We talk a lot about what pallet racks can do to increase your warehouse efficiency, because we’ve been selling them and assembling them for years in Illinois and surrounding states. In fact, we have even come up with our own line of warehouse and distribution center equipment called K3 Werks, compatible with other teardrop racking that we offer while still saving you quite a bit of money. We knew what we wanted in racks because we deal with it every day.
But it’s not just standard pallet racks that we sell, because we also make carton flow racks under the K3 Werks name. If you’re new to the world of carton flow racks, no matter the manufacturer, that’s fine…we’re about to give you a crash course in the advantages of such a warehouse storage system and how it can deliver advantages over other types of racking systems.
The Purpose of Carton Flow Racks
First questions first…what are carton flow racks? While you might have already run into them somewhere today, such as the grocery store, you might not know what role they play in a warehouse.
Carton flow racks use gravity in order to move inventory. Racks are set up at a slight pitch that is angled down toward the aisle or packing station, and rollers sit underneath every box on the rack. As the frontmost box (or other item) is removed, gravity brings the boxes behind closer so that the next box is within reach the next time that particular SKU is needed. A lip at the edge of the rack prevents the advancing boxes from crashing to the floor.
What Are The Advantages?
Whether you are using carton flow boxes in the back of the warehouse or up front where the pickers and packers are grabbing inventory and putting it directly into boxes, there can be considerable advantages to using carton flow racks.
- Carton flow racks can be assembled in just about any size you need, from small to very large.
- This type of racking system is an excellent option for first-in first-out if you are loading them from the back. This means that that you’ll always be moving through old inventory instead of having it be pushed to the back every time new stock comes in.
- Carton flow racks, and their picking and packing station, can utilize the space under a mezzanine where forklifts aren’t allowed.
- Gravity is free! Instead of having a powered system move inventory forward, that new inventory will just slide into place without anyone even thinking about it.
- These racks can be attached to and incorporated into any other teardrop racking system. In the end, you can connect carton flow racks to other types of industrial shelving such as pallet racks, drive-in pallet racking, push-back racking, double-deep pallet racking, and even mezzanines.
- Carton flow racks help reduce the risk of an employee overreaching and pulling a muscle or, even worse, hurting their spine.
- These racks increase visibility of inventory, making sure that everything is front and center instead of being forgotten at the back of the rack.
- Loading these racks from the rear keeps your stockers and picker/packers separated, eliminating the chance that they’ll get in each other’s way.
- Carton flow racks can actually save you from having to hire another person. Instead of hiring someone to head back into the warehouse (which wastes time) every time a single box is needed, carton flow racks can already be stocked with dozens of boxes that will replace the first. When new inventory comes it, it might never even need to head to the pallet racks deeper in the warehouse. Instead, you can load up the carton flow racks directly and avoid that middle step. It’s simply a more efficient means of keeping inventory at the ready.
Are Carton Flow Racks Always the Answer?
We work with so many different industries as we’re selling and assembling industrial shelving, and we know that carton flow racks won’t work in absolutely every situation. Some warehouses are storing 100-pound feed bags, which are usually lifted by forklifts and not really “picked and packed.” Other warehouses specialize in large, heavy items (take industrial generators, for instance) that are taking up an entire pallet rack space and would not work on a carton flow rack.
Let Us Show You What They Can Do!
As we said, carton flow racks are incredibly versatile. You might not think that the particular inventory you send out the door makes them right for you… and you may be right. But we also bet that you’d be surprised at the types of items of every size that can make use of this unique form of industrial shelving. Click here to learn more about them, then contact DAK equipment to find out exactly how inexpensive this special type of rack system can be. We look forward to hearing from you!