June 21, 2023
Buyer Beware: The Safety Dangers of Used Pallet Racking

Safety is a top priority for warehouses to protect worker health and product integrity, thereby creating a more efficient environment within their operation. Robustly designed, durable rack systems are critical safety components in for any Industry’s storage application. Establishing a secure and lasting Storage Solution within your operations starts by working with an accredited, experienced pallet rack manufacturer. One of the common pitfalls that puts operations at risk is to go against this and purchase a used racking system via the secondary market. The dangers of used racking are numerous and substantial, however, can be avoided through proactive education.

The Safety Dangers of Used Pallet Racking

The most dangerous factor in dealing with used pallet rack is that all prior damage to the system from material handling equipment is inherited by the buyer. To the untrained eye, much of the damage may appear less consequential than it actually is or may not be obvious altogether. Frazier Senior Technical Engineer, Tom Ryder, breaks it down into more relatable terms, “Buying used racking is like buying a used car; you don’t know where it has been and what issues have occurred with it.” With system damage from material handling equipment ranking as the leading cause of rack system failure or collapse, this is simply a risk you should not take.

A rack system collapse.

Existing damage on used pallet rack (which is inherited by the buyer) can result in system failure and collapse.

Another major deterrent towards used rack is the lack of verification surround the system. Are the design parameters that have been communicated to you on the system correct? Do not be to hasty to take the seller’s word for it. Ryder urges racking buyers to, “Keep in mind, used rack is not necessarily only sold once. It could have been sold 3, 4 or more times over. This makes it extremely challenging to be certain of any system parameters.” A major flaw that can occur with an unverified used rack system is mixing components from different rack manufacturers. According to the Rack Manufacturer’s Institute (RMI), “Most rack manufacturers produce unique and proprietary components. In particular, column shapes and hole punching patterns along with the mating beam end connectors are designed to interface specifically with each other. While some different manufacturer’s products may seem somewhat compatible, they are not interchangeable. Mixing of products from various manufacturers may cause fit and/or function issues”.

Lastly, do not overlook seismic hazards. Different seismic zones, especially those with higher activity like the West Coast, require specific design criteria to meet code. Ryder explains, “Again, you do not know for certain where used rack came from. Unbeknownst to the you, the used system you are buying could get relocated from a low seismic activity zone like Texas to a high seismic activity zone like California. In this example, the rack be exceedingly under designed for the high seismic zone and would be a major safety liability to your operations”. In seismic instances, there can also be many certifications that the used racking does not necessarily adhere to across different categories including, but not limited to, welding, quality control and building code.

Assurances of a New Frazier Storage Solution

Every danger presented by a used racking system can be avoided upfront by choosing a new storage solution from Frazier. Beyond their durable, Structural Steel composition, new racking solutions manufactured by Frazier boast verified safety checks:

A Pallet Flow rack system.

Frazier designs all new racking systems with safety, durability and longevity in mind.

Don’t wait for issues to happen with a used racking system – which, according to Ryder, “Can occur as soon as it is put in use, or even in the installation phase” – before you turn to a new, structural racking solution.

Contact Frazier Today to learn more about how we can tailor an affordable, long-term rack solution to your exact warehouse needs for the present and future.

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