What are the four most critical forklift parts?

Maintenance tips to keep forklift operation costs down

Every machine has parts that it can’t operate without. These must be maintained properly to ensure you get the longest and most effective wear from them. Forklift trucks are no exception. They are used every day, in some plants and factories 24/7. This level of use hammers forklifts and can add huge costs to your operation. Like all machinery, some parts are more critical than others.

Ensuring that you check and maintain these four parts properly will improve workplace safety, increase productivity, and decrease costs associated with forklift maintenance.

1.    All the moving parts

OK, so a bit of a cheat here, but ALL the moving parts must be effectively maintained. You must ensure that they are properly lubricated. This reduces damage caused by friction. Make sure that bearings are inspected and changed when they are worn.

Don’t neglect rust on your forklift. Rust also increases friction between moving parts and increases damage.

If you run a forklift with worn parts, you risk damaging other parts. You will get less effective use, the engine will need to work harder, and eventually, the worn part will cause damage to other parts. Neglecting the moving parts of your forklift only increases the possibility of a very expensive breakdown.

2.    Forklift fluids

Fluids – including hydraulic, brake, antifreeze, and gas fluids – must be checked regularly. Make it part of your daily check routine, and you will quickly notice if something is amiss. Low fluid levels can be catastrophic:

  • Radiators should be checked for leaks
  • Check the oil
  • Ensure that hydraulic fluids are maintained
  • Keep the coolant topped up

Ignore these basics at your peril. Daily checks and records will ensure that your forklift operates at peak efficiency. Rapidly depleting fluids will quickly alert you to possible maintenance issues that must be dealt with.

3.    The dashboard

Forklift drivers should have one eye on the dashboard at all times. Gauges and warning lights alert drivers to engine problems and low fluid levels. If these gauges and warning lights aren’t working, you risk lessening the life of your forklift. You also risk dangerous operation.

It is essential that a forklift’s dashboard works, and works well. You wouldn’t want to drive a car without a functioning dashboard. A forklift is not the exception that proves this rule.

4.    Forklift tyres

Forklift tyres may be the most crucial of all moving parts on your forklift. They are expensive elements of a forklift, too, and so must be treated well to lengthen their life and reduce your costs.

Tyre maintenance is essential. The condition of your forklift’s tyres affects efficiency, driver comfort, and safety. Ensuring that you get the best life from your tyres starts before you buy new forklift tyres. You must know how to choose forklift tyres for the job and type of forklift.

To get the best life from your tyres, do these three things:

Are you certain that you are maintaining your forklift effectively? When was the last time you benefitted from a tyre check on your forklifts? To find out about our comprehensive tyre services and how they could help you cut costs on your forklift operations, contact Darra Tyres.

Keeping you safe on the road and in the workplace,

Kevin Wood

About the Author

Kevin has been at the forefront of the tyre industry for over 20 years. Kevin's speciality is in industrial and commercial tyres including the management and upkeep of fleets. Kevin has worked with vehicles his whole career from painting, mechanical, suspension and panel beating he has also spent time in the Australia Army as a driver. He has driven all size of vehicles throughout his career so understands the demands placed on drivers.