While as reliable and useful as well-made forklifts are, they still need frequent preventative maintenance to remain in good working condition.

Imagine the condition of wear and tear of the forklift mast and tires, electrical system short out, leaky hydraulic pump, and sudden breakdown of forklift in the middle of an operation!

These significant failures because of poorly-maintained forklifts can lead to potential injuries like struck-by injuries, caught-in between equipment, other life-threatening injuries like falls.

On the other hand, a well-maintained forklift will provide you a reliable and safe service. So, if you want to get the most out of your equipment and reduce forklift accidents, regular maintenance is a must. Check out four forklift maintenance tips to ensure a smooth functionality and less downtime:

Routine Inspection of Forklift Tires

As forklifts regularly traverse the same paths around the warehouse, tires tend to wear out quickly.  This repetitive motion makes the tires more prone to wear out on specific areas. This can further lead to spring leaks, deflated tires, and lost tread.

Since tires are crucial for proper operation, the forklift maintenance schedule must include regular servicing and inspection. Daily checks must include a pressure check and visual examination to ensure they are in good shape and has sufficient tread.

Make a Forklift Maintenance Plan

It is a good idea to start your forklift maintenance plan and follow it to identify potential issues early, such as faltering brakes, and leaky hoses. This early inspection will ensure that it is safe before every shift, save you time and cost over waiting to repair when they start interfering with the operations.

Make a standard checklist to assure that the areas of concern are acknowledged before the forklift is put into action. This may include:

  • Seat belt function
  • Hoses
  • Fluid levels
  • Brake performance
  • Forks and overhead guards
  • Regular battery maintenance

Forklift Cleanliness=Improved Aesthetic Appeal!

While forklift cleanliness does improve its aesthetic appeal, it also prevents the buildup of dust and combustible materials such as lint.  Further, it prevents blocked radiators and other problems that can hamper both the safety and effective operation of the lift.

Therefore, you must consider weekly cleanings as an essential part of your forklift maintenance plan. This process might include wiping down dirt and stuck elements, blowing out the radiator, and changing any filters that have accumulated dust particles.

This regular cleaning will keep the machinery in top working condition for many years. This will, in turn, save you money by minimizing wear and tear on the machine and eliminating the buildup of dust and debris.

Addressing Issues Early To Prevent a Major Breakdown

Despite a regular maintenance schedule and daily checks, there may be unexpected problems that can arise with the forklift. For instance, an operator might notice that the brake becoming soft throughout their shift, or tines bend or break during work.

Addressing these issues early can prevent major problems from becoming life-threatening and costly. For instance, it is much low-cost to fix a coolant leak than replacing the whole engine to avoid extensive damage. Also, it is safer to examine soft brakes earlier than to wait until it stops working completely.

Deal with any issues as they arise to keep the forklift in good working condition. This means encouraging employees to report problems and stop operating the lift if it is malfunctioning, address unusual or loud noises, and promptly called in a repair team to deal with issues.

Conclusion

Planned forklift maintenance ensures you are getting the maximum ROI with the minimum cost of ownership. So, don’t just cross your fingers hoping for the best, instead stick to the maintenance schedule to minimize downtime!