How to Use Filing Cabinet Without Rails

Are you looking for ways to organize and store your paperwork without having the bulky rails of a filing cabinet? If so, you’ve come to the right place! In this blog post, we will delve into different strategies on how to use filing cabinet without rails.

How to Use Filing Cabinet Without Rails

Whether it’s for business documents or personal papers such as bills, letters, certificates, etc., there are some highly effective methods that allow you to store everything neatly and securely using only your cabinet itself. 

We’ll explore these tips in great depth in our post today, as well as discuss possible alternatives should you choose not to utilize a filing cabinet at all! So if organizing is something that has been giving you grief lately, let us help end the hassle with some easy-to-follow advice. Read more below!

9 Best Ways on How to Use Filing Cabinet Without Rails

1. Using Folder Dividers:

A great way to use filing cabinets without rails is by using folder dividers. These are typically made of plastic and you just slide them into the filing cabinet’s drawers in order to divide each drawer into several sections for separating various folders or documents.

Using folder dividers is also helpful for organizing multiple subjects in one drawer, thereby eliminating the need to have several filing cabinet drawers dedicated to different categories.

2. Labeling Your Files:

Labeling your files is one of the most efficient ways to file without rails. This ensures that documents are organized and easy to find and reference. Labels can be printed with a printer or handwritten on adhesive labels, depending on what you prefer.

Labeling Your Files is One of the Most Efficient Ways

To make sure everything remains in its place, consider labeling each drawer as well! You can even color code your labels for extra organization.

3. Utilizing Box Files:

Another way to use filing cabinets without rails is by utilizing box files. These are usually made of cardboard and feature a folding cover that allows you to store items like paper, envelopes, notebooks, or folders inside the box. This works well if you need to stack a bunch of documents in one drawer as the box file prevents them from sliding around and allows you to easily store items inside.

4. Investing in Stackable Trays:

An effective way to organize your filing cabinet without rails is by investing in stackable trays. These come in various sizes and colors, so you can choose the one that best suits your needs. Stackable trays allow you to neatly store documents in each drawer and are ideal for when you want quick access to certain papers or folders.

5. Utilizing Magazine Files:

If you’re looking for ways to keep your filing cabinet drawers tidy, magazine files are an ideal solution. These are typically made of plastic and feature a slanted design, allowing you to easily store magazines in them without worrying about wrinkling or crumpling the paper.

Keep Your Filing Cabinet Drawers Tidy

Not only will they keep your drawers looking neat, but they also provide easy access to magazines for quick referencing!

6. Installing Magazine Racks:

Installing magazine racks inside your filing cabinet is a great way to organize documents without having to use rails. These are usually made of metal and have adjustable shelves so that you can easily store papers, folders, and other items in them. You can also hang them up on the walls of your office or home if you don’t want to take up any drawer space.

7. Using Binder Clips:

If you’re looking for a creative way to store documents in your filing cabinet without rails, binder clips are an excellent solution. These are typically made from metal and feature two clamps that are connected by a wire or plastic loop. They allow you to easily attach documents and folders together in order to keep them organized and easy to find.

8. Installing Magnetic Strips:

Magnetic strips are a great way to store papers in your filing cabinet without using rails because they provide an easy way to hang up documents. These are usually made of metal or plastic and feature magnets that allow you to attach documents such as memos, notes, or reports to the strip. The magnets will hold the paper in place and keep it from sliding around when the drawer is opened and closed.

Magnetic Strips Are a Great Way to Store Papers

9. Utilizing Magnetic Boxes:

Finally, magnetic boxes are a great way to use filing cabinets without rails. These are usually made of metal and feature a lid that has magnets attached to it, allowing you to store documents such as papers, folders, or notebooks in the box. The magnets will keep everything securely in place while also providing easy access when needed.

By following these tips on how to use filing cabinets without rails, you can easily organize your documents and make sure they’re neatly stored away for easy access whenever you need them. This will help keep your office or home clutter-free and ensure that important documents are always within reach.

Additional Tips and Tricks to Use Filing Cabinet Without Rails

1. To minimize the risk of drawers getting stuck or jammed, oil all moving parts. Using a light lubricant will help the smooth operation of each drawer.

2. Float the filing cabinet by centering it on four furniture coasters so that it is not directly in contact with flooring material or carpets which can cause friction and impede the opening of drawers.

3. Select a filing cabinet that has counterweights at the back or sides for more stability, especially if you are planning to move it around often.

4. Label each drawer so that folders can be easily identified when needed. This will save time and reduce frustration when searching for documents stored in the filing cabinet.

5. Use a file organizer to keep folders neat and upright. This will prevent any accidental spilling of paper when opening or closing drawers.

6. Make sure all documents are securely stored in hanging files or letter-sized flat files, as standard box-bottom hanging files can cause heavy drawers to be harder to open.

7. Place heavier items such as books or binders in the bottom drawers to help balance and distribute the weight of the filing cabinet more evenly.

8. When buying a filing cabinet, pick one that is made from high-grade material with heavy-duty construction so it can last for many years without becoming damaged or worn out.

9. To keep your filing cabinet in beautiful condition, wipe it down with a soft cloth and furniture polish every few months.

10. Finally, make sure to use the correct key to lock the drawers if you wish for additional security for the documents stored inside. This is especially important if you are storing confidential or sensitive documents.

Keep Your Filing Cabinet in Beautiful Condition

Following these tips and tricks will help you get the most out of your filing cabinet, even if it does not have rails. An efficient filing system is essential to keeping a home or business organized, and with the right care, your filing cabinet can remain an integral part of managing your documents for years to come.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I Use a Filing Cabinet Without Rails?

Yes, you can use a filing cabinet without rails. Without the rails, you may have to manually adjust the depth of the drawers in order to accommodate different sizes and types of documents. This can be done by loosening or tightening the screws that hold the drawer front in place. 

However, it is important to note that without the rails, you will not get the same level of support and stability as with traditional rails. Additionally, over time the screws can become loose or even break if adjusted too frequently. Therefore, it is generally recommended to use filing cabinets with rails for maximum efficiency and stability.

What Is the Best Way to Store Documents Without Rails?

The best way to store documents without rails is by using hanging folders on each drawer. A set of hanging folders can provide better organization and easier access to your documents than filing them without rails. 

It’s important to note that you will likely need to purchase additional hanging folder frames in order to fit the folders into the filing cabinet drawers. Additionally, you may need to adjust the depth of the drawer in order to accommodate the hanging folder frames.

Can I Use Filing Cabinet Rails With Any Cabinet?

No, not all filing cabinets are compatible with rails. Before purchasing rails for your filing cabinet, it is important to check the compatibility of your filing cabinet with the rails. 

Filing Cabinets Are Compatible With Rails

Additionally, some filing cabinets come with pre-installed rails and cannot be retrofitted for use without them. If you are unsure if your filing cabinet is compatible with rails, it may be best to consult a professional or contact the manufacturer directly.

What Are the Benefits of Using Filing Cabinet Rails?

Filing cabinet rails provide a number of benefits. The most notable benefit is that they provide extra support and stability to the filing cabinet drawers, allowing you to store heavier documents without fear of them falling out. 

Additionally, they can help increase the organization of your stored documents by providing guide tracks for the drawer fronts, making it easier to find and access the documents you need. Finally, they can help protect your documents from dust and moisture since the rails are sealed along the drawers, preventing air from entering.


Knowing how to use filing cabinet without rails is an important skill for any office environment. By using hanging folders, you can easily store your documents without rails and maximize the efficiency of your filing cabinet.

However, it is generally recommended to use filing cabinets with rails for increased stability and organization. Before buying a set of rails, be sure to check if they are compatible with your filing cabinet model. Furthermore, understand the benefits of using filing cabinet rails in order to get the most out of your office storage.

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Angela Ervin

Angela is the executive editor of officefixes. She began her career as an interior designer before applying her strategic and creative passion to home and office design. She has close to 15 years of experience in creative writing and online content strategy for Office design and decor,home decorations as well as other efforts. She loves her job and has the privilege of working with an extraordinary team. She lives with her husband, two sons, and daughter in Petersburg. When she's not busy working she spent time with her family.

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