A small business can benefit enormously from a forklift and, if you are replacing an older model or embarking on buying one for the first time, it’s important to see what’s around and make sure you invest in a top quality forklift that matches your needs.
Your forklift is potentially the hardest working piece of equipment in your operation and without it you may not be able to maintain an efficient business operation. Over recent years the forklift industry has evolved from only supplying a diesel-powered workhorse to a whole range of products that can deliver more horsepower in a variety of work environments. And, most importantly, meet the safety requirements of the modern workplace.
Choosing the right piece of equipment begins by looking at the jobs you need your forklift to perform. Listed below are some factors to consider.
- Fuel efficiency: Electric forklifts are fuel efficient. The downside is that initial costs can run 20% to 40% higher than internal combustion lifts. However, gas and diesel are no longer the only internal combustion options as LPG forklifts can also have fuel efficiency benefits.
- Forklift servicing: Your forklift supplier offers maintenance and servicing. Full maintenance covers breakdowns and repairs, preventive maintenance covers oil and filter changes, transmission servicing and general maintenance.
- Load capacities: Modern forklifts are capable of lifting heavier loads than before. Lifting capacity various depending on your business and the type of forklift you buy.
- Noise and air quality: Electric and dual LPG/CNG forklifts have improved air quality for inside use. Instead of coping with exhaust fumes you can now have zero or low emissions from alternative fuel forklifts. Noise pollution from these forklifts is hugely improved over traditional internal combustion models.
- Affordability: If you don’t have the capital to buy a new forklift outright, look at quality used forklifts or talk to your dealer about leasing and financing options. For a many small businesses, leases are the preferred as they reduce the upfront cost of new equipment.