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    Forklift Care & Maintenance – Forklift Services

    03 Aug

    If you have ever worked in a warehouse, you are probably aware of how invaluable forklifts are. Forklifts are revolutionary in how they have impacted the warehouse and their contributions to carrying and transporting heavy loads. 

    Although durable, efficient machines, forklifts require special care and regular servicing to perform to the best of their ability. Not only does their performance rely on maintenance, but also their longevity. Regular forklift maintenance allows your machine to keep doing its job and keep your operation running smoothly. If a forklift goes down, productivity will decrease drastically. This is why it is crucial to keep up with daily, monthly, and annual maintenance to ensure that the forklifts you rely so heavily on are ready to go for as long as possible.

    In this article, we will cover forklift care tips, everyday issues that forklifts face, how often your forklift should be serviced and what specifically needs to be serviced. We will talk about some general forklift housekeeping tips to make sure you are taking care of your machine and getting the most out of it in return. Be sure to visit Waverley Forklifts for all your forklift needs. For over 50 years, we’ve specialised in all things forklifts and are experts in forklift care and maintenance.

    Common Issues with Forklifts

    Because forklifts are vehicles, there are common mechanical issues that tend to occur. Some issues to look out for are hydraulic leaks, issues with the lift, the engine not starting, battery-related issues, electrical problems, and cooling problems. Fortunately, these are all issues that can be resolved, and we will walk you through what they are and how to deal with them should they occur.

    Hydraulic Leaks

    Forklifts rely on several components in their cooling, drivetrain, and hydraulic systems to help them operate. These include clamps, hoses, and o-rings. These components are under constant stress, leading to leaks over time. This is why it is important to check for wear and leaks routinely.

    Lift Problems

    Issues with the lift rising or lowering are signs of a problem with the hydraulic system. If the hydraulic system is malfunctioning, it could be the cylinder leaking or a defective oil filter and oil seals. 

    The frame and lifting mechanism of a forklift is known as the mast. If the mast fails, the forks will not be able to raise or lower. This can happen due to faulty or broken wires, switches, hydraulic pump failure, battery issues, or fuel system issues. To fix this issue or prevent it from happening, maintain the battery properly, clean the fuel system, and replace exposed or faulty wires.

    Engines Not Starting

    Your forklift suddenly not starting is not too uncommon of an issue. This is usually the result of a dead battery or a bad starter, which are simple fixes. More complex reasons a forklift won’t start include a leak, a block in the fuel system, or broken wires. It is best to clean your battery terminals and fuel system to prevent this issue from happening.

    Battery Problems

    Every forklift has a battery, whether it is an electric forklift or an internal combustion forklift. Battery problems are usually the result of a dead battery, bad alternator, or damaged connector. Checking these components will usually lead you to the root of the problem.

    Electrical Problems

    Electrical problems can range from corrosion, lousy wiring, blown fuses, or malfunctioning switches. By keeping all the electrical components clean and dry and tidying up exposed wires, you can prevent these problems until it is time to replace them.

    Safety accessories like alarms, horns, and lights can also be damaged while the forklift is being operated. You can prevent these issues by replacing lightbulbs, greasing them with dielectric grease, and cleaning electrical contacts.

    Cooling Problems

    A functioning cooling system can help protect your equipment against excessive heat. Issues with cooling stem from bad radiators, thermostats, broken water pumps, and broken or loose hoses and clamps. By regularly cleaning around the cooling system components, this issue should be easily maintained until it is time to replace a radiator, thermostat, or water pump.

    How often do you service your Forklift? 

    Servicing your forklift is crucial in extending the vehicle’s life. As a general rule, we recommend servicing your forklifts every six months. You can also service at the 500-hour mark, or whichever comes first. 

    Regularly scheduled service intervals will keep your forklift running and operating efficiently. It is also important to note that if your forklift is usually used or stored outdoors, it deals with more exposure to the elements, and more frequent service may be needed. 

    Daily Maintenance & Care

    Forklift operators should perform daily maintenance at the beginning of each shift. The forklift should be inspected for visual damage, leaks, safety lights and accessories, steering, and brakes. The mast and oil, fuel, water, and hydraulic fluid levels should also be examined.

    General Forklift Care Tips

    Keep your forklift Clean

    Always clean with water. Keeping the forklift clean is the first step in maintaining your equipment. When your forklift is clean, it is easier to notice wear and parts that have become defective.

    Talk to your forklift drivers

    Maintaining regular communication with forklift operators is essential so they can inform you if the forklift needs servicing. They will be the first to know if the forklift isn’t working properly.

    Don’t wait to fix issues

    You will save productivity and money by not waiting until something breaks to fix an issue. Many parts will show signs before they break down completely, and it is best to replace parts once these signs arise.

    Get assistance with Forklift Maintenance Today

    Forklifts play a significant role in the daily lives of Australians, whether they realise it or not. So much depends on functioning forklifts. If your forklifts need servicing, we can help. For more information about our services, browse the Waverley Forklifts Service page and contact us today.

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