How to avoid doing long-term damage to your forklifts

When forklifts are an essential part of your business’ operations, you can’t afford for them to break down. While vehicles from leading manufacturers like Nexen, Caterpillar, Yale and Samuk are all incredibly durable, heavy and incorrect usage can lead to all sorts of problems.

We chatted to Moorgate’s team of engineers about some of the most common ways forklift misuse can lead to damage – and how to avoid them.


forklift-engineerOverloading your forklifts causes long-term strain – and is dangerous

It goes without saying that exceeding maximum vehicle loads is a health and safety risk, but it also has a long-term impact on your vehicle’s mechanics too.

Overloading your forklift places strain on everything, from the tyres and steering to the breaks and lift mechanism. It’s this unnecessary strain that can cause faults such as low hydraulic fluid, worn steering gears and overheated engines.

It may be tempting to add to your load sizes to get jobs done more quickly but think about the time (and money) that’s wasted when this then results in your vehicles breaking down because they’ve been overused. If you’re struggling with your current capacity, perhaps you might want to consider upsizing to a newer, larger model?


Never use your forklift to drag, push or pry objects apart

Forklifts are made for lifting. Using your forklift vehicles for anything other than this will result in pressure that, at best, will cause long-term damage and at worst, could result in a fault or injury.

Pushing or dragging heavy objects generates friction that can cause heat damage and wear down the heel or undercarriage of your forklift.

Equally, using your forklift truck to pry apart objects is a) dangerous and b) can result in bent, cracked or warped forks. This type of damage is serious as it can impact the stability of your whole vehicle.

Ultimately, avoiding misuse of any kind will prevent unnecessary breakdowns. Combine this with on-going maintenance and routine repairs, and you will help your vehicles to really go the distance.

It’s true that correctly operated vehicles stay in better working order, but no vehicle is immune to daily wear and tear. Having a regular forklift service helps you to catch any issues before they develop into larger problems, as well as ensuring all your vehicles are performing at peak efficiency.

If you think any of your forklifts may be due a service, call us on 0113 393 2881 or email