HOW ARE LARGE CAPACITY FORKLIFTS DIFFERENT?
Need a new or want to replace a large capacity forklift? Contact our equipment specialist for details and quote on a Toyota high-capacity forklift.
Depending on the industry and application, your facility may use a large capacity forklift, a unit with a capacity of 15,500 lb or more. Although these forklifts are usually operated inside the facility to move machinery and specialty manufactured product, oftentimes they are used outside, working on uneven and rough terrain.
While features of a large capacity forklift are similar to its smaller counterparts, they have subtle differences in maintenance and safety.
To keep your large capacity forklift and its load stable, the correct tires must be in place. Units with mismatched tires (i.e. new tires matched with worn tires, different ply ratings, bias versus radial) on the front drive axle will compromise balance. If truck tires are substituted as replacements, the sidewall will flex and give under the heavy weight. This uneven load can cause an expensive repair such as a broken drive axle. It is also important to ensure your forklift maintains the correct tire air pressure to avoid cracked rims and tire failure.
Because of the forklift’s large size, an operator may assume it can carry any load. It is important the operator understands the true load center of the unit both with and without a load for heavy, long, and awkward product. Attachments must also be considered when factoring the actual capacity. This information can be found on the forklift’s data tag(s).
These forklifts are heavy and can crush pavement, dock boards and other surfaces not structured to hold such weight. One particularly dangerous scenario is using a large capacity forklift in a trailer. While the forklift may fit into the trailer, it will collapse the floor. Instruct operators where they can – and cannot – operate the forklift because a large capacity forklift needs more room to maneuver, especially for its tail swing. When this isn’t considered, the operator may hit racking, product or another employee during turns.
Large capacity forklifts require unique tools and resources. For example, a technician servicing a radiator will find it to be more compact and working on a mast may require two technicians. Also, inspecting the forklift takes longer and may require a manlift to look at the forklift’s feature. Although some have in-house technicians, many companies find it beneficial to outsource maintenance of their large capacity forklift to eliminate the investment in tools, resources, and training.
If you have only one large capacity forklift, your production schedule will be vulnerable to a breakdown. The rough application exposes your forklift to dust, dirt, sand, etc., but placing your unit on a planned maintenance schedule will catch mechanical issues early. Calculate the number of hours the forklift is in use each day to determine an inspection schedule.
Most large capacity forklifts operate on diesel fuel, but operators may mistakenly fill the tank with gasoline. Compared to a smaller forklift, a large capacity forklift will be quicker and more responsive during operation. Operators should be given hands-on instruction and practice time with the forklift to understand the forklift’s speed and for proper & safe operation.
Whether you have a need to purchase, service or rent a large capacity forklift, Southwest can help. Contact our equipment specialists for a quote! Southwest is your source for Toyota Forklifts, a leader in large capacity forklifts.