How much air are you storing in your warehouse? It’s a common challenge. Many warehouse owners don’t efficiently use the space above their standard storage racks. More floor space is consumed to store additional stock when this vertical space goes unused. Or, warehouses are over utilized. Writing for the Multi Channel Merchant website, Brian Barry observes, “We find when that between 80% and 85% of space utilization, efficiency typically drops from a movement and storage perspective. Pallet movement becomes very restricted and each move and replenishment may take multiple actions to complete.”
Your choice is to increase the size of your existing warehousing, or to use the space you have more efficiently. It’s often more cost-effective to find ways to utilize existing space. Take it to the ceiling with vertical storage.
Mezzanine: If you have the height, consider adding a mezzanine to your existing warehouse space. This “space between stories” is a way to utilize unused vertical areas and an effective solution to adding space to an existing warehouse.
Mezzanine floors can be easily designed to fit in your current warehouse. They also don’t have to be used for storage. Many warehouse mezzanine floors, for example, are instead used for office space, or even an employee kitchen area.
A mezzanine area can add up to 50 percent more floor space without much of an interruption to your existing operations. Usually the most important considerations are your ability to access it and its capacity to support what you will store there. It’s always a wise idea to check your local building codes before exploring this option.
Efficient use of vertical space: The second option is to take advantage of rack-supported work or storage platforms that use this upper space. Pallet rack storage platforms increase your storage efficiency and maximize usable warehouse racking space.
Going up (if you have the space) can reward you with more free floor space. Some solutions can even allow you to use the space over your dock area. Think about all that unused area above your loading doors.
A top benefit to this solution is that a rack-supported platform is not a structural building change, so you can sidestep pulling permits, as well as making potential structural changes. The most common and popular storage solutions are modular, which means they can be set up to take advantage of the existing footprint you have in the warehouse.
It’s All About Unrestricted Height
Warehouses often may have unusable vertical space – as well as a portion of unusable floor space – because of the structures needed for the building’s roof support. Our clear span truss design does away with flat ceilings and low-hanging rafters. You can take storage all the way to the top. Download a PDF of our brochure to learn more.