Tips to Leveraging Your Pallet Racking Systems: Part I

By: Larry Rausch – Vice President of Sales and Marketing

In this three part series, “Tips to leveraging your pallet racking systems”, we will be providing numerous tips on warehouse management best practices.  At CBF industries, we have been providing the highest quality pallet racking systems and installation for over 30 years. The pallet rack itself is only one aspect of warehouse management best practices.  It’s how you use and manage these systems that’s the key.  So let’s dive right in.

Reconfiguring Is Okay

The pallet rack solution that worked for your warehouse 5 years ago might be inefficient now because your enterprise has grown, or you realize that you aren’t using your mega-sized layout to its full capacity and it’s time to downsize. Either way, it’s smart to implement a continuous improvement process to analyze how your system is working and determine ways to make it better. For instance, you might have started out a few years ago with a simple pallet-in, pallet-out approach in your retail space. Ten years later, you realize it’s smarter to adopt a pick-and-pack operation to keep pace with e-commerce demands and organize a wider variety of SKUs. Watch and discuss market trends with your warehouse team so you’re prepared to ride any wave that comes your way. Whether you install a new racking system or reconfigure an existing one, add extra capacity into it to accommodate future growth.

Keep Expectations and Specifications Realistic

Especially if you’re buying used pallet rack, it’s common to purchase over-specified racking that’s capable of holding far more weight than you’ll ever need. Figure out what you’ll really require, and look for racks that fit within that range. The key metric to keep in mind is Universally Distributed Load (UDL), or Safe Working Load (SFL). This defines the weight that a pair of beams can support. In general, beam costs and capacities scale together. At the same time, be careful not to under-specify your load requirements. Doing so can render them incapable of keeping up with demand, leading to a weakened infrastructure or collapse.

Move Your Lowest Beam Up

When workers go to lift goods out of racking from the floor level, they have to raise the pallet load up and over the lift truck’s reach leg, being careful not to hit the beam above. To make this process easier, add a little extra distance between the ground and the first beam. Ideally, aim for around 300 mm more than the space between the other beams in the bay, if possible.

Professional Pallet Rack Advice You Can Trust

Optimizing your pallet rack layout for maximum storage capacity doesn’t have to become an operational challenge. With the right tools and resources, you can invest in a solution that maximizes your investment, turning your warehouse into an efficient material handling space. Need someone to help you design, build, improve or repair your pallet rack system? That’s where we come in. We’re industry experts committed to helping warehouse and distribution center professionals understand the best practices to use. Contact us today for the trusted advice you need.


Utilizes a Last-In/First-Out (LIFO) racking type system is great for a high volume of product and limited number of pallets per SKUs. Knowing the pallet type is important if using this type of  racking to ensure a correct installation.

Get your team to assist you in selecting the right pallet rack for your operation and design the best layout. This ensures you improve your storage capacity and overall productivity. Once the design is agreed upon, carefully monitor the project implementation to ensure a smooth installation.


In part one we covered some simple steps that can be taken to ensure maximum utilization of your racking systems. From reconfiguring to the benefits of LIFO racking system strategies.

We hope this post provided you helpful information as it relates to leveraging your pallet racking operation. To speak with one of our technical experts, please call 1-216-229-9300. And thank you for reading our post.


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