Forklift Maintenance 101

Your forklifts represent a significant investment and to protect that investment, as well as for the safety of your workforce, you need to properly maintain them. If routine maintenance is ignored, the results could be as minor as significant downtime or as major as a serious injury to one of your workers.


In addition to the risk of damage to your equipment or injury to your employees, there are several compelling reasons to make sure that your team is following the manufacturer's guidelines for maintaining you equipment.


Extended Life Span

Just like any machine, a forklift will wear out over time, but by keeping up with routine maintenance, you can make sure that your forklifts will last as long as possible.


Resale Value

At some point, you’ll want to trade or sell your equipment. If you regularly maintain your trucks, and keep a close record of all maintenance and repairs, they’ll be worth more.



Even more important than extended life span and increased resale value is the safety of your employees. Improperly maintained equipment can cause the operators to be wary of working with your trucks and the result could be accidents, drops, or injuries.


Decreased Downtime

If you plan for routine maintenance and repairs, you can schedule downtime so as not to interrupt production in your facility.


Inspection Checklists

OSHA regulations can be summarized with a daily  inspection checklist.


With the power off, check the following:

  • Check for leaks from fuel, hydraulic fluid, engine oil, or radiator coolant
  • Tire condition and pressure
  • Load backrest security
  • Hoses, mast chains, cables, and stops
  • Overhead guard

With the power on:

  • Accelerator
  • Service Brake
  • Parking brake
  • Steering operation
  • Drive control in forward and reverse

On a monthly schedule, the following should be performed:

  • Inspect all parts for any cracks
  • Lubricate the chassis and mast
  • Change the engine oil and filter
  • Adjust the engine timing and idle
  • Inspect the drive belt tension
  • Check the lift, tilt, and cylinder operations
  • Check the battery in electric lifts


Final Words

Properly maintaining your forklifts is not only a good financial decision, but it can also prevent accidents and save lives. While this list includes only a few of the recommended maintenance steps, it should serve to underscore the importance of properly maintaining equipment in compliance with safety standards developed by equipment manufacturers in partnership with governing bodies such as the Occupational Safety and Health Administration.


Ask the Pros

If you’re unsure about the required maintenance for your equipment, check with the professionals at Ring Power Lift Trucks. We are the premier forklift dealer in Florida with a broad range of forklifts as well as other materials handling equipment. We represent all of the leading forklift manufacturers and can work with you to select a new or used forklift for your operation. We also offer short term and long term forklift rentals. We serve Jacksonville, Sarasota, and many other locations in Florida, and our service go beyond sales and rentals. We can also supply you with forklift parts and service to minimize your downtime.


If you would like any more information about the products or services we offer, visit our website or reach out to us at 877-544-5438.



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