When choosing a pre-owned forklift, many buyers be worried about getting tied to a lemon. It’s unfamiliar territory, nearly everyone knows what to consider in a car, but have you considered a forklift? It’s a pricey purchase that you should be reliable for a long time. This is a basic checklist you must seek out when looking for a second hand forklift.
You should be aware: This post covers physical inspection of used forklift. For information on choosing a forklift size and kind, please see this post.
It used to be a chore, needing to drive in one factory to another (often widely spaced in various suburbs). Now naturally we have now the world wide web to help you. Most forklift sellers currently have a web site (exactly like this!), and having the capability to see upfront what sort of units can be found is actually a massive way to save time. When checking websites, it’s still smart to ring the retailer and view that we now have no unlisted forklifts, often we sell forklifts prior to they can be listed on the site.
When checking forklifts online it can be difficult to view details but you want to look for the following:
No obvious impact damage (scrapes and scratches are ok)
Minimal or no rust
Tyres that aren’t worn-out
Since you now have selected a couple of retailers or units to look at, make and appointment and go take a look. This is where you can really obtain a good check out the used forklift involved. If you are shopping with a low budget in your mind, you should make allowances for any unit that may not meet all of these criteria, but search for any problems and get the salesman specifically if they can be fixed prior to purchase, especially stuff that might become a safety hazard or stop the system from working.
Please understand that this can be a guide only, and depending on the age and cost of the unit, you may have to compromise. What is important is usually to A:Get good good value and B:Have a reliable forklift
Look for new paint or paint in good condition, preferably with decals (better resale value) and warning stickers (for operator safety). Scratching and scrapes are ok, extensive rust, overspray from bad repainting and big dints usually are not. Check plastics (if any) for cracks or splits.
Open the bonnet and begin the engine. It will start easily and idle smoothly (it will probably be more noisy compared to a car). Look above and below for engine (black) oil leaks. Check starter motor fires rapidly. Rev engine hard in neutral and check tailpipe once warm for blue or black smoke. Exhaust ought to be minimal if LPG, and clear of excessive odour.
Raise Carriage to full height (move forklift outdoors if needed). Check lifting speed is steady and constant. Rev engine to increase lift speed then run in idle to ensure it is constantly raise. Tilt back and forward at full extension, engine should never stall. Shims in tilt mechanism should not move too much, carriage ought not to be sloppy. Drop down, movement ought to be smooth and steady, all stages should move around in turn without having jamming.
Check all visible hoses for leaks. Look within the forklift for greenish or golden hydraulic oil. Move mast to full tilt and appearance for leaks again while under pressure. Levers should move easily and operation must be smooth for all those controls. For hydraulic drive forklifts (Linde), drive back and forward, operation should be quick and smooth.
Drive the used forklift around in the tight circle, backwards and forwards. Use brake, inch and accelerator to full extension, check seating position and controls can be found.
Seat and Lights
Seat ought to be free of large rips and tears. Seatbelt (if component of original equipment), ought to be functional. Flashing light on roof ought to be working, other lights if fitted should be working but are not essential unless road use is required. Engaging reverse should trigger beeper or buzzer
All tyres should be evenly worn, with sufficient usage left to them. Solid and cushion tyres needs to be totally free of major tears and damage, Solid tyres needs to have tread. Pneumatic tyres needs to have adequate air pressure
Diesel/Petrol: Check under tank for cracks. Examine fuel cap area for damage. Check fuel lines.
LPG: Examine tank connector for damage. Make sure that seals work, no smell our sound should are derived from pipe. Check pipe for abrasions or marks. Check tank clips for damage, insert and take off tank to make sure it is held firmly.
Tynes will be able to slide on carriage, but be held securely into position when clipped in, rather than flop about. Check tynes on the used forklift for bending or excessive wear, especially in the ‘heel’ (bend) from the tynes
Battery (Electric only)
Inspect battery for missing caps or damaged leads. Any visible acid ought to be really small, no lasting buildup. Check water system (if installed) for leaks. Start up charger and make certain the system functions, check outlet plug for damage.
Notes on buying over the internet without having inspection
If you live interstate from your used forklift in question or happen to be in a rural area, you might be compelled to purchase on the internet. There is no problem using this type of approach, you only need to be 74dexmpky careful. When emailing a supplier, require extensive details and loads of photos, especially close ups in the motor and mast/carriage. When possible suggest to them to a friend or relative with mechanical knowledge. Check against other suppliers for price and condition of units exactly the same price. Find out about warranty availability, it is almost always restricted for interstate purchasing but ensure the salesman is aware that you anticipate reliability and great condition and they are able to return the forklift if this doesn’t meet your expectations.