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Second-hand Racking and Shelving VS New


Crown Warehouse Solutions’ new racking and shelving products offer a combination of quality and value that can’t be rivalled by second-hand systems.

While the initial low price of second-hand systems can be tempting, the hidden costs of buying used – such as replacing missing or damaged parts – can quickly erode any potential savings.

Additionally, second-hand systems have the potential to expose owners to Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) compliance issues while potentially providing less-efficient storage and requiring earlier replacement.

The expense of these issues can quickly exceed the cost of buying new, given that installation costs form a percentage of the total cost of racking.



Employers are responsible for ensuring the safety of their employees. So when purchasing any capital equipment, it is an employer’s duty of care to ensure it is fit for purpose.

In the event of misadventure, purchasing and installing second-hand racking that doesn’t meet the Australian standards or the original manufacturer’s specifications may be considered a breach of that duty of care.


Function and support

A new storage solution from Crown Warehouse Solutions offers additional benefits over a used system such as a full warranty, peace of mind that the components haven’t been damaged or worn and professional design and installation which helps get the most out of the space available.

It is also important to remember that a new system will most likely outlive a previously used system, offering better value-for-money over the lifetime of the equipment. Used racking can incur more installation costs, and may need to be inspected and replaced more frequently.

Buying a new system from Crown means that if racking needs to be extended or reconfigured in the future, parts will be available and professional help will be on hand when required.

Buying a used system from a second-hand dealer means the availability of additional parts is an unknown factor which can mean earlier-than-anticipated replacement in the face of business growth.


Ask the question

Real-world value comes from finding the best pallet racking for your purposes. While price is always a concern, remember that safety, functionality, upgradability and serviceability are also issues that need to be considered before making a purchase.

Second-hand racking and shelving generates a number of questions – here are some honest answers.


Second-hand product is usually stored outside. What does that mean?

  • Paint on racking and shelving is not UV stabilised, so it can fade and break down.
  • Even though it’s painted, being exposed to the elements means any scratches can result in rust. The insides of beams aren’t painted so if water or moisture gets inside they rust from the inside out.
  • During assembly and dismantling, the beam-end connectors often scratch the upright slots so both the uprights and BECs rust where they are scratched.
  • Pre-galvanised uprights don’t always have a draw-through on the punching, so the connector slots often rust when exposed to the elements.
  • It’s not unheard of for second-hand material to be repainted, disguising defects and damage.


Is the history of the material known?

  • The material may have been used at 100 per cent or more of the manufacturers’ intended capacity.
  • If a beam has been overloaded, it is likely to be fatigued or deformed. As fatigue sets in, bending resistance is reduced considerably. Think about a paper clip; bend it up and down enough times and it will break. Beams are no different when operators deposit and retrieve pallets, particularly when overloaded. Failure often occurs at the connection of the beam to the beam end connector and that failure is heightened by fatigue.
  • The beam may have been exposed to the elements, allowing it to rust from the inside out.
  • Beams are designed and used to stiffen the structure. If they are fatigued or out of specification, the system won’t work as intended. Conversely, if the uprights or posts are out of specification or fatigued, there is a real opportunity for failure.
  • Occasionally, second-hand product is substituted by non-original or incompatible imports.
  • Interchangeability doesn’t mean compatibility. The product may fit but it’s often incompatible.


Is the supplier able to support the product or sale?

  • Customers should know if their supplier is going to be able to support the material post-sale and be in a position to actually finish the job.
  • There are a number of products in the marketplace where the OEM is no longer around or the product is no longer serviced by the OEM.
  • Critical components and spare parts which don’t meet the OEM specifications are often sourced from jobbing shops, similar brands or low-cost manufacturers.
  • The grade and design of older material is often difficult or impossible to obtain. While load charts and tables may be available, the standards may have changed, rendering those tables useless.


What is the importance of resale, residual value and warranty?

  • You can often depreciate new product at a higher rate than second-hand – seek independent advice.
  • New product from Crown is covered by a warranty which extends to lifetime if maintained by Crown annually.
  • Second-hand dealers may not warrant their product – it’s important to check prior to purchasing. Will they be around to honour the warranty or even source the required material from the OEM?


Is it compliant to the new Australian Standard AS4084 / 2012?

  • Using two fixings, increasing the flue space and positioning corner guards doesn’t necessarily bring old racking to the new standard. Material grade of both beam and post, beam end connectivity, down-aisle stability, base plate connectivity, bracing modules and frame lengths all form part of the new standard.
  • Material manufactured prior to 2012 needs to be tested to destruction to demonstrate suitability to standards and OEM specifications.


What about pricing?

  • Second-hand product isn’t regulated; the second-hand suppliers sell it for whatever they can get – often it’s more expensive than new.
  • The installation on second-hand is cheaper than new because the frames have already been assembled. However, the customer is often forced into using what is available, not what is suitable or compliant.


Final thoughts

Very few second-hand dealers have an infrastructure that allows for design. They sell whatever is available to them so there’s no brand loyalty or commitment to a particular product.


For more information on how Crown can help you invest in the right racking and shelving for your operation, please visit http://crownforklifts.com.au/warehouse-solutions/



Media Contacts

Nigel Tunnell-Jones
Crown Equipment PTY LTD

Crown Lift Trucks | Second-hand Racking & Shelving Vs. New - Crown Australia Southeast Asia Newsroom

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