A pallet is a horizontal transport platform. It is usually affixed to a more prominent structure that can be lifted by material handling equipment such as forklifts, lift trucks and conveyors. In addition to providing the base for transport, the pallet also protects the items it carries.

Materials used in making pallets

Most pallets are made out of wood, and so wood pallets are the most common types of pallets to be found in the market. However other materials can also be used to make pallets. Materials such as plastic, paper, and metal have been used in pallet making. Wood pallets are more common however because the weight, stillness, cost, and recyclability combine to make it appear to be a better option. Plastic pallets are the second most common types of pallets. They are also attractive because they are inexpensive, lighter and are known to, have a longer lifespan than wood pallets.

Pallet durability

Pallet durability is determined by how the pallet is used. A pallet usually has a maximum weight it can carry which is determined by its size thus overloading of a pallet can cause it to lose its viability. Also, the nature of the goods and the distance the pallet travels is also a factor that determines how durable it will be. The lifecycle of a wooden pallet has been estimated to be about three years, of course, depending on its use as earlier stated.

Finding a New Life For a Pallet

Adequate care and maintenance have to be applied to it to ensure that a pallet is used to its full potential. When a pallet has been adequately maintained, it can be reused for other purposes. However, before being reused, the user should try to determine if the pallet is safe for reuse by checking for the following;
  • Bugs in the wood – this is possible after pallets have been used for transportation. It can be rectified with heat treatment.
  • Mould – Splinters on the pallet is evidence of mould and when there is mould it is an indication that the wood is rotten and unsafe for reuse.
  • Wet Pallet – A damp pallet is an indication of mould and unavoidable rot.
  • Stamp – A stamped pallet confirm that heat treatment has been done on the wood and it is safe for reuse.
When it is certain that your pallet is safe for reuse, it can be used for different new purposes such as;
  • Indoor Furniture – For this, it is advisable to stay away from the painted ones as they contain arsenic that is a carcinogen. Pallets that were used to move dry items are the best options for indoor furniture.
  • A deck for your house – Pallets can also be used to build a deck. The most difficult part of this would be nailing.
  • A lounge corner outdoors – Pallets can be repurposed into a lounge corner in your garden or by your pool by placing mattresses or a cushion on them.
  • Stairs – Old Pallets can be used to build stairs for short heights.