Pallet Info: How To Tell If A Pallet Is Safe To Reuse
Pallet projects are gaining in popularity as the DIY movement gains traction. Pallets constitute inexpensive, sometimes even free, lumber that, with some ingenuity, can be transformed into a table, shelves, bookcase or anything else you can think of. If you are looking for ways to reuse pallet you might want to check out 20 DIY Pallet Projects for Your Homestead. There’s just one catch:
How can you be sure that the pallets you find are safe to use for whatever your project is? Where did the pallet come from and what was it used for before you found it?
The fact is, many shipping pallets are treated with chemicals or have been exposed to toxic compounds that would make them unfit to use near food or even around young children or pets. How can you be sure that the wooden shipping pallets you use are safe when even new pallets might be chemically treated?
You can’t always tell just from looking whether a pallet has been:
- Fumigated to prevent infestation with toxic insecticides
- Exposed to toxic bacteria from animals or food
- Chemically treated
- Exposed to drug spills or residue
While a pallet found on the side of the road will never divulge all of its secrets just from close scrutiny, there are certain things that you can figure out if you know what to look for. Below, we’ve compiled some tips to help you navigate the ins and outs of shipping pallet designations so that you can proceed with building and DIY crafts without fear or uncertainty.
Whether you found your shipping pallet at a business or warehouse or on the side of the road, here’s what you need to check for:
- How clean is it?
Do not use a pallet with stains or spills on it. Even if you think that you can accurately identify the spilled substance, it is safer to use only clean pallets.
- Is it a colored pallet?
Colored pallets are often used to ship items within the pool industry. It is likely that they have been exposed to chemicals. Their use is therefore not recommended.
- Does it have an identifying stamp?
Most pallets are stamped somewhere. Flip the pallet over and don’t forget to check the sides. You’ll almost certainly find some kind of identifying stamp or marking. The stamp should include an IPPC logo and a code indicating the method of treatment.
Continue reading on page 2 and see if your pallets are safe to reuse.