Using a Drive-In Rack System
A drive-in rack system is ideal for warehouses where the pallet sizes are standardized, and large quantities of the same product SKUs are stored. When these two factors exist, you can create a very cost-effective high-density storage system. This type of rack system can be designed to fit into your existing warehouse space due to the flexibility of being able to store pallets two to ten pallets deep in each lane of drive-in rack. The pallets are accessed with a forklift entering and exiting one side of the racking system. Therefore, the back side of a drive-in rack is often placed against a wall.
How a Drive-In Rack System Can Benefit Your Operations
Using this type of rack system can provide your operations with a variety of benefits, including:
- Highest density of pallets stored in a given space for the lowest cost
- Allows you to reduce the amount of space needed for storage by more than 50%
- Reduces travel time for the forklift operator
- Can be further customized and combined with other types of rack systems
Safety and Design Tips
The safety of your personnel is your top priority. Drivers should be trained to not load broken or incorrectly sized pallets on the rack. To minimize damage to the racks, install guide rails on the floor in each lane of rack. These guide rails will reduce the likelihood of your racks becoming damaged. A relatively low-cost feature that will increase the speed the racks can be loaded are flared load rails. Using flared rails at the entrance to the lanes allow the pallets to be slipped into the racks more easily.
They also significantly reduce the amount of damage caused to the pallets as they are loaded into the racks. Another important item that is not to be overlooked is the physical dimensions of the forklift to be used in the system. The width of the truck, the width and height of the load back rest, and the maximum lift height of the forks must all be considered when designing a drive-in rack system. The height of the lowest obstruction hanging from the ceiling, whether it be the ceiling beams, piping, or light fixtures, needs to be taken into consideration, as well.
Proper Maintenance for a Safer Workplace
With forklifts and employees moving in the rack system, it is essential to take proper maintenance measures to ensure the structural integrity of the system. A thorough safety check should be regularly performed on your drive-in rack system to identify any missing anchors, bent components, missing bolts, or broken welds.
Having your rack professionally inspected by our team of experts will provide you with an accurate third-party evaluation of your racks. At Cranston Material Handling, we provide our clients with a comprehensive rack inspection, documenting any damage or improperly stored pallets, and offering recommendations for resolving the issues.
Contact Cranston Material Handling today to learn more about our drive-in rack systems and how we can help you get the most out of your storage space.