Which Forklift is right for me? The Ultimate Guide 2018

If you are looking to invest in a new forklift truck, you need to make sure you choose the right truck for your needs. There are many types of forklift on the market, each with its own unique set of capabilities. How can you be sure which is right for you? Hitec Lift Trucks has created this helpful guide for you, so you can make an informed decision when purchasing your next new or used forklift.


guide to buying forklifts 2018


Diesel power, electric – or both?

More forklifts than ever before are designed with electric power instead of the old diesel or gas engines. Electric and hybrid forklifts can be recharged at a charging station, and the battery offers hours of productivity between charges. Electric forklifts tend to need less maintenance and less frequent repairs. However, they can be expensive to buy and run – especially when you consider the downtime involved in charging each machine.

On the other hand, diesel engine forklifts can operate almost around the clock, with minimum downtime required to refill the fuel. They tend to be cheaper to buy, and in the short term they can be more cost-effective than their electric counterparts. Fossil fuel engines are less environmentally friendly, and they can lower the air quality of your workplace. You could also opt for the benefits of both. CESAB‘s forklift range includes hybrid forklifts that combine electric power with a gas or diesel engine.


guide to buying forklifts


What will your truck be used for?

Different types of work require different kinds of truck. If you attempt to lift goods or materials with the wrong equipment, you risk causing damage to the load, and to the truck – not to mention the risk of injury to the operator and those in the vicinity. It is always important to use a forklift truck of the right size and type, equipped with the right accessories, and weighted correctly for the task at hand.

We provide you with all the information you need when you purchase a new forklift: including the machine’s loading capacity. We consult with you on the applications your forklift truck will carry out, and advise you on the capabilities of your chosen model, so you can buy with confidence and know you have the right tools for the job.

For example, if you need a forklift for warehousing tasks like stock picking, you are likely to need a narrow truck that can slip comfortably between the aisles. It might also be useful to have a truck with telescopic reach, so items can be picked straight from the shelves without the need for manual loading and unloading.

On the other hand, a forklift used for agricultural and industrial purposes may be much wider, increasing the turning circle but also improving stability. Where items only need to be collected from floor level and moved, standard front forks are more suitable than a telescopic handler.

Some trucks can combine functions through changeable accessories and variable counterbalance weights. A forklift is typically used for lifting goods, but it might also be called into action for lifting people. As long as the right access platform and truck size are used, forklifts can be extremely useful for short-term work carried out at height, such as maintenance and repairs.


Three wheels or four?

Many forklifts have three wheels – two at the front, and another at the back. However, some have four wheels. There are advantages and disadvantages to each kind, so make sure you go with the correct option. Trucks with three wheels can turn and reverse quickly, but they also have a higher risk of tipping. Trucks with four wheels are more capable on rough terrain and can handle slopes more safely. They also offer less chance of tipping when they lift. However, they tend to be larger and have less manoeuvrability.


2018 guide to buying forklift trucks


Buy new and used forklifts today

Hitec Lift Trucks is a Wellingborough based company offering new and used forklifts for sale and for hire, along with a range of forklift care and maintenance services. We are an official supplier of CESAB forklift trucks and accessories, with an extensive range of trucks available for almost any commercial, industrial or agricultural application. For more information on our range of forklifts for sale, and to discuss the best forklift for your needs, please contact us today through our website – or call 01933 228 127.

2 replies
  1. Benjamin Coleman
    Benjamin Coleman says:

    I have seen carefully reading up on the article, and i wanted to ask you because i’m fully inmersed in process and purchase decision. I have to decide which forklift is better for our warehouse. It is a small warehouse with 4 operators. Do you recomend thre or four wheels forklift?

    • Hannah Newman-Plummer
      Hannah Newman-Plummer says:

      Hello Benjamin, thank you for getting in touch with us! Regarding your question, the answer very much depends on your warehouse layout, application and loads. Depending on your location, we’d be more than happy to send a member of our experienced team for a site visit; they’d then be able to advise you on what would be best suited to your requirements. Is this something we can arrange?


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