20 Pallet Types For Shipping Products
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20 Pallet Types For Shipping Products
Pallets are made from 4 basic materials such as wood, plastic, metal, and corrugated or cardboard. We have created the top 20 types of pallets you will need to think about for your companies shipping and logistic needs. All of these pallets will have different pallet pricing. And once you are done with your pallets make money with pallet recycling.
Plastic pallets can be categorized into 8 types of pallets. Below is our breakdown of pallets. We hope this will help you with your shipping and logistics decisions.
1. Export Pallets
Businesses that ship internationally or across borders need to use export pallets. The easiest to identify export pallet is the plastic pallet. Export pallets are plastic and sturdy and good for one way shipping. Export pallets are weather resistant and will not get dry rot or mildew like wood pallets. Export pallets are also accessible with a forklift or pallet jack on all 4 sides. This is called a 4 way entry pallet.
Specifications for Export Pallets
Weight Capacity for export pallets typically range from 3,000 to 5,000 pounds when sitting on the floor. If moving the pallet around weight capacity is around 1,200 to 2,000. The size of an export pallet can vary from the standard 48 inches by 40 inches pallet. Some other common export pallet sizes are 24 inches by 32 inches, or 24x32, 43 inches by 43 inches, or 43x43, 45 inches by 45 inches, or 45x45, 48 inches by 32 inches, or 48x32, 48 inches by 45 inches, or 48x45.
2. Nestable Plastic Pallets
Nestable plastic pallets stack or sit on top of each other and take up less space. These pallets have four way (4 way) forklift access because they have 9 legs for support. Nestable pallets are popular to use in the food industry, restaurant business and other industries where they need a clean lightweight pallet. The benefits of a nestable pallet is they take up less space due to stacking. Other benefits are that they are very durable and safe.
Specifications for Nestable Plastic Pallets
Weight Capacity for export pallets typically range from 3,500 to 6,500 pounds when sitting on the floor. If moving the pallet around weight capacity is around 1,200 to 2,500. Nestable pallets typically only come in 2 sizes 48 inches by 40 inches, or 48x40 and 48 inches by 42 inches, or 48x42.
3. Industrial Strength Plastic Pallets
Industrial plastic pallets are good for exactly what they sound like they would be good for…heavy duty jobs. Industrial plastic pallets are also nestable but since they are industrial strength they are safer and allow you to stack pallets at higher safely. These pallets are made from injection molded plastic. This type of pallet is reusable.
Specifications for Industrial Strength Plastic Pallets
Industrial Strength Plastic Pallet come in one size 48 inches by 40 inches, or 48x40. The weight capacity is rather high at 10,000 pounds when sitting on the floor. If moving the pallet around weight capacity is around 2,300 pounds. Benefits of a industrial pallet is that they are weather proof and heat resistant and are suitable for international shipments where wood pallets would require heat treatment or fumigation.
4. Heavy Duty Pallets
Heavy Duty Pallets are actually also nestable but they are made of structural foam. The pallet structure is made so that any liquids or waters will drian right through the pallet to keep the unit load dry. These pallets come in one size 48 inches by 40 inches, or 48x40. The weight capacity is rather high at 30,000 pounds when sitting on the floor. If moving the pallet around weight capacity is around 4,000 pounds.
There are 2 types of rackable pallets to choose from if you have pallet racks in your warehouse.
5. Solid Top Rackable Pallets
These pallets look just like they sound. They have a solid plastic top and are the standard 48x40 size to fit in standard pallet racks in most warehouses. These plastic pallets are made from injection molding and are very durable. Another pallet feature is they are four way entry due to the design. The sold tops are good to help prevent damage to goods that are being shipped or stored on the pallet. Many beverage companies use these pallets to store beer, soda, or other cases of drinks. These pallet keep clean very well. Solid top rackable pallets come in one size, 48 inches by 40 inches, or 48x40. The weight capacity is rather high at 14,000 to 30,000 pounds when sitting on the floor. If moving the pallet around weight capacity is around 4,000 to 5,000 pounds.
6. Rackable Pallets
Rackable pallets are the standard sized 48x40 GMA pallet and sized to fit in standard pallet racks in most warehouses. Companies that are compliant to USDA and FDA regulations use these pallets. These pallets are very clean, durable and come in several colors like blue, black, red, and green. Advantages to these pallets are they do not have nails, splinters or boards that could break. This is also a benefit when your facility is looking to keep compliant to safety regulations.
7. Stackable Pallets
Stackable pallets are great for double stacking pallets in a truck for shipping. These pallets are exempt from ISPM 15 (exporting regulations) because they are not wood. Stackable pallets are 4 way entry so you can enter the pallet with a forklift from all sides. These pallets are great for protecting goods during transport.
8. Plastic Drum Pallets
Plastic drum pallets are designed to store 55 gallon plastic drums. Four 55 gallon drums can sit on these pallets perfectly. The size is 48x48 and they can hold a capacity of up to 30,000 pounds. What makes these pallets unique is that they are made with thermoformed plastic.
There are an estimated 2 billion wood pallets in circulation in the US every day. One could argue that this is the most important commodity in the supply chain. More than 80 percent of all goods are shipped on a wood pallet and account for 46 percent of the total US hardwood lumber production. However, some may see pallets as being boring but we see it as an industry that needs technology to help locate and distribute pallets throughout the US and world economy. A pallet is so important that there are calculators that can determine the exact amount of goods that can be packaged and boxed on a pallet. When you talk about million of shipments daily even the slightest unit load improvement can save a fortune. Here is a list of the wood pallets you should think about and discuss using in your business.
Industries that Use Wood Pallets
The most common industries that use wood pallets are: grocery, telecom, paint, drums, military, cement, chemical, beverage, dairy, automotive, paper, and retail.
9. Recycled Wood Pallets
The recycled wood pallet is the most common pallet in the industry. More than 2 billion of these pallets are estimated to be moving around in the economy daily. Wood is a good pallet to use because it is tough and durable and repairable. Recycled wood pallets are typically 48x40 which is the standard GMA pallet. Recycled pallets come in grades. A grade pallets are bright wood with little or no damage. B grade pallets wood is not as bright and may be discolored and not many repairs on the pallet such as extra support boards on cracked boards.
10. New Wood Pallets
New wood pallets can come in many sizes and shapes and can be custom made. New wood pallets are exactly what they sound like; they are made from new lumber. New wood pallets can be heat treated and stamped for export overseas. There are typically two types of pallet wood to choose from; hardwood and softwood. Hardwoods are typically wood like oak and softwood is typically wood like pine. Other pallet wood types are Birch, Oak, Maple, or Walnut.
11. Pressed Wood Pallets
Pressed wood pallets are preferred in some industries that need a lightweight pallet. Pressed wood pallets are nestable and can be exported because they are ISPM exempt. Another benefit is that there are no nails in this pallet so you don’t have to worry about your goods being damaged on this pallet.
12. Wood Drum Pallets
Wood drum pallets are very sturdy and are designed to hold 4 55 gallon drums. What makes these pallets unique is they have 4 stingers that give added strength. There are 2 stringers on the sides and 2 spaced out in the middle of the pallet.
13. Block Pallet
A wood block pallet is a discussion all by itself but we will try to discuss the benefits here to give you a good idea if this pallet will work for your business. Most wholesale clubs require a block pallet. The most common type is a blue CHEP pallet. Block pallets are preferred because they are exceptionally strong and durable. They are made with 5 inch blocks and boards that give it a weight capacity of 5,500 pounds.
Pallets Made From Other Materials
14. Metal Pallets
Metal pallets are great for warehouse storage over long periods of time. The most common metal pallets are aluminum pallets and metal pallets. They are popular for storing food in freezers, storing chemicals and also gaining popularity in the automotive industry to store tires.
15. Spill Containment Pallets
Spill containment pallets have a catch tray underneath. This pallet traps leaks to prevent spills. These pallets are typically made from polyethylene, which makes the pallet chemical and corrosion-resistant. These pallets can help you if you are following EPA 40 CFR 264 regulations.
16. Corrugated Pallets or Cardboard Pallets
There are many ways to make a corrugated pallet. Basically a corrugated pallet is a pallet made of cardboard.
17. EUR Pallet or EPAL Pallet the European Pallet
The most widely used commodity in the global shipping industry is the pallet. In Europe, they have a standard pallet size like the US standard GMA 48x40 pallet. The European pallet is commonly referred to as a EUR Pallet or EPAL Pallet. EPAL stands for European Pallet Association.
The standard European pallet size is called a EUR 1 and the size is 800 mm x 1,200 mm or 31.5 inches by 47.24 inches. These pallets are block pallets and have 4 way entry with a forklift. Some specifications of the EUR pallet or EPAL pallet are that there must be 78 nails of a specific type and in specific nailing spots to make the pallet strong. EUR pallets and EPAL pallets must also be made of dry wood to prevent molding and mildew.
A defining feature of the EUR pallet is the EPAL stamp on the left corner leg. This allows easy identification. On the right leg is the EUR stamp. The EUR pallet also has stamps to identify what type of wood it is made out of, which produced the pallets and the year it was made.
EUR pallet sizes
EUR pallet sizes are as follows: EUR 1 pallet measures 800 mm x 1,200 mm or 31.50 inches x 47.24 inches EUR 2 pallet measures 1,200 mm x 1,000 mm or 47.24 inches x 39.37 inches EUR 3 pallet measures 1,000 mm x 1,200 mm or 39.37 inches x 47.24 inches EUR 6 pallet measures 800 mm x 600 mm or 31.50 inches x 23.62 inches
18. Half Pallet
Half pallets are relatively new compared to the standard sized pallet. Businesses have become more efficient in shipping and determined that using a half pallet can save them money. Half pallets take up less space in trucks, which make shipping cheaper. Half pallets are also good for stores that have small store fronts or areas to store goods.
Half pallets are gaining popularity in the grocery industry. Half pallets can be constructed like a block pallet where the blocks hold the pallet together or they can be made like a stringer pallet that have boards running down the side. There are also some half pallets that use metal instead of blocks to hold the pallet together.
19. Display Pallets
Display pallet are used as a creative way to showcase goods in store. The merchandise is located on the pallet and is placed at a storefront. Display pallets can help sell more products because the display gets more exposure to customers. Also display pallets are beneficial because the goods are organized so that they are ready for sell when the pallet arrives at a retail location.
Display pallets can be various sizes. We have seen display pallets in standard 48x40 size, half pallets and custom sizes. Most all display pallets are made of wood. Display pallets are typically decorated with branding and advertisements to catch the buyers attention.
20. Custom Pallets
The design and development of a custom pallet is important to shipping large or oversized products. Custom pallets are needed when products are large, heavy, or promotional in nature. Sometimes testing a custom pallet is necessary to ensure that pallet will work. They only drawback to custom pallets are they are difficult to find another customer to reuse them. The only other option is to tear down the custom pallet and use the lumber to make pallets of different sizes.