Wes Nolan, the warehouse manager at Pak-sher, shares the impact material handling has on their business.
Forklift Glossary of Terms
Battery Capacity = Battery Capacity is measured with its ability to maintain power over a period of time with a specified consumption of energy, presented in Ampere hours (Ah). Common forklift voltages are 12, 24, 36, 48, 72 DC.
Battery Compartment = The manufacturer’s allotted space of a lift truck, provided to house a battery. A A battery compartment is expressed as: L x W x H. (Length x Width x Height)
Battery Model Identification = composed of 3 set of numbers expressed PER cell. (Voltage – Amps – Positive plates (Typically stamped into the 1 positive lead strap. Example: 18-85-25)
Battery Weight, min. = Minimum weight of a battery for per lift truck model recommended by the OEM.
Boom = A powered boom that extends as a telescope from within itself.
Capacity = The rating given a lift truck indicating the amount of weight that a truck will lift to a predetermined fork height at a specified load center. Most common is 24” load center.
Casters = Non-powered swiveled base caster/wheel(s) turn freely.
Control Valves = A valve that controls the direction of flow of hydraulic fluid.
Counterbalanced = A lift truck that utilizes weight in its chassis to counterbalance a load against the center line of the drive wheels.
Data Plate = Typical a metal tag that is stamped by the manufacture showing MODEL and SERIAL number and pertinent data to further identify the unit.
Duplex Mast = Same as Two-Stage Mast Full Free Lift Mast.
Engine Manufacturer = References the OEM that manufactures the engine for a given model.
Engine Model = References the engine nomenclature; sometimes dependent on the lift truck OEM. Many lift truck OEMs do not manufacture their own engines.
Fork Carriage Width = The maximum width of the fork carriage. The carriage is designed to raise and lower in front of the mast; the forks connect to the carriage.
Fork Size = Dimensions of lift truck forks, expressed as: thickness x width x length.
Fork Spread = The maximum distance the forks can be positioned, expressed as width, measured from the outside edge of the forks.
Free Lift = The vertical distance the forks can be raised before a mast begins to telescope.
Freezer Protection = A means of preparing a lift truck to operate in freezer or cold environments. = conditioning may include specialized hydraulic oils, special paint and components.
Full Free Lift = A truck where the fork carriage travels to the top of the inner mast before the inner mast begins to rise.
Gradability = The maximum percent of a slope a lift truck can negotiate with a capacity load.
Hours Per Year = The range of objective hours a user expects to operate a machine on a yearly basis; used as an RV Calculation factor.
Hydraulic Pressure = Indicates the standard pressure of hydraulic fluid for a particular lift truck model, measured by pounds per square inch.
Length to Fork Face = The length of the lift truck measured from the extreme rear end of the lift truck to the vertical surface of the fork face.
Lift Speed, empty = The maximum upward speed forks can travel without a load. Lift Speed w/load = The maximum upward speed forks can travel with a maximum capacity load.
Limited Free Lift = The amount the forks raise before the overall lowered height of a mast increases.
Load Backrest = Connected to the fork carriage, the load backrest extends vertically; the load backrest is a grated shield, which prevents loads from sliding backwards.
Load Capacity = The maximum weight a specified lift truck can lift and/or carry, specified by the OEM.
Load Center = The horizontal distance between the front face and the longitudinal midpoint of an evenly distributed load.
Load Wheels = The wheels located on the load end of a truck.
Lower Speed, empty = The maximum downward speed forks can travel without a load.
Lower Speed w/load = The maximum downward speed forks can travel with a maximum capacity load.
Mast, Standard = (Standard Mast) the standard mast designated by the OEM
Mast – Two-Stage = A telescoping mast that is comprised of two connecting masts: Limited Free Lift (FL) & Full Free Lift (FFL).
Simplex Mast = Same as Two-Stage with limited Free Lift Mast.
Mast Triple Stage = A telescoping mast, which is comprised of three, connecting masts, same as ThreeStage Mast.
Mast Triplex Mast = Same as Triple Stage and Three-Stage Mast.
Mast Quad Stage = A telescoping mast, which is comprised of four, connecting masts.
Mast Boom = A boom that telescopes within itself.(normally manually adjusted)
Mechanical Lift = A non electrical lift.
MFH = Maximum Fork Height. The maximum height of lift truck forks when the mast of the lift truck has reached full extension.
Narrow-Aisle Truck = A lift truck, which is designed specifically for narrow aisles. A narrow aisle is generally considered 7 to 9 feet wide.
NET Horsepower =Maximum horsepower at the flywheel, with intake and exhaust systems in place and accounting for load from auxiliary systems.
Operating Weight = The weight of a standard configured machine, which is assembled and in working order. Please see our specification sheets to see the operating weight.
Order/Stock Picker = A forklift with all controls for raise/lower, travel mounted on an operator’s platform that raises and lowers with the forks.
Overall Height Lowered = The height of a mast completely collapsed.
Overall Height Raised = The maximum extended height of the top of the load backrest or fork carriage of a completely extended mast.
Overall Width = distance between the widest part of a lift truck. In the Guru, when referring to overall width for class 2 & 3 trucks, overall width refers to the width of the power unit, not the outriggers.
Overhead Guard = A framework above the operator’s head attached to a lift truck to protect an operator. Often referred to as “DOG” or Driver’s Over Head Guard.
Overall Guard Height = The distance from the floor surface to highest point of the overhead guard.
Power Type = Refers to the mode of energy or motive force by which a lift truck is propelled, examples include: gasoline/LPG/diesel engine, electric.
Pneumatic Tire = An inflatable tire generally used in an outdoors environment.
Quad-Stage Mast = A lift truck mast that has four sections
Rated Output @ rpm = That engine power available at a specified output of a device under specified conditions of operation. Referenced as revolutions per minute (rpm).
Rated Torque @ rpm = The force that rotates or turns a crankshaft; stated in lb-ft.
Reach Truck = A truck equipped with a pantograph-type reach mechanism that allows the forks to extend out past the supporting outriggers.
Reach Extension = The maximum distance a fork carriage can be extended forward, horizontally. This function is limited to some (Class 2 & 3) “Reach Trucks”.
Rider Truck = A lift truck designed to be operated by an operator whom stands or sits on the unit.
Right Angle Stack = The ability to turn a lift truck 90 degrees in an aisle.
Serial Number = The primary identifier that like as car/truck VIN assigned but the manufacturer on the data tag/often stamped in the frame of the chassis.
Service Weight = The overall weight of a fully configured lift truck
Sideshift = An attachment which can move the forks horizontally to the left or right.
Sideshift Package = A complete shideshift system includes valve, hydraulic hose group and the sideshift hardware.
Stand-Up Rider = A lift truck designed to be controlled by an operator standing.
Tilt Angle = The distance a mast can move (tilt) forward and backward by means of hydraulics expressed tilt angle values as “back/front”.
Drive Tires = Refers to the tires, generally the “drive” tires.
Steer Tires = Refers to the rear or “steer” tires,
Tire Types = Most common know are cushion and pneumatic with many variations .
Transmission Speed F/R =The number of speeds of a transmission, referenced as Front/Back.
Travel Speed, empty = The maximum speed a lift truck can travel without a load.
Travel Speed w/load = The maximum speed a lift truck can travel carrying a full load, or rated capacity.
Turning Radius = The radius of a circle created by outmost projection of a lift truck when the operator has the steering mechanism in the tightest turning position.
Under clearance, frame = Smallest distance between the wheelbase portion of a lift truck frame and a floor surface.
Voltage = The measurement of the force which causes electrical current to flow in a conductor, expressed in volts, examples: 24, 36, 48, 72 & 80 volts.
Wheelbase = The distance between the front axle and the rear axle of a lift truck.
Walkie = A motorized pallet lift truck with limited lift, which an operator walks with controlling direction and speed by a control handle.
Walkie Ride = A motorized pallet lift truck with limited lift, which an operator walks rides with controlling direction and speed by a control handle.
Industrial Truck Association (ITA) Class for forklifts
Class 1 = Electric Motor Rider Lift Trucks: Stand-Up Rider , Sit-Down Rider Cushion Tire , Sit-Down Rider Pneumatic Tire, 3-Wheel Rider Electric
Class 2 = Electric Narrow Aisle Lift Trucks: High-Lift Straddle-Type , Narrow Aisle Single Reach , Narrow Aisle Double Reach, Narrow Aisle Swing Reach, Counterbalanced Order Picker, Straddle Order Picker, Turret Trucks
Class 3 = Electric Hand Trucks: Walkie Low-Lift Pallet Walkie/Ride Low-Lift Pallet Walkie/Ride Reach Pallet Walkie/Ride Straddle Pallet Walkie/Ride High-Lift Counterbalanced
Class 4 = Internal Combustion Cushion Tire Lift Trucks
Class 5 = Internal Combustion Pneumatic Tire Lift Trucks
Forklift for Sale
A Complete User’s Guide to Buying a Quality Used Forklift in Texas
We’ve all heard the stories of “like new” forklifts purchased at auction for pennies on the dollar. While that does happen from time to time, we’re all likely far more familiar with the stories of forklift equipment purchases gone awry – leaving owners with a money pit of parts, equipment, and down time.
So, how do you evaluate used forklifts for sale?
No plan is ever fool-proof, but if you follow the guide below – you’ll likely end up with a dependable piece of equipment that will last for years to come.
(By the way, if you’re looking for Quality Used Forklifts for Sale… We’ve got them.)
Know Your Forklift Needs
It’s important to identify your needs and prioritize your wants. Will your forklift be in a warehouse with concrete floors or will it be outdoors on gravel? If you have warehouse racking, what are your aisle widths and what size equipment can they accommodate? Looking at electric – is your operation wired for the type of charging station you need (3 phase or single phase)?
Also, knowing the terminology that may come up in a discussion can go a long way – check out this glossary of terms.
Pricing Expectations & Budget
The old adage – you get what you pay for is as true for forklifts as it is for automobiles. Top tier brands of quality used forklifts will run roughly half of what a new unit of similar capacity and features cost. General rules of thumb are that the higher the capacity the greater the cost, electrics are typically more expensive than internal combustion lifts, and pneumatics run slightly higher than cushions.
Forklift dealers in particular, may invest additional money to recondition a forklift. That may entail a simple service, cosmetic facelift, or a complete tear-down and rebuild. It all depends on the dealer and the potential market for the lift. It’s important to ask what a price includes. As mentioned earlier, some brands retain their value better than others due to initial quality of parts, manufacturing, and engineering.
Below we’ve provided a very basic pricing guide for standard spec cushion and pneumatic forklifts in the central and east Texas region. It should be noted that every lift is different and depending on specs, the hours, type of application, and maintenance of the equipment can cause the price to be outside of the range we’ve provided.
|Forklift Type||Capacity||Auction / Trade||As-Is||Retail|
|Sit-Down (IC) Cushion||4,000 lbs – 5,000 lbs||$1,500 – $3,500||$4,500 – $7,500||$7,500 – $11,500|
|Sit-Down (IC) Cushion||5,000 lbs – 6,000 lbs||$1,500 – $3,500||$4,500 – $7,500||$8,500 – $12,500|
|Sit-Down (IC) Cushion||6,000 lbs – 6,500 lbs||$2,500 – $5,500||$5,500 – $8,500||$8,500 – $16,500|
|Sit-Down (IC) Pneumatic||5,000 lbs – 6,000 lbs||$4,500 – $14,500||$7,000 – $15,000||$12,500 – $24,500|
|Sit-Down (IC) Pneumatic||6,000 lbs – 6,500 lbs||$4,500 – $14,500||$7,500 – $16,000||$15,000 – $28,000|
Know the Seller
Knowing who you’re buying from can be important in determining the legitimacy and the quality of information you get regarding the forklift for sale. Equipment dealers likely have the most general forklift knowledge and may also have specific service history knowledge of the equipment in question. Wholesalers or individuals typically don’t have the same level of knowledge regarding the machines operational capabilities or it’s unique service or application history.
Additionally many equipment dealers, like Lift Truck Supply, perform routine maintenance and in some cases completely recondition the forklift prior to sale. While this may mean spending more on your initial investment, it also means that your risk for buying a “lemon” is greatly reduced.
Questions to Ask
Don’t limit yourself to these questions, but getting answers to the list below will go a long way in determining if the forklift you’re purchasing will perform well for your needs.
How many hours are on this machine and what type of application did it work in?
A forklift’s operating hours are a good indication of how often the equipment was used. Combine hours with the type of application and year model, and you can get a good idea if the machine was used sparingly in a light duty environment, or if it was run hard in a harsh environment. Obviously, a lower run frequency in a light duty application creates less wear and tear on equipment.
Do you have the service history of this forklift?
If you’re purchasing from the original owner or from a forklift dealer, there is a very good chance they’ll have the service history of the equipment. The service history can be a wealth of information, not only to see if the forklift was properly maintained, but also to see if that particular piece of equipment had any reoccurring issues or operator inflicted damage. While typically more expensive, forklifts that were covered by full maintenance programs are in better operational condition and will outperform equipment that has not been properly maintained.
Were there any recalls or campaigns issued for this piece of equipment and if so, have those repairs been completed?
Recalls are government mandated repairs for faulty parts or poorly engineered equipment. Warranty campaigns are typically issued by reputable manufacturers when they discover a poorly manufactured part or an engineering design flaw. Knowing these potential performance issues, and if manufacturer recommended repairs have been completed can give you piece of mind that the machine has been well maintained.
Potential Problem Areas
When evaluating a forklift it’s a good idea to start with common problem areas or areas that could be expensive to repair. We also recommend bringing your own mechanic if you have access to one; it can help determine the overall potential of the machine.
Cab & General Operations
Hop in the seat and fasten the seatbelt. Check to make sure the seat is securely attached and evaluate the condition of the seatbelt. Next, start the forklift and note any odd noises coming from the engine. Inspect the hydraulic levers – lift and lower the loader arms, tilt the mast in both directions, and side shift the arms left and right. Make sure that as you manipulate the loader arms and raise/lower the mast that the machine operates smoothly. Drive the forklift both forwards and reverse and in a figure eight pattern. Stop and start to test responsiveness of steering and braking. Operate all other controls and safety devices, including back-up alarm, flood lights, and horn. Check the data plate to make sure the equipment meets your operational requirements.
Try to run the forklift for about ten minutes – utilizing all functions. This allows you to get a feel for the general operation of the machine and may highlight problem areas but it also gets the fluids warmed up and moving, creating pressure in the lines. After the machine has been warmed up, begin your visual inspection – any hydraulic or other fluid leaks will now be more apparent.
Forks & Mast
Start your visual inspection with the forks and the mast. Inspect the forks for cracks, bends, and warping – this can be caused by overloading or excessive wear. Minor distortions may be repairable but any cracks can compromise the integrity of the equipment when lifting at full capacity. Be sure to check the thickness of the fork heels, they should closely match the thickness of the fork shank (portion where fork attaches to hanger). When inspecting the mast look for cracks or welds, and then verify that mast pins, tilt / side-shift cylinder are secure. Check the cylinders for signs of leaks or damage.
Mast Rails, Lift Chains, & Cylinders
Moving from the forks, check the mast rails for signs of cracks or welds that may weaken the mast. Excessive wear on the mast rollers may warp or compress them into ovals rather than their intended circular shape. Inspect the lift chains, look for damaged or missing links or anchor pins. Check your hydraulic hoses for any leaks and then verify that the hoses and lift chains have equal tension. Scrutinize the tilt cylinders, checking for leaks, signs of damage, loose or missing bolts.
Frame, Cowling, & Canopy
Do a walk around the forklift and study the body for collisions or other signs of damage. Run your hands along the main canopy supports – feeling for bends or impacts that may compromise the canopy’s ability to protect operators from falling objects or rollover. In the event of an enclosed cab, check for missing or damaged windows. Inspect the chassis, are there signs of cracks, modifications, or repairs? Tires should not be worn past the top of the lettering. Cracked rubber or missing chunks may be indicative of application environment or improper maintenance. Check wheels for missing or damaged lug nuts.
Engine Compartment, Exhaust Guard, & Counterweights
Open the engine compartment and check for any leaks, dirt buildup or cracks on hoses. Check the oil, note the level of the oil on the dipstick, and also look at the condition of the oil. Check that belts are tight and not worn or cracked. Inspect the air filter and make sure it is clean. If you are inspecting an electric forklift, check that all battery connections are in good condition. If the machine is propane-powered, check integrity of tank brackets and bolts once you’ve finished your engine compartment inspection. Move to the rear of the forklift and look at the exhaust guard, noting any damage. Also check that the counterweight bolts are securely in place.
Batteries & Chargers
It should go without saying but if you’re looking at an electric forklift, be sure to inspect the battery. Is there any corrosion or acid leaking? Open up some of the cells and see if the battery has sufficient water. If you’re working with a dealership have them run a load test on the battery. Ask if a charger is included and if so, check to make sure it’s in working order. Ask if the charger is single or three-phase; that may mean additional costs if your facility isn’t wired properly. Verify that the battery is the right size and weight for your lift by checking the data plate. A battery that is too light can lower lifting capacity.
How Will You Service Your New Lift
While it may not be top of your list when selecting a used forklift, where you will service your forklift after your purchase, should be considered. Even if you plan on maintaining the lift yourself, there’s a good probability that at some point in the future it will need the attention of a forklift service provider. Identifying someone or a company that has all the necessary equipment, training, personnel, and reputation to handle the job may influence the brand or type of equipment you purchase.
Parts Availability for Used Forklifts
When buying used equipment it’s important to take into account how long you plan to use the equipment, and how easy it will be to find replacement parts now, and in the future. Your local forklift dealership should be able to tell you how easy it is to order parts for a particular unit and how often parts go obsolete for particular brands.
Additionally, some forklift manufacturers are notoriously difficult to get parts for, whether the lift is new or used. It’s a good idea to verify with your preferred forklift dealership that they can get the parts quickly should the need arise.
Don’t Be in a Hurry
Start your search process early and don’t fall into the trap of making a quick forklift purchase to meet production needs. Quick purchases usually lead to higher prices and sacrifices regarding your needs. Due diligence will be handsomely rewarded with a quality forklift that meets your needs and your budget.
Accessories That Get You The Most From Your Pallet Racks
With the large variety of accessories available for pallet racks today your pallet racks can be customized to make sure they work the best for you. This article will cover a few common accessories that are used to increase the value of your pallet rack investment.
This is a very common pallet rack accessory that is made of different gauge steel rods welded into a mesh pattern. They are made for secondary support that cover the beams that your pallets will rest on. The front and rear beams should still be the primary source of support but the wire decking can increase how much weight can be stored on each rack. A wire deck is typically designed to hold anywhere from 2,500 to 3,000 lbs.
Row Spacers and Wall Ties
Row spacers are designed to increase the stability of your pallet rack. A row spacer can tie together two rows of pallet racks that are back-to-back and they are placed about 6 inches from the top and bottom of the rack. If you have long rows of pallet racks these are essential for tying them together
Wall ties can increase the stability of your pallet rack by tying the pallet rack upright to your warehouse wall or most other solid structures in your warehouse to reduce swaying or tipping of pallet racks.
A column protector, also called post protectors or upright protectors, can be used to protect your pallet racks from being damaged by forklifts. When your pallet rack upright takes damage over time the frame can become weak and eventually collapse. This accessory is designed to prevent that and help to save you money.
TYLER, TX – Lift Truck Supply, Inc., a single source forklift and material handling solutions provider servicing central and east Texas, announced a large investment in technology designed to streamline its forklift service operations and improve customer communication.
“We’re simply trying to build a better mousetrap. Technology has allowed us to streamline some of our operations, which means quicker and more efficient service for our customers – and that was the driving force. Our customers demand a service that meets their needs and that’s what we plan to deliver. It’s about making our customer’s job a little bit easier ” said Jimmy Head – General Manager at Lift Truck Supply, Inc.
Some of the new technology that customers may notice are:
PAPERLESS WORK-ORDERS & INVOICING
25+ tablet devices with cloud based dispatch and work-order functionality have been issued to field technicians across central and east Texas. Work orders and invoices can be completed and emailed within minutes of work being completed – streamlining billing and reducing lost documentation.
SHOP REPAIR EMAIL STATUS UPDATES
Walter Flora the company’s General Service Manager said, “In this industry, sending your forklift to someone’s shop was like watching it be swallowed by a black-hole. You didn’t know the status of diagnostics, parts, or repair. With our My Truck Status email program customers are now kept up-to-date on arrival, diagnostics, quotes, parts availability, repair status, and delivery.”
MOBILE SERVICE MANUAL LIBRARY
Over 30 gigabytes of service manuals and electrical diagrams from all major brands are available to our field technicians making diagnostics and repairs quicker – meaning less downtime and more productivity. With the tablets this information can be made available in short order.
E-COMMERCE & ONLINE BILL PAY
The LTS forklift accessory website now provides customers with the ability to purchase forklift safety and accessory items and will very soon allow customers to pay outstanding invoices via credit card directly on the secure LTS site.
ONLINE FORKLIFT APPRAISAL SUBMISSIONS
Owners of used forklifts can now submit equipment information, a few photos, and their contact information and receive multiple quotes regarding the appraised forklift trade-in value within two standard business days.
STILL IN THE WORKS…
Mobile account log-in with service and parts purchase history
Cloud-based fleet management reporting
LTS mobile app to request expedited service, order parts, bill pay, and fleet metrics
Craig Murphy, who founded Lift Truck Supply, Inc. in 1982, said “We’re really excited about the direction we’re heading. To our knowledge, no other dealership in the industry is innovating like LTS. The fact that it’s coming out of a rural area like Tyler versus a metroplex is a testament to our philosophy of kaizen – continuous improvement. And, we’re doing it from a customer centric point of reference – so, the real winners are our customers.”
About Lift Truck Supply, Inc. – Founded in 1982, Lift Truck Supply, Inc. is the oldest Toyota Forklift dealer in Texas. As a turn-key material handling partner, LTS provides service, parts, equipment, consulting, and other warehouse solutions for downstream supply chain and logistics operations or divisions.
Choosing The Right Warehouse Racking For You
For warehouses that need every process to be as efficient as possible, storage can be a very important part of maximizing that efficiency. Pallet racks can play a major role in helping to increase your efficiency in many ways, however picking the right pallet rack for your needs is key to achieving your goal of maximized efficiency. Different choices in pallet racks will affect the density of your storage and how easy it is to get to your products. It is important to make sure the pallet rack that you use provides you maximum space while still allowing you to manage your inventory in the best way for what your company does.
There are also many different reasons that someone might choose to use rack storage. For companies with low-volume items it makes sense to use rack storage over floor storage because of the amount of time that you have to store the items. It is better to keep these items stored on a rack than in the floor to keep space open and work conditions safe for those in the warehouse. Using rack storage can also help to keep your products safer than if they are stored on the floor. Products stored on shelves are exposed to less harmful conditions than those left on the floor. Storage racks can even help the way that your inventory flows. Keeping your products organized on racks makes those products easier to find and keeps your inventory moving in and out at a faster pace. The following pallet rack types each have their own advantages and disadvantages from inventory management to making the most out of your storage space.
Using a single-select pallet rack allows you to store one pallet for every location on that rack. This type of rack is excellent for being able to select exactly what you need when you need it and it can be used to store many varieties of sizes and pallet loads. This rack can also store products that are stored together in quantities of three pallets or less. The downside to using a single-select rack however is that this type of rack allows for the least dense type of storage meaning that you will save the least amount of space by using it. If you have items that need to be accessed fast and easily then this is the rack for you as long as space is not one of your top priorities.
2) Double Deep
This type of rack can store pallets up to six deep allowing for double the amount of storage per product than single-select racks. Double deep pallet racks do save more space than single-selects, however it is not as simple to get to products that you may need. Another down side with using double deep pallet racks is that you need an articulated forklift to make sure your getting the most out of your pallet rack, otherwise reaching some pallets can become problematic.
A push-back pallet rack is a good balance of storage space and easy access to your products. This rack, which can hold up to five pallets deep per product, is loaded from the front and each pallet loaded after the first pushes everything behind it back until it is full. This allows for dense storage while not cutting off access to your product. One setback for this rack however is that you will need to have a forklift that is powerful enough to push back every pallet that is in the rack behind the one you are loading.
A pallet-flow rack is a rack that is slightly inclined down allowing products to slide down the incline when loaded from the back. This is great for storing products that are moved on a FIFO (First in first out) basis because it allows products that are loaded first to be moved to the front of the rack making them the most accessible item. Pallet-flow racks are also great for dense storage of products but they do not offer as flexible storage as the selective racks because the different layers of a flow rack usually need to be separated by each individual product.
Drive-in racks provide the densest storage of all the racks that have been listed and are used for LIFO (Last in first out) inventory management, which is the opposite type of inventory management that pallet-flow racks used. This is because the forklift drives the pallet in and places it in the back of the rack starting with the top rack so when the rack is full the first pallet placed is the last one that can be removed. This pallet rack allows you to store a large quantity of pallets in each bay but is best used for storing a large quantity of the same product that is set to be moved all at once. By using this type of rack you will sacrifice selectivity because the first pallet stored cannot be removed until every pallet before it is removed and the rack holds a large quantity of pallets.
Source: MHI Career & Technical Information
About the Author:
Weston Rogers is a GLA (Global Logistics Associate) certified Warehouse and Distribution specialist for Lift Truck Supply, Inc. located in Temple, Texas. With a background in downstream warehouse equipment and storage solutions he brings invaluable knowledge to his clients in central Texas.
5 Forklift Safety Tips That Reduce Costs
Every company is looking to reduce costs while keeping employees as efficient as possible. While there are many ways to do this, the most beneficial to employer and employee alike is investing in safety equipment, procedures, and training. Workplaces that implement safety and health management systems are able to reduce costs by up to 40% by minimizing risks of workplace injuries to employees and equipment. The following five tips will walk you through the basics of how to do it.
Hiring and Training the Right Employees is Very Important
Managers have to find the employees that are the right fit for the job, but when it comes to finding employees that are the right fit for a forklift, it can be more complicated. There are many different skills and qualifications an employee needs to correctly operate your lifts. And, making sure you choose the right employee to do so is important to creating a safe work environment for all employees. Because lift trucks are available in different equipment classes not every employee is fit to operate every lift. The right candidate needs to be hired and assigned to the job that best fits their experience and abilities.
Hiring the right employee is only the first step, however. After you’ve found the employee that is best qualified and suited to your company’s needs there is still work to be done. In order to create the safest work environment possible for employees, every new forklift operator needs to be sufficiently and extensively trained before being on their own with your equipment. This is not only for their safety, but for the safety of everyone around them. Failure to do this cannot only create an unsafe environment for your employees, but can also have a negative effect on the overall efficiency of the company.
According to the National Safety Council, 70% of lift truck accidents are caused by operator error.
Effective forklift training methods for your employees can help to cut accidents by 25% to 30% according to MHL News. This is done by reducing equipment damage, equipment downtime, and damage to your products.
An important part of training employees is the methods you use for training. While training employees in the classroom with videos and other physical materials is important, you must also allow your employees hands on training with other experienced forklift operators that can mentor them throughout the process. This can also encourage questions from your new employees to further involve them in the training and give them a better understanding of safety procedures – increasing their chances of being a successful and safe forklift operator.
It’s also important to make sure you train employees based on the conditions they will be working in. Employees cannot be given a standardized training program, but instead need to be taught with specific training methods that relate to the exact job they will be doing and the conditions they will be working in.
Don’t Forget About Maintenance
Safety is not solely based on the operation of the equipment being used. Equipment that is not properly maintained creates a work environment that is unsafe and can reduce the efficiency with which tasks can be completed. Something as simple as an oil leak can cause downtime for your equipment. If that equipment is not properly maintained that oil leak can lead to other issues before the leak is fixed causing you to have equipment downtime as well as any other delays caused by a failure to deal with the leak – such as employees slipping in the oil. Making sure that you use some kind of preventive maintenance (PM) program for your equipment is the best way to ensure this kind of issue is taken care of before it can cause additional damage.
Maintenance doesn’t only cut costs by reducing downtime, it also reduces the costs of fines being incurred by your company. OSHA requires that lifts be inspected and maintained daily. Failure to do so can cost up to $70,000 for repeat violations. These kinds of fines can have a severe impact on the financial state of your company. Using PM programs offered by lift truck dealers can help to avoid these kinds of penalties and allow you to focus on the performance of your company.
Monitor Your Equipment Closely
With modern technology it is now easier than ever to keep a close eye on your lifts. Now you cannot only monitor your equipment, but your maintenance programs as well. Remote data monitoring about critical maintenance and other metrics regarding your fleet can be available to you at any time. Sensors can be applied to your lifts that will give you important information such as fault codes, notifications about upcoming PM’s, and even hazardous driving.
Monitoring software may also be used to observe different metrics involving the use of your lifts. These metrics can tell you the cost efficiency of your lift or even tell you if you’re spending too much time or money on one lift in particular. Most importantly monitoring your equipment is a great way to stay informed about the needs of your lifts to prevent accidents caused by technical issues before they happen.
Keep Your Operators in Control
A great way to keep employees safe when operating lifts is to keep the operators comfortable and in control of their movement. Ergonomic accessories are great at keeping the operator comfortable and removing the likelihood that your operator is fatigued, making them aware of their surroundings.
These work conditions facilitate higher productivity due to increased awareness and comfort while operating lifts. In recent years many great advancements in ergonomic features for forklift operators, designed to keep them alert and productive when operating equipment, have been produced. Some ergonomic features that help keep a safe work environment suggested by MHL News include:
- Adjustable armrests
- Adjustable steering columns with programmable tilt memory
- Fingertip controls for easy accessibility
- Electric power steering for reducing road shock through the steering wheel/tiller
- Padded compartments for added comfort
- Flexible control and support surfaces so operators can adjust the most comfortable position
Safety Programs Save You Money
Safety programs are beneficial to everyone at your company. Investing in a safety program can help employees by creating safer working conditions that help to avoid injuries as well as OSHA fines. These programs can also help financially by increasing productivity thanks to lowered downtime of equipment and better knowledge of how to operate lifts leading to an increase in productivity from employees involved in the program. Implementing a safety program can allow your employees to stay up to date on how to best operate the equipment they use everyday creating a much lower need to train new employees due to old employees leaving because of unsafe work conditions or being injured and requiring time off to recover.
Pak-Sher Belight Solution
The Belight from Jamas Enterprises was designed to meet the lighting needs in warehouses for employees that are loading and unloading trucks in low lighting conditions. It can be installed to fit any working condition with the option to be cored in, off-set on an existing bollard, or secured using a base plate so that it is never in your way when being used.
The loading dock light also has an optional auto on/off switch that will switch on or off based on when you’re door opens or closes to help save on energy costs. This can also add safety for your employees and equipment when being used thanks to the light being concealed in the bollard, reducing costs of damage to forklifts, loading docks, and lights.
This light is almost indestructible with an LED light installed in a heavy gauge steel bollard – making this durable lighting solution the perfect fit for Pak-Sher, a manufacturer in Kilgore, Texas.
Pak-Sher was experiencing damage to their forklifts, docks, and product packaging due to low lighting in their loading areas. With the Belights installed to add extra light the amount of damage done to their docks during loading and unloading times was greatly reduced. The extra light also helped to increase productivity by helping the workers get more light while loading and unloading their products.
Overall the installation of these lights was an efficient way to prevent unnecessary damage to both equipment and products for Pak-Sher and the Belights have helped to add efficiency for Pak-Sher employees working to load and unload their products.
Belight Inquiry Request
FORKLIFT PURCHASES – DEDUCT THE FULL PURCHASE AMOUNT – SECTION 179
“Protecting Americans from Tax Hikes Act of 2015” was passed by Congress and the House and signed by President Obama on December 18, 2015. This act expands the Section 179 deduction limit to $500,000.
What is the Section 179 Deduction?
Section 179 of the IRS tax code gives businesses the opportunity to deduct the full purchase price of forklifts and other qualifying business equipment purchased or financed during the tax year. The Section 179 Deduction is aimed primarily at small and mid-sized businesses.
What does Section 179 Do?
Typically, businesses write off equipment in stages through the depreciation cycle. The Section 179 Deduction facilitates the write off of the entire purchase amount up to $500,000 once the Protecting Americans from Tax Hikes Act of 2015 is officially signed into law.
(Note: This is for example purposes only – see this section 179 tax deduction calculator to estimate your savings)
|Purchase Price of New Forklift Fleet||$300,000|
|Section 179 Deduction||$300,000|
|Bonus Depreciation Deduction (50% of the difference between purchase price and Section 179 Deduction proposed this tax year)||$0|
|Total 1st Year Deduction||$300,000|
|Cash Savings (Deduction x Tax Rate (35%))||$105,000|
|Forklifts Cost After Tax||$195,000|
Is There a Deadline?
Yes! To take advantage of Section 179 for tax year 2017, qualifying equipment must be purchased or financed AND put into service before midnight on December 31, 2017.
Does all Toyota Forklift Equipment Qualify?
The IRS allows for Section 179 depreciation on tangible property, including forklifts, used in a business or income-producing activity. Your customers should see IRS Pub. 946 for more information and restrictions, and consult a tax advisor.
For more information, visit www.section179.org. Consult your tax professional for additional details.