Best Metal Storage Cabinet for Optimizing Your Industrial Workspace

man standing in front of a metal storage cabinet

Industrial metal storage cabinets are specialized storage solutions designed for the rigorous demands of industrial environments. These cabinets are crafted from robust metals, offering a sturdy and secure place to store tools, equipment, and materials essential in industrial operations. Their primary purpose is to organize and protect contents, reducing workspace clutter and enhancing operational efficiency.


Role and Significance of Metal Storage Cabinets

In today's fast-paced industrial environments, efficiency and organization are not just desirable; they're essential. This is where industrial metal cabinets play a pivotal role. A metal storage cabinet with lock offers unparalleled security, ensuring that tools, documents, and materials are safe and accessible only to authorized personnel. This security aspect is indispensable in industries where protecting sensitive materials is crucial. Furthermore, industrial storage cabinets cater to diverse organizational needs.

Whether it's industrial cabinets with drawers for small tools or larger compartments for bulky equipment, these units are tailored to maintain order in dynamic workspaces. The robustness of industrial metal cabinets not only withstands the harsh conditions often found in industrial settings but also ensures longevity, making them a wise investment for any facility.

In modern workplaces, where space is at a premium, the efficient use of vertical and horizontal space is critical. Metal cabinet storage solutions address this by offering customizable configurations that maximize space utilization while maintaining workplace aesthetics and functionality. As a result, these metal storage cabinets are not just storage solutions; they are integral components of a well-organized, efficient, and safe industrial workspace.


Types of Metal Used in Storage Cabinets

The two primary metals used in the construction of industrial storage cabinets are steel and aluminum, each offering distinct advantages and considerations. 

  • Steel: Known for its exceptional strength and durability, steel is the more common choice for industrial metal cabinets. It is highly resilient against physical impacts and heavy loads, making it ideal for storing heavy equipment. The main drawback of steel is its susceptibility to rust, requiring additional coatings or treatments for corrosion resistance.
  • Aluminum: This metal is lighter than steel, making aluminum cabinets easier to move and handle. They are inherently resistant to corrosion, a significant advantage in environments prone to moisture or chemicals. However, aluminum is generally less durable than steel and may not be suitable for storing very heavy items. 

When it comes to durability and maintenance, both metals have their merits. Steel cabinets, with proper care and rust-proof treatments, can last for many years, even in demanding industrial conditions. Regular cleaning and occasional touch-ups can maintain their appearance and functionality.

On the other hand, aluminum cabinets require less maintenance due to their corrosion resistance but may need more frequent replacements if subjected to heavy or abrasive use. The choice between steel and aluminum ultimately depends on the specific needs of the industrial environment, considering factors like load requirements, exposure to elements, and mobility needs.


Factors to Consider in Choosing the Right Metal Storage Cabinet

When selecting the right industrial metal storage cabinet, several critical factors must be taken into account to ensure it meets the specific needs of your workspace. 

  • Size and Capacity: The foremost consideration is the size and capacity of the cabinet. It’s essential to choose a cabinet that fits comfortably in your available space while providing adequate storage for your needs. Consider the dimensions of the items you plan to store. For bulky equipment, larger cabinets with spacious shelves or compartments are necessary. Conversely, for smaller tools and materials, cabinets with multiple drawers or adjustable shelving offer better organization and space utilization. Always measure your space and assess your storage requirements before making a decision.
  • Security Features: The security of stored items is important in industrial settings. Look for cabinets with robust locking mechanisms that can protect sensitive materials, tools, or documents. Keyed locks, combination locks, or electronic lock systems are common options, each providing different levels of security. Additionally, consider the overall build quality and durability of the cabinet as these contribute to its security and ability to withstand break-in attempts.


Top 7 Choices for Metal Storage Cabinets in the Market

Global Industrial Wall Storage Cabinet

This cabinet combines a contemporary style with durable steel construction, making it well-suited for heavy warehouse use. Its compact dimensions are ideal for space-saving needs, while the adjustable shelves (up to 90 lbs each) provide flexible storage options. The recessed locking handle with two keys is a notable feature, ensuring security for stored items. However, its smaller size may not accommodate larger tools or bulkier items, making it less ideal for those with extensive storage needs.

Size: 12.75" D x 13.75" W x 30" H Capacity: Two 22 gauge steel shelves that can hold up to 90 lbs each With Lock: Yes, Recessed locking handle

Seville Classics Storage Cabinet

This large, sturdy all-steel cabinet is designed for high-capacity and versatile storage, ideal for professional environments. The adjustable shelves and a total load capacity of 600 lbs make it highly adaptable for various storage requirements. Its locking stainless-steel doors, finished with a fingerprint-resistant coating, add to both its security and aesthetic appeal. The size, while perfect for extensive storage needs, might be too cumbersome for smaller spaces, and it requires assembly, which could be a drawback for some.

Size: 48" W x 24" D x 72" H Capacity: Up to 600 lbs of evenly distributed weight With Lock: Yes 

Sandusky Lee Mobile Metal Storage Cabinet

This cabinet features a heavy-gauge welded steel construction and a total of five shelves, four of which are adjustable, offering substantial storage capacity. The heavy-duty caster base ensures easy mobility, while the recessed locking handle secures the contents. Its environmental friendliness is enhanced by the Greenguard Gold certified powder coat finish. However, its mobility feature might be superfluous for stationary storage requirements, and attaching the casters can be a bit of a task.

Size: 46" W x 24" D x 78" H Capacity: Five shelves that can hold up to 230 lbs each With Lock: Yes, Recessed locking handle

WORKPRO Storage Cabinet

This cabinet stands out with its high load capacity (900 lbs total) and adjustable shelving, providing a versatile storage solution. The enhanced locking system with four keys assures high security, and its SPCC cold-rolled steel construction is both durable and corrosion-resistant. However, the need for assembly and its size might not be suitable for all spaces or users seeking a ready-to-use option.

Size: 15.75" D x 31.5" W x 71" H Capacity: Up to 900 lbs of evenly distributed weight With Lock: Yes, Enhanced locking system

SI Lyon Metal Cabinet

Offering ample space with powder-coated steel construction, these cabinets are built for longevity. The four full-width shelves with a 110 lb capacity each offer versatile storage solutions, and the built-in chrome-plated handle and locking system ensure security. However, the requirement for assembly might limit its appeal.

Size: 18" D x 36" W x 78" H Capacity: Four full-width shelves that can hold 110 lbs each With Lock: Yes, Built-in chrome-plated handle and locking system 

Fedmax Metal Storage Cabinet

This cabinet is versatile, with adjustable shelf heights and a strong lock and key system for security. The high weight capacity and reinforced metal frame make it suitable for heavy-duty storage. While assembly is required, its design and functionality may be suitable for industrial environments.

Size: 70.86" H x 31.5" W x 15.75" D Capacity: Four shelves that can hold 180 lbs each With Lock: Yes 

Lorell Fortress Storage Cabinet

With its durable, fully welded steel construction and adjustable shelves, this cabinet offers robust and flexible storage solutions. The locking, recessed handle provides security, and the hinged doors allow for easy access. However, its size might not be appropriate for all spaces, and the design, while functional, lacks some advanced features found in other models.

Size: 72" H x 24" W x 36" D Capacity: Up to 900 lbs of evenly distributed weight With Lock: Yes, Recessed locking handle 

Storage Cabinet Design and Aesthetics

The design and aesthetics of industrial metal cabinets, though often overlooked, play a significant role in creating a functional and visually appealing workspace.

Customization Options

Modern industrial cabinets come in various colors and finishes, allowing you to choose one that complements your workplace’s design theme. Selecting the right color can not only enhance the visual appeal but also assist in categorization or departmentalization within the workspace. Finishes can range from sleek and modern to rugged and industrial, depending on your preference and the cabinet’s intended use.

Integrating Cabinets into Your Workspace Design

The cabinet's design should align with the overall aesthetic and functional layout of your workspace. Consider how the cabinet will fit in with other furniture like shadow boards and existing equipment. Cabinets with sleek designs and modern finishes can add a professional touch to the workspace, while more robust, utilitarian designs might be better suited for workshops or areas with heavy machinery. The goal is to choose a cabinet that not only serves its functional purpose but also enhances the overall work environment, contributing to a more organized, efficient, and aesthetically pleasing industrial space.


Maintenance and Upkeep

Proper maintenance and upkeep are crucial for ensuring the longevity and optimal performance of a metal storage cabinet.

Cleaning and Care Tips

Regular cleaning is essential to maintain the appearance and functionality of your metal storage cabinets. For steel cabinets, use a mild detergent and water to wipe down the surfaces, avoiding abrasive cleaners that can scratch or damage the finish. For aluminum cabinets, a damp cloth with a mild soap solution is usually sufficient. It's important to dry the cabinets thoroughly after cleaning to prevent moisture accumulation, which can lead to rust or corrosion. Also, periodically check and tighten any loose hinges or handles to ensure the doors open and close smoothly.

Ensuring Lasting Durability

To ensure lasting durability, it’s vital to address any signs of wear or damage promptly. For steel cabinets, keep an eye out for rust spots, which can be treated with rust remover and a fresh coat of protective paint or sealant. Aluminum cabinets, while more resistant to corrosion, should be inspected for dents or warping, which can affect their structural integrity. For industrial cabinets with drawers, avoid overloading the shelves or drawers, as this can cause strain on the cabinet's structure and reduce its lifespan. Regular inspections and proactive maintenance will help your industrial storage cabinets remain functional and reliable for years to come.


Quality Standards and Safety Requirements

Adhering to standards and requirements set by regulating organizations is important when selecting or using industrial metal cabinets to ensure you’re getting good quality products and using them correctly, especially if it will be for the long term.

Compliance with Industry Standards

Industrial storage cabinets must meet specific standards to ensure they are built to last and can withstand rigorous use. These standards often pertain to the cabinet's hardware material quality and durability. For instance, A156.9 - 2020 and A156.11 - 2019 standards set by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) and Builders Hardware Manufacturers Association (BHMA) contain requirements on manufacturing and testing criteria for cabinet hardware including hinges, knobs, pulls, catches, shelf rests, standards and brackets, drawer slides, as well as cabinet locks and others to guarantee they will last long even with repeated use.

OSHA Requirements for Placement of Cabinets

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) sets forth regulations that look into all aspects of safety in the workplace. They may have requirements that dictate the placement of cabinets, particularly in relation to your organization’s Emergency Action Plan during fires and other workplace emergencies to make sure it does not hinder emergency escape route assignments. It’s crucial for facilities to understand and adhere to OSHA requirements to ensure a safe working environment. Failure to comply with these regulations can result in penalties, but more importantly, it can compromise the safety of the employees.



What are metal storage cabinets made of?

Metal storage cabinets are primarily made of durable materials like steel or aluminum, each offering different strengths and resistances.

What are the pros and cons of metal cabinets?

Pros: Durability, security, and resistance to wear and tear. Cons: Can be prone to rust (steel) or less sturdy (aluminum), and generally heavier than other materials.

How deep are storage cabinets?

The depth of storage cabinets can vary widely, but common depths range from 12 to 24 inches.

What does cabinet storage do?

Cabinet storage provides an organized space for securely storing tools, equipment, supplies, and documents, especially in work or industrial environments.

Should you leave space between cabinet and wall?

Yes, it's advisable to leave a small space between the cabinet and wall for ventilation and to prevent moisture buildup or damage to both the wall and cabinet.

The material provided in this article is for general information purposes only. It is not intended to replace professional/legal advice or substitute government regulations, industry standards, or other requirements specific to any business/activity. While we made sure to provide accurate and reliable information, we make no representation that the details or sources are up-to-date, complete or remain available. Readers should consult with an industrial safety expert, qualified professional, or attorney for any specific concerns and questions.


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Author: Herbert Post

Born in the Philadelphia area and raised in Houston by a family who was predominately employed in heavy manufacturing. Herb took a liking to factory processes and later safety compliance where he has spent the last 13 years facilitating best practices and teaching updated regulations. He is married with two children and a St Bernard named Jose. Herb is a self-described compliance geek. When he isn’t studying safety reports and regulatory interpretations he enjoys racquetball and watching his favorite football team, the Dallas Cowboys.