How to safely clean forklift trucks

How to safely clean forklift trucks

14/08/2019 / 209 / Forklift Care, News, Uncategorized
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Keeping forklifts clean helps them work efficiently and prevents breakdowns

Like any machine, forklift trucks need on-going maintenance to keep them running. If dirt, grime, rust and debris is left to build up, it can cause issues that may lead to breakdowns and part replacements.

Every used forklift truck we supply is thoroughly checked by our engineers. This involves cleaning the vehicles and making sure they are free from dirt that could contribute to the overall wear and tear.

It’s easy enough to keep your forklift trucks clean. Investing in the right equipment makes things easier, as does assigning particular members of your team to implement a cleaning rota. It may not be the most exciting task, but it’s crucial in increasing the longevity of your trucks and therefore shouldn’t be avoided.

Not sure of the best way to safely and effectively clean forklift trucks? Follow this step-by-step advice:

1. Set up for safety

Cleaning a forklift may not pose the same risks as operating one, but caution should still be applied. Make sure your forklift is parked outdoors, free from obstruction and has been positioned somewhere that water spray isn’t going to create a hazard.

You should also wear appropriate clothing to carry out the job, including:

  • Non-slip shoes
  • Protective goggles or a helmet with eye protection
  • Strong gloves

During cleaning, rust or debris may be thrown from the vehicle. It’s important to protect your hands, head and eyes from damage.

2. Start by removing loose dirt, rust or paintwork

Using either your hands (with gloves) or a brush, scrape away any loose bits of rust, paintwork or large clumps of dirt and dispose of them.

3. Pressure wash away the mess

Pressure washing is the best way to clean most forklift trucks as it’s fast and highly effective. However, it’s not advisable to use a water pressure washer on most electric vehicles due to the risk to internal components.

Air pressure washers can be used for electric forklifts and any tough dirt can be removed afterwards with a soapy sponge by hand. These washers are also useful when your forklift is covered in the residue of water-reactive materials, such as plaster or concrete mix.

4. Wiping down dirt and grime

Depending on how dirty your forklift is, you may want to wipe down your windscreens and doors with glass wash. Make sure you clean inside the cabin too. The more regularly your forklifts are checked for loose particles and debris, the lower the chance of anything creeping into the mechanics.

5. Making sure the mechanics are squeaky clean

Proper vehicle maintenance also involves keeping the interior mechanics of your truck clean and in good working order. This is something that requires an engineer’s knowledge to carry out safely, so should only be done by somebody who’s experienced in this area.

However, if you annually service your trucks, this should be taken care of. Any debris will be removed and the components will be wiped down, if necessary, making sure your vehicles engines are clean and ready to serve you well for another year.

We hope you’ve found this forklift cleaning guide useful. Are you a Yorkshire based company who’d like to arrange forklift servicing for your site? You can do so by getting in touch with our team. Alternatively, you can view our full range of forklifts for sale and forklifts for hire.  

Contact our friendly team for advice.

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