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Warehouse Shelving Systems

Sep 11, 2008
Most companies consider investing in warehouse shelving the day they realize they are running out of space and may be facing an imminent move. In most instances, such a move is not really necessary because plenty of "undiscovered" space still exists within the facility. Poorly organized supplies, materials, and products can quickly fill a room with clutter, causing you to assume that space is limited when it really is not. Both floor space and vertical cube space often go wasted, unnoticed as to the potential they represent.

Warehouse shelving will change this horizontal and vertical space accordingly into highly organized compartments of efficiency. Products and supplies can then be organized and stored by category, type, size, or material build, making it easier to maintain track of inventory in the process. Knowing the exact number of boxes, parts, components, products, and raw materials is the best way for your procurement department to avoid over purchasing. Keeping accurate inventory records will also help with tax valuation at the end of each quarter.

Certain sensitive materials like industrial chemicals also need their own special storage area for safety reasons. They need to be stored at certain temperatures in a well ventilated area to remain stable. Smaller warehouse shelves can be used to store these chemicals provided they are in sealed containers that will rest flat and balance on the shelf.

Warehouses that see a great deal of shipping and receiving activity receive the greatest benefit from shelving units. When trucks and forklifts are rapidly loading and unloading supplies, it is critical for employees to keep up with the pace. The organizational power offered by warehouse shelving can mean the difference between staying on schedule or falling behind and having to make up the difference during costly overtime.

The type of shelving used in a different warehousing environment depends to a great extent on the weight of the load it is supporting and the method of retrieval workers used to access materials on the shelf. Different sizes industrial shelving units are used in specific environments. The strength and design of the shelf will what can be stored on it.

Workers who require instant retrieval of small parts or boxes will have a much easier time working with open backed warehouse shelves because they can access these units from the back and the sides as well as the front. Smaller, open backed warehousing shelves are also used by office managers to store office supplies and documents.

Parts storage is commonly done by adding plates to the shelves of closed back units. This creates bins that small components can be stored in. 18 gauge and 20 gauge closed back warehouse shelves can also support up to 400-450 lbs in weight and are commonly used for storing boxes in stockrooms. They can also be connected together to create box shelving systems that can hold up to 2,000 pounds in weight.

When storing loads that total over 2,000 pounds in weight, Easy Rack recommends long span warehouse shelving. Long span systems, or wide span as they are also known, can convert entire walls into storage areas and can support loads of up to 35,000 pounds. Long span units are built with a unique two-piece steel beam support that increases the unit's center of gravity and more evenly distributes heavy loads over the surface of the shelves.
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