Should You Pay for Forklift Repair or Replacement?

Should You Pay for Forklift Repair or Replacement?

Retiring a forklift is a tough decision. Forklifts don’t come cheap, and if you’re unsure how to measure forklift life, you may be putting your equipment to rest too soon. However, keeping a forklift in service for too long negatively impacts productivity and safety in your facility. 

Is your lift truck in constant need of repairs and forklift services? Does it lag behind the rest of your forklift fleet? Understanding how soon repairs should be made for a forklift and when forklift replacement is the better option is vital to effective fleet management. Keep reading to learn how to track the lifespan of a forklift and optimize your fleet. 

How Do You Measure Forklift Life?

The economic life of a forklift is measured in hours. The average forklift runs for 2,000 hours per year, and the average total lifespan of a forklift is 10,000 hours. However, if you use a specialized machine from a high-end manufacturer, the lifespan of a forklift can be as long as 20,000 hours. 

Other factors significantly influence the economic life of a forklift. Equipment used for multiple shifts in cold temperatures will have a different expectancy than a lift truck used indoors in a clean environment. By scheduling routine forklift maintenance, you can prevent sudden breakdowns in your fleet and ensure your machines operate as efficiently as possible. 

Forklifts that don’t receive routine inspections and repairs can inflate your maintenance costs. Unexpected malfunctions lead to downtime, and if you ignore the problems, the cost of ownership can skyrocket. If you want to prevent untimely equipment failure and put off a forklift replacement, build a planned maintenance schedule and stick to it. 

Another variable in forklift life is whether the truck is electric or uses an internal combustion engine (ICE). Electric forklifts last longer than ICE machines, because electric lift trucks have fewer moving parts. A battery typically lasts around five years.   

How Soon Should Repairs Be Made to a Forklift?

Regular forklift maintenance makes all the difference in the lifespan of a forklift. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has determined that workers shouldn’t use a forklift if it isn’t in excellent operating condition. A damaged forklift affects productivity in your facility and creates unsafe conditions for your employees. 

To ensure safety and efficiency, you should perform forklift repairs and maintenance based on the hours used. You should schedule forklift repairs for every 200 hours a truck is operated. A professional technician can ensure the safe operation of your machine with replacement parts like fuel, air, and oil filters. They can also inspect the distributor point as well as drive belt tension, sparkplugs, and rotors. 

Do you have faith in your forklift fleet? HTX Material Handling can increase the lifespan of your forklift with routine maintenance and repair services. Contact us today. 

The more you use your truck, the more often you should schedule forklift repairs. Lift trucks that are frequently used in extreme weather conditions and that move heavy loads should have forklift maintenance at least once every three months. If you need help establishing a forklift repair schedule, consult with a specialist to determine your needs. 

When Should You Invest in Forklift Replacement?

Choosing between forklift repair and replacement is easier with a forklift cost analysis. Before you decide, estimate the maintenance cost per hour for the machine. New forklifts have a low cost of ownership, but the maintenance costs surpass the lift truck’s usefulness over time. If you need forklift repairs for one machine more frequently than any other truck in your fleet, it’s time to consider a replacement. 

When performing a forklift cost analysis, ask the following questions:

  • What is the maintenance cost per hour for the lift truck?
  • Has it had more than four forklift repair orders in the last year?
  • Have maintenance costs doubled in the previous year?
  • Have there been any accidents?
  • How old is the forklift?

Remember, if a forklift has served 10,000 hours, it may be time for a replacement. Consider the conditions you’ve exposed the lift truck to and whether it’s a gas-powered or electric forklift. If your forklift has created dangerous situations by dropping loads or losing power during operation, it’s a good idea to forego forklift repair and take it out of commission. 

HTX Material Handling Provides Comprehensive Forklift Repair and Maintenance Services

Ensuring your lift trucks are in good condition promotes efficiency and safety in your facility. Your workforce stays safe during operations, and you keep the cost of ownership for your forklift fleet manageable. As an industry-HTX Material Handling provides thorough and cost-effective forklift repair services. We’re an industry-leading material handling supplier. With us, you’ll have access to a wide range of resources and a deep knowledge base. 

Our forklift maintenance services help you catch issues before they cause malfunctions and unexpected downtime at your warehouse. With a proactive approach, you can prevent expensive repairs and reduce your employees’ chances of injury. Reach out today to learn more about our services and equipment. 

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