack will have enough space to create one aisle for access. It is suitable for both First-In-First-Out (FIFO) and First-In-Last-Out (FILO) models. Mobile racking is ideal for storing low to medium rotation products and not suitable for the product which moves frequently. Some disadvantages of mobile racking systems are higher cost and reduced height. The initial cost of installing this system is higher than selective racking. And the height of mobile racking can only go up to 30 ft which is lower than other types of the storage system
When choosing the right racking system for your warehouse, it is important to consider several important factors such as the turnover rate, frequency of use, weight of the product, and the equipment you used to move the product. MecHero Malaysia supplies a wide range of durable racking systems for all types of warehouses and storage facilities. You can always contact us at +6011-7000 7687 or email us at email@example.com for an inquiry about the racking storage system. As a steel and hardware online supplier in Malaysia, we also supply a wide range of steel material, general hardware, or mechanical components. Tell us your requirements now and we can advise you accordingly.
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