Pallet Rack Sub-Categories
Within these two categories, there are different materials used to build pallets, and they vary greatly in terms of strength, durability, ease of use, and cost.
Soft Wood Pallets:
These are the cheapest pallet option. These pallets are typically used to ship items, and are often thrown away upon being received. Stringer pallets are usually soft wood pallets.
Also known as “eco-pallets”, paper pallets are increasing in their popularity due to their environmental benefits. They can easily be recycled, and can hold loads comparable to soft wood pallets. Companies touting environmentally-friendly operations may use paper pallets as part of their sustainability initiatives.
What plastic lack in affordability (they are vastly more expensive than wood), they make up for in strength, durability, and stacking ability.
Hard Wood Pallets:
These pallets are sturdier than their soft wood counterparts, and are put to long-term use by warehouse operators. Unlike stringer pallets, they can typically be lifted by four sides rather than two, and are more expensive.
Metal pallets are the strongest, most durable, and yes, most expensive pallets on the market. However, as they become more popular, their prices are steadily dropping, while their functionality is improving. When used for day-to-day operations within a company, their cost can actually be lower than wood pallets over the long term.