Case study

Why wide aisle pallet racking is the number one choice for many warehouse operations

Feb 25, 2021 | Pallet Racking

It’s well known that pallet racking systems are available in a variety of formats, however it’s the wide aisle pallet racking system, otherwise known as standard adjustable pallet racking (APR) which is the most commonly used. This is a system that has been occupying warehouse environments since the pallet racking era began during World War II and it certainly hasn’t lost its appeal, despite industry evolvement which has made way for some very sophisticated racking systems. So why is wide aisle racking in particular still very much the warehouse favourite across the globe?

Wide Aisle Pallet Racking


Wide aisle pallet racking is reliable robust solution

Because wide aisle racking has been around so long its reputation for stability has been built upon and when looking to invest in a new pallet racking system, this is high on the agenda for just about any warehouse. The durable structure is made up of steel beams and uprights and fixings that can be galvanised or painted with optional decking features and can support weight of up to 5000kg per level.

robust wide aisle racking structure with timber decking


Its an uncomplicated system

Wide aisle racking is the simplest form of pallet racking there is. It’s configured in rows with the integration of multi levelled racks which can be as high as the building allows. Between the rows is aisle space of a generous width to allow the safe movement of handling equipment. There are no complex features on this system which utilises warehouse space and keeps inventory organised with a straightforward picking and retrieval process.

Wide aisle racking structural beams


Installation is quick and easy

The minimal number of component parts for wide aisle racking and how each part is purposely made to fit and interlock, simplifies the installation process. The frame is constructed initially which is made up of floor plates, uprights and bracings and is then stabilised with the fixings which secure the structure to the floor. The beams are fitted next to create the required number of levels of a specified size and then decking can be installed if required. As the system is easy to build, the time it takes to complete isn’t long at all, even when installing a larger sized system.  At WSL our friendly installation team are extremely professional and highly experienced. They will install your wide aisle racking system with care and attention, within the agreed timeframe and on completion your warehouse will be left tidy.

Wide aisle pallet racking being installed


Accommodates changing needs

Because inventory storage requirements can change, wide aisle pallet racking is designed to support those changes making warehouse reconfiguration projects much easier. The system can be adjusted easily by unlocking the beams to adjust their height level, whilst bays can be added or taken out. Although adjustments are easy to carry out, our installation team is always on hand and would be than happy to adjust your racking beams should you require our assistance.


An extremely Versatile solution

Wide aisle pallet racking is seen in warehouses in all types of industries because it can support any type of palletised product and can be used in temperature controlled zones. An additional benefit of this system is that it can store multiple product types at the same time, so if a warehouse stores different product lines, wide aisle racking is an ideal solution.

The most affordable pallet racking solution

The simplicity of the wide aisle racking system is reflected in the cost which is certainly a huge advantage when looking for a sustainable, cost-effective solution. The cost per pallet racking location can be from as little as £37 however to obtain a precise price for your wide aisle pallet racking system, WSL offer a free site survey carried out by one of our expert Design Technicians which includes a non-obligatory quotation and a plan of your new system.

Provides direct access and high visibility

The ability to directly load and retrieve pallets is a valuable time saver and wide aisle pallet racking provides just that. Fork lift trucks can navigate directly to a pallet which is in full view from the access aisle and pick it directly from the rack. High visibility also improves the efficiency of stock control because stock quantity is easy to assess when viewed from the aisle.

There’s the option for a double deep configuration

Although wide aisle pallet racking provides excellent space utilisation, for those looking to further increase storage capacity there’s the option to install a double deep pallet racking configuration. This is where the rows are placed two deep, back to back rather than an aisle between each row. The back to back configuration has fewer aisles making way for more pallet racking and although pallets can only be accessed from one side rather than two, access is still easy and visibility is still high.

Double deep configuration


Highly Compatible

Wide aisle pallet racking can be used in conjunction with other storage systems within the warehouse. This includes the integration of shelving or vertical racks for example. At WSL our Design Technicians will draw on their wealth of experience to design a bespoke solution with subsidiary features that will support your operation, however complex your needs may be. Another great advantage is the compatibility to any standard fork lift truck which means there’s no need to invest in any specialist handling equipment.

Safe and secure

Not only is the structure itself robust and safe allowing the storage of heavy loads, the width of the aisle between the rows provide adequate space in which the fork lift truck can manoeuvre safely. Pallet racking accessories such as protectors can be fitted at the bottom of the uprights to take the impact from any accidental knocks from the fork lift truck. The end frames can be protected with the installation of end of aisle barriers which again will prevent the structure itself from any collisions. Protecting your pallet racking system is essential to keeping your warehouse and employees safe and although the structure itself is designed for durability, added protection will provide extra assurance and help resist weakening from repeat knocks and bumps. Manufactured in our factory, WSL can provide bespoke protection guards and barriers so they perfectly fit your system and suit your operation with a range of colours and styles to choose from.

End of aisle protection barrier


Warehouse danger zones can be secured using wired mesh and this can be fitted around the rear of the pallet racking system to prevent loose items falling and causing injury or damage

Weight load notices and safety labels are also a key player in warehouse safety. Fitted to the pallet racking system, these indicate safe use and maximum weight load bearing and can be referred to any time with easy to understand wording and graphics.

Weight load notice fixed to racking


To ensure safety throughout the life cycle of any pallet racking system, WSL offer annual rack inspections organised by our rack inspection coordinator Jo who can be contacted on 0113 2045350. The purpose of a yearly rack inspection is to prevent unnoticed damage or a weakening from worsening which can pose a real danger to anyone working near the racks. The rack inspection entails a thorough assessment of the entire structure and on completion any issues will be noted in the rack inspection report which is issued to you within a few days. Any immediate dangers will be brought to your attention instantly with advice on action to be taken.


So is wide aisle pallet racking right for your operation?

Now you know the reasons behind why wide aisle pallet racking is so commonly used and its benefits, how can you decide whether it’s the right system for your particular facility?

To find out if this could be your ideal solution, WSL has a team of expert Design Technicians who are on hand to help. Our design team cover the whole of the UK and can visit your site free of charge so you can discuss your needs in detail. From here we can design a solution unique to your operational needs and create a computer assisted layout plan to allow you to visualise how a wide aisle pallet racking system could be configured in your warehouse. The expertise of our designer combined with the layout plan will help you decide whether wide aisle racking is the right solution for your operation. Wide aisle racking is one of many pallet racking solutions available, all of which our designers have extensive knowledge, so should wide aisle racking not be the right system for you, WSL can help you find the right pallet racking solution and ensure your exact needs are met.

To help you compare wide aisle pallet racking with other pallet racking types we used the extensive knowledge and expertise of our design technicians to create a detailed and useful pallet racking guide and this highlights the varied capabilities of different pallet racking solutions.

WSL has been providing industrial storage solutions for over thirty years and is a Full Member of SEMA (Storage Equipment Manufacturers Association) which reflects our commitment to providing high quality solutions with prioritised safety. Call our team today on 0113 2045350 or email us at to discus your storage system needs.

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