Creating a storage area with pallet racks is a delicate act with a balance between safety and efficiency. You need to maximize the space you use for storage while still giving room for workers and products. One problem many people face when making their storage area is improper racking spacing, which leads to racking damage and failure. That’s why knowing the recommended spacing requirements for pallet racks can be useful.
Spacing From the Wall
Storage racking can’t sit right against the wall, even if that would give it more support. As workers use the racking, whether loading or picking, the racking will shake, which can cause it to strike the wall. This will slowly damage the racking and can cause a lot of problems. That’s why the recommended distance for the wall is minimum of 3 inches local codes may require additional space.
Spacing From Other Pallet Racks
Just like with the wall, pallet racks can and will strike each other if they’re too close. However, this can be a disaster for warehouse storage solutions because the racks will strike each other and cause shaking. This can lead to product damage. That’s why the recommended spacing requirements for pallet racks from each other is at least 6 inches to maintain the proper flue space and depending on the size of rack and product possible 12” – 18”.
Spacing From the Ceiling
If you follow the other rules of spacing for pallet racking, then you should be safe from all the horizontal movement. But overhead clearance can still be a risk. If your pallet racking has no storage on top, you only need to set it 3 inches below the lowest beam or ceiling. However, if you do use the top for storage, you’ll need at least 3 inches from the product on top to the ceiling or beam.
Walkways and Vehicle Pathways
Racking spacing isn’t only about the space between racking, but also the space between each aisle. This can change if you use automated systems or vehicles, but walkways between pallet racking aisles are generally at least 2 feet wide and 80 inches tall. You’ll also need more room when the walkway leads to an exit, specifically 43 inches. Any main aisle or area with vehicle transport is highly dependent on the vehicles; there is no standard. You’ll need to consider the recommended vehicle you’re looking to use for the exact size of vehicle pathways.
These are the spacing recommendations for a storage racking area. Another benefit of this is the increase to employee safety and productivity with the extra room. Which is why these recommendations are well worth following.