6 Important Factors To Consider When Choosing The Right Forklift For Your Business

From lifting and moving numerous materials to cleaning up worksites, forklifts play a crucial role in many industries. Typically, they are used in warehouses, at construction and hardware sites, and distribution and storage centers to assist with various tasks, not only that, but they also double as a means of transporting workers across different sites. If you are new to your industry, you may be surprised to know that there are different types of forklifts and that your choice can impact the costs of operation, stock management, productivity, and the morale of your employees. This is why we are here to tell you about 6 important factors to consider when choosing the right forklift for your business.

1.Environment

The first thing that must be considered when selecting a forklift is the kind of environment that it will be operating in. Each type of forklift comes with different tire selections, as well as fuel types. This is why you must identify whether the flooring is smooth or rough if it will be used indoors or outdoors, and how many hours you intend on operating it for. Indoor forklifts can help you with the warehouse’s layout in terms of lift direction, obstacles, the height and width of aisles, and more. Outdoor forklifts are designed to handle the harsh environmental conditions and the transportation of dock stock, dump materials, and the materials found at junkyards, recycling centers, and container yards.

2. Capacity and Load Size

One terrible mistake would be selecting a forklift with a maximum capacity that’s below your needs. This would negatively affect productivity levels, disrupt workflow, slow down operations, and possibly, result in additional costs. Similarly, investing in a forklift that goes beyond your needs can be a waste of resources. This is why, before selecting a forklift, you must consider the type of stock that you want to handle, the average load weight, your heaviest load, and your load’s width. According to the equipment specialists that sell used hyster forklifts, the type of load affects the choice you make; some forklifts come with certain attachments that can enhance the movement process and execute it more efficiently. Appliance clamps, paper roll clamps, and carton clamps are some of the attachments available. 

3. Height Restrictions

Similarly to the capacity and load size aspects, you need to make sure that your chosen forklift meets your height restrictions. Think about the highest point that needs to be reached by the forklift, the typically needed lift height, and any height restrictions, such as hanging lights or ceiling beams if indoors. The mast’s collapsed height is also something to look into if the forklift needs to go below a certain structure. 

4. Fuel Type

Diesel, electric, and gas are the three different fuel types available in forklift selections. Generally speaking, electric forklifts tend to cost more money; though, they are more durable and have lower consumption than other forklift options. Electric forklifts are also advantageous because they operate quietly and have zero emissions. They are ideal if you are planning to use them indoors. Gas and diesel forklifts, however, move faster and are designed to handle larger loads. You should go for diesel forklifts if you plan to operate them outdoors or execute some heavy lifting.

5. Tire Selection 

Solid and pneumatic tires are among the most popular types of forklift tires. Cushioned and white non-marking tires are also widely used in various industries. The type of tire that you should go for would depend on what you want to use it for and the environment in which it will be used. Choosing the wrong tires can be disastrous when it comes to safety and handling matters.

6. Ergonomics

The seating and internal aspects of the forklift should not be overlooked. Keep in mind that the forklift operator will be stuck in the machine for hours; not only is it a matter of humanity but making sure that they have access to comfortable seating will also increase productivity. If the operator ends up with injuries, such as back pains, which is likely if the seating is uncomfortable, you can end up in legal trouble. This is why you should invest in quality ergonomics. 

Forklifts are known for their versatile operations in a wide array of industries. Many people think that any functional forklift can help them get the job done and are disappointed when left with a practically useless and expensive piece of machinery. To make sure that you get the most out of your forklift, there are a few things that you should consider before purchasing one. Factors including environment, capacity, load size, height restrictions, fuel type, tire selection, and ergonomics should all be kept in mind.