Mon, 26 Sep 2022

Before you buy a forklift for your shipping business, you need to make sure that it's the right one for your needs. It means knowing how much you're willing and able to spend and what kind of lift height and attachment options are needed for the job. In this post, we'll look at some key considerations in buying a forklift so that you can make sure it will be an investment, not a liability.


While considering the cost of a new forklift, it's also essential to consider the total cost of ownership. It means more than just how much money you'll spend on your purchase. It also includes:

  • Maintenance costs
  • Fuel costs
  • Insurance costs
  • Repair and replacement costs

The good news is that all these items add up to less than a few hundred dollars annually. But if you're not prepared for them, they can be unexpected expenses that could jeopardize your budget. And if something breaks down suddenly, which is pretty standard, your business will come to a screeching halt until it's repaired or replaced.

Forklift Size

The size of the forklift you need depends on several factors. First, consider the size of your warehouse, especially in terms of height and width. You'll want to consider a compact forklift if you're working in a cramped space with low ceilings and narrow aisles between racks or shelves. It can navigate confined spaces more efficiently.

Second, consider how many pallets will be loaded onto each floor. If your operation involves loading multiple pallets simultaneously, you may want to invest in more giant capacity forks or side lifts. It increases productivity by making fewer trips back and forth between storage areas and trucks.

Finally, consider what kinds of shipping containers you'll receive. Do they have narrow openings? Are they oversize? Do they require special handling? These questions will help determine what types of lifts are available and what features are necessary for safe operation and, therefore, worth spending money on.

Attachment Options

Attachments are great tools for getting more use out of your forklift. For example, they can help you reach higher heights and longer distances. It can even lift heavier loads than the standard forklift can handle on its own.

One such popular attachment is the slip sheet forklift attachment. It allows you to pull heavy sheets off pallets and move them directly onto another pallet without an additional workforce. It saves time and money as it eliminates the need for extra workers who would otherwise have been necessary to move them manually.

Lift Height Requirements

When considering purchasing a forklift, lift height is one of the most important things. Lift height refers to the distance between the forks and your load. It's essential as it dictates how much weight you can carry and whether or not a specific type of forklift will fit through doorways.

There are many different types of forklifts on the market, each with unique specifications like lift heights and maximum speeds. For example, a pallet jack has higher lift heights than other vehicles because they are primarily used for moving pallets around warehouses and factories with plenty of clearance. In comparison, an order picker might have lower lift heights. They can vary widely depending on where in store each item was placed by staff members during stocking operations.

Power Type

Suppose you're looking into buying a new lift truck for your business but aren't sure which type will work best for your needs or what the different kinds of lift trucks look like. Thus, let's shed some light on what makes each type differs from one another so choosing between them becomes more accessible.

  • Electric forklifts: These models are powered by a battery, which can charge while the vehicle is parked. They are ideal for warehouses with minimal outdoor space and limited power sources.
  • Diesel forklifts: These models use diesel or natural gas to generate electricity that powers the motor. They're typically more potent than electric-powered models but produce more noise and pollution.
  • Fuel cell forklift or FC: FCs don't run on any fuel. Instead, they create electricity through a chemical reaction between hydrogen fuel and oxygen in the air. FCs have an advantage over other forklifts because they produce zero emissions. However, they're still a relatively new technology that's more expensive than traditional options. There aren't many places in the U.S yet where you can refuel your FC at home like you would an electric car.

Contact a Trusted Forklift Dealer

Once you've determined the type of forklift you need, it's time to find a dealer in your area from which you can purchase it. If you're considering buying a new or used forklift for your shipping business, we recommend going through an authorized dealer. They'll be able to provide you with the highest quality equipment and make sure that everything is properly maintained for your business needs.

Start by asking other people who own a similar business if they have any recommendations for dealerships in your area. You might also want to search online reviews of local forklift dealerships before contacting them directly. So you can get an idea of what type of experience other customers have had working with these companies.

Get a Good Quote on the Shipping Equipment

Before you make any purchase, you must get at least three quotes for the equipment you need. This way, you have a better chance of negotiating with the dealers and getting the best deal possible.

Ask for referrals from your clients or other businesses if they have experience with any suppliers. They can recommend a good forklift service provider in your area as well. It will therefore be easy for them to reach out to their contacts when they need help.

Ask about warranties and maintenance plans that are available on these products before buying anything. It will protect you against issues later down the road when something goes wrong with your machine. It is also essential to determine if spare parts are available if something breaks down unexpectedly during operation. No one wants their business productivity slowed down by malfunctioning equipment.

Research Your Options Thoroughly Before Buying

After reading this article, we hope you better understand what kind of forklift you need based on key considerations. We also hope you now have enough information to research the options available to ensure that your business has all the equipment it needs to succeed. Finally, we want to reiterate just how important it is for any company looking into purchasing new equipment. Before making a purchase decision or signing contracts with suppliers/manufacturers, one should thoroughly research their options. It will save everyone time and money down the line.

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