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No matter how neatly they’ve been put away or what they contain, pallets can go through a lot at the warehouse.

They’re always being moved, disassembled, reassembled, and it can all be hard to manage without knowing right where everything should go. A big part of this is warehouse layout – we frequently design our layouts for better storage, without factoring in the other work that needs to be completed in the warehouse along the way.

Take, for example, downstacking pallets. A tricky operation at best, and one that could disrupt the flow of the products through your warehouse – unless you’re prepared!


What is Pallet Downstacking?


“Downstacking”, in most cases, refers to disassembling an existing pallet to access the items within, without completely depalletizing it.

Let’s say you have a pallet containing a mixture of items, such as different types of perishable foods. Downstacking would refer to you disassembling the pallet to access the individual items within for storage elsewhere, such as shipping some of the food out, or moving some of it into a different pallet/freezer/etc to get ready for shipment or use elsewhere.


In a lot of cases, the pallets are replaced onto your warehouse pallet racking with a different load of goods than they have initially – but in other cases, the pallets are totally done away with as the items are removed.

This is all well and fine, but the question remains – how can you do this the most efficiently?


Pallet Downstacking Tips


Quickly downstacking a pallet requires a combination of the right setting, the right equipment, and the right training to get it all done.

For starters, there should be a specific area given over to downstacking your pallets. Create a ‘downstacking zone’ with things like industrial wire shelving and plastic warehouse storage bins to help organize the items that get removed from each pallet as the downstacking continues – this can help keep everything organized, labeled, and ready to move without any potential losses.


Even before they can be put away, though, removing the items from the pallet can be a big part of the challenge. Take everything 1-2 boxes at a time (depending on how the individual items are arranged), work to keep all the items divided and organized like needed, and make sure you have enough extra carts & pallets to put everything back when you’re done.

It’s lengthy work, but necessary – and with the right tools, you can downstack your pallets in a way that benefits everyone.

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