Choosing the proper forklift for your business can make the difference between an inefficient and cumbersome work environment and a smooth running operation. The right forklift for the job will ensure that your business moves the goods and products that make up your revenue safely and efficiently.
There are many things to consider when shopping for a fork lift. The type of environment it will work in, the power requirements and lift capacities are just some of the elements to keep in mind. Below is a list of things to consider when choosing the best fork lift for your business.
Determining whether your business even requires a motorized forklift is the first step. You may look at that 2,500lbs of material on that pallet and think you need a forklift to move it around. But a standard human powered hand truck or pallet jack is able to move anything up to 3,000 lbs rather effectively.
If the distances and height that you need to move your material is reasonably traversed by a human, and the weight is generally under 3,000 lbs, you may find that a forklift is not the best choice. A pallet jack may be a better option.
And you can rent a forklift in those few cases where you need the capacity of a powered forklift.
Alright, so you have determined that your business needs and will benefit from a powered fork lift. Fantastic! Let’s look at some things you should consider.
The standard sit down rider warehouse fork lift comes with either a gas or an electric engine. Internal combustion forklifts are easier to refuel and maintain than their electric cousins. They are ideal for work environments that are outdoors and exposed to the elements. And they generally are capable of higher lift reach than electric fork lifts.
For indoor fork lift needs, the electric power option is preferred. The electric motor generates zero emissions, which allows it to operate indoors in areas with no or limited ventilation. They are also quieter than their internal combustion counterparts and have relatively low operating costs. A drawback is the need to charge the battery for a much longer time than it takes to change a fuel cell or fill a diesel tank.
Another thing to consider before you purchase a forklift is how heavy the material usually is and how high it needs to be moved. Remember the pallet jack can move a few thousand pounds, but it can’t lift it all that high. That is where a forklift comes in. While it varies from model to model, a standard forklift can lift between 3,000 and 6,000lbs approximately 20 ft.
Typically, internal combustion power fork lifts are going to be able to lift more than an electric forklift.
The thing that determines what kind of fork lift works best for your company more than anything else is the type of environment it will be used in. The work environment dictates everything from power generation (gas or electric) to the type of tires your lift needs. If it is an indoor environment with smooth surfaces, an electric powered forklift with cushion tires will work great. If the work space is outdoors on rough terrain, a gas powered fork lift with pneumatic tires is your best bet.
Another thing to consider is the amount of space it has to move around in. While many warehouse and stores are designed with the fork lift or pallet jack in mind, sometimes there is just not enough room for a standard fork lift to manipulate large loads. There are specially designed swing mast and narrow aisle forklifts that are able to manipulate and lift large loads in smaller spaces.
Taking all these elements into account while browsing for forklifts for your business will ensure that you get the most out of your material handling investment
No matter what your forklift needs are, Reno Forklift can provide you with the knowledge and industry expertise to get you set up with the forklift best suited to your needs. Reno Forklift offers new and used forklifts and forklift rentals of a variety of types and models. Serving the Reno, NV area for over 50 years, Reno forklifts also offers products and parts for a number of material handling equipment and needs. Come take a look at our catalog of products and contact us today!