top of page

How To Choose The Right Rack Shelves

Ensuring that the hardware in your data center is configured properly can drastically improve temperature management and accessibility. Rack shelves play a crucial role in determining how your data center is designed and maintained. There are two important factors that you should consider before buying a rack shelf.

Weight Management

The most important factor in determining the type of rack shelf you require is the weight-handling capability of the shelf. If you fail to acknowledge that, you risk damaging the equipment in your data center permanently. A simple step that you can follow is to find the weight of all the equipment going on the shelf and then determining the type of shelf that you want to buy.

30 lbs – these are shelves designed to hold only the keyboard and a mouse. However, you should also take in to account, the weight of the hands of a person using the keyboard. Most keyboard shelves come with the durability to handle the weight of the hands as well as the keyboard.

60 lbs – these are also considered lightweight and can hold a monitor, keyboard and mouse.

95 lbs – these are medium-duty shelves and can handle lightweight servers, powerful CPUs and other smaller equipment.

200+ lbs – there are heavy duty shelves that can handle up to 500 lbs of weight. These are used in most data centers to house heavy servers, computers, monitors and other equipment.


Once you have determined the weight of the server rack you are going to buy, you can next look at the design of your data center in terms of accessibility. Accessibility in a data center is crucial to ensure that you spend very little effort and time to reach a certain component without affecting how its surrounding components are positioned.

Fixed Rack Shelves

These traditional rack shelves can only be removed and inserted. If you are required to reach out to a power inlet at the back of the server, it might be difficult to maneuver and ultimately take additional time to perform simple actions. However, having a fixed shelf can prevent any accidental movements from affecting the server and other equipment. Fixed shelves are also naturally less expensive for a higher weight holding capacity.

Sliding Rack Shelves

Sliding racks can allow you to slide the rack from bottom to top and from left to right. Having shelves which are movable can make cable running and troubleshooting easier and faster. However, even the smallest movement might damage the server and equipment housed inside it. They are also relatively more expensive of the same weight handling capabilities compared to fixed shelves.

Rotating Rack Shelves

If you have equipment which have to be accessed very often, it might be better to house them in rotating shafts which can provide for extremely easy accessibility. Since these racks are mounted using square, round or threaded holes, they can hold the servers securely in place. In terms of cost, rotating shelves can be the most expensive out of the three shelves mentioned there. Therefore, we suggest carefully reviewing its necessity before installing them.

We understand the importance of having sturdy shelves which provide maximum load bearing capabilities at reasonable costs for a data center. At Hardy Racks, we house strong shelves which can be customized to your every need. To know more about our services and products, get in touch with us now.

bottom of page