5 Tips For Handling And Storing Bulk Materials

May 28, 2021

Bulk materials are usually dry goods stacked for long-term storage and inventory. Whether you’re a homeowner who has plenty of cumbersome household items to organize or a business owner who needs a storage solution for your products, there are plenty of storage options available to choose from. By choosing the right option, you’ll be able to handle your heavy-duty items more effectively and efficiently. But how should you go about the process?

This article will provide you some helpful tips for handling and storing bulk materials.

Large food warehouse with sugar sacks on steel shelves
  1. Be Sure To Use Wide Span Racks

Wide span racks are also referred to as wide span shelving and is a type of storage application with a beam design and upright frames. These racks can be used to store bulky materials. Some of the benefits of storing bulky materials in wide span racks are they:

  • Promote Easier Inventory: Wide span storage shelving makes counting small and bulk materials easier.
  • Are Ideal For Manual Picking Operations: Wide span shelves are a must-have in warehouses operating with manual pickers.
  • Are Versatile: Wide span racks come in stainless steel upright frames with various beam and deck material options. They work well as shop floor merchandising and backroom storage shelves. It’s a preferred racking solution for bulk storage, specifically non-palletized items.
  • Are Easy To Use: Wide span shelves are easy to erect and use, even with one-person assembly. The racks are adjustable so you can make adjustments for seamless use.
  • Are Affordable: Wide span racks won’t hurt your budget or wallet for your storage solutions of medium to heavy-duty goods.


2. Prioritize Safety

Handling bulk and heavy items have corresponding risks. So, it’s important to make safety the priority and inform your employees or family members at home how to safely handle bulky materials.

For one, children and pets shouldn’t be near storage items or bulk materials, such as thick blankets, because these items can be pulled, and the child or pet could be crushed or suffocated if the item falls. In warehouses, specialized tools and vehicles, such as forklifts, can be used in moving heavy loads for safety.

3. Use Forklifts

Regarding forklifts, they are powerful and can move heavy and bulky loads in a construction field or warehouse. Because they can safely lift objects, forklifts are an indispensable piece of equipment on any job site. Depending on the job needed, there are different models of forklifts:

  • Warehouse Forklift: This popular lift truck resembles a yellow golf cart equipped with twin forks extending from the front. This forklift is suitable for a facility with a high volume of items in inventory and can load and unload pallets. These forklifts can remove and transport goods from delivery vehicles.
  • Pallet Jacks: Also called pump trucks, pallet jacks are a type of forklift that cannot life bulk materials because of its small size. Due to the small footprint of pallet jacks, they can fit and lift loads into tight spaces and quarters.
  • Other Types: The other types of forklifts used in industrial and construction sites include walkie stackers, rough terrain forklifts, industrial forklifts, counterbalance forklifts, side loaders, and telehandlers.

The forklift you choose to use will depend on the type of load and application.

4. Considering Self-Storage Units

If you’re moving to a smaller living space or need extra bulk-item space for your business, you might want to consider renting a self-storage unit. Third-party providers offer self-storage facilities on a daily, weekly, or monthly basis.

Here are some tips when choosing a self-storage unit:

  • Check The Storage Provider’s Reputation: Protect your precious belongings by dealing with a legitimate and reliable storage company. Visit the website to learn more about services, profile, and credentials.
  • Request Insurance: A good self-storage provider gives their clients peace of mind and offers insurance.
  • Prioritize Your Convenience: Choose a self-storage facility near your home or business so you can easily reach and visit them.

5. Consider Bulk Material Conditions

When storing and handling bulk materials, factors such as size, content, and materials have to be considered. Environmental conditions like humidity and temperature levels also should be factored in to avoid damage to your goods.

Consider the following examples below when storing and handling bulk materials:

  • Is the bulk material flammable?
  • Do you need a short-term or long-term storage solution?
  • Do you have the right staffing to move or lift heavy goods?

Infographic created by WSI


Handling and storing bulk materials involves selecting the right storage solution, tools, and equipment, such as wide racks, forklifts, and self-storage units. Depending on the bulk material and application, size, design, and features of the storage solution should be considered. Handle bulk materials with care but also prioritize safety. In doing so, accidents can be prevented and bulk material storage and management goals for your home or business can be ensured.



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