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Updated by Marti Gardner on Mar 25, 2016
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Top Forklift Maintenance Tips – Caring for Your Heavy Machinery

It is often acknowledged and widely accepted that if we paid the same attention to heavy machinery that we pay to our BMW's we would spend far less as maintenance expenses.


The Basics

The reason forklift maintenance is extremely vital is due to the increased probability of accidents if same is not done. The crew assigned to handle heavy machinery should be properly educated on preventive maintenance, taking precautions and being vigilant about the safety standards of the equipment in their charge. The crew should ensure their own personal safety when attending to the forklift as well. For instance, a clean, spacious and level ground should be used for forklift servicing to avoid any mishaps.


The Condition of Tires

Each forklift manufacturer would advise the size, level of pressure and other attributes required for the tires that are affixed to the forklift. It is the responsibility of the crew to ensure that these requirements are complied with and to regularly check the condition of the industrial tires as the wear and tear are high. Replacements should be done cautiously as per the stipulated requirements and high-quality tires such as those by GRI tires should be chosen to avoid premature replacements. Whenever forklifts take turns, especially when burdened by a large weight on the forks there could be hazardous consequences if the tires are not in a usable state.


The Condition of Forks

After each job, one of the main responsibilities of the operator is to screen the forks and be assured that they are not dented or damaged. If there are any damages, the operator should not take on any further assignments until the required repairs or replacements are done. With continuous loading and unloading paint scratches and discolouration are inevitable; therefore, attentive scrutinizing is required to identify slight twists or chips that can affect performance.


Prevent Overloading

There is a load that can be carried by each forklift and comes with the manufacturer's specifications. It is never advisable for these limits to be breached. The operator should be well versed in the facts and figures pertaining to the forklift she or he operates. When goods are being loaded onto the forklift, the operator should personally pay attention to the weight of the goods and disallow excessive loading.


Cleaning Grease Fittings

Certain components of the forklift need to be kept well greased to reduce friction and the possibility of rusting. These greasy areas are more probable to acquire and retain dirt particles which could corrode the forklift and impede its performance. Therefore, just as much as it is important to keep the components lubricated it is also essential their cleanliness is looked into.



Whenever a forklift is not in use it should be parked in a dry shade, where it will not be affected by the rain or scorching sun. The machine should not be abandoned for lengthy periods of time. Even if its services are not required, it should be driven out, oiled and the battery should be checked and charged. This will ensure that the machine is always in working condition.