How often do I really need to perform planned maintenance on my forklift or walkie stacker?

We hear this question often. The correct answer involves knowing about the individual operation, type and quantity of lifts and the environment in which the equipment operates on a daily basis.

Below is a list of questions to evaluate your maintenance needs. Once maintenance frequency is determined, a scheduled maintenance plan helps avoid costly repairs and minimises unnecessary downtime.

What is the age of the forklift/ walkie stacker? Age plays a huge roll in determining how often units need to be looked at by a technician. As the unit racks up the hours, the standard 250-hour interval doesn't always apply. The older the forklift/ walkie stacker the more attention it will need for maintenance.

How many forklifts in your fleet? A smaller fleet with fewer units makes the need even greater, as there are no back-up forklifts when other units have broken-down. Imagine only having one unit and it going down do to a simple maintenance issue!

How many lifts have attachments? These forklifts require more attention because attachments tax the transmission and cooling system of a forklift. Because of this, forklifts with attachments have a shorter service interval than regular forklifts. Most units with attachments are very specialised for a unique purpose, should that unit go down due to lack of maintenance would it slow or even stop your operations?

Parts for most attachments are also very specialised and rarely in stock. Can your operations afford that forklift unit being down waiting on parts due to a simple lack of grease? We've seen our fair share of customers having to halt operations simply due to a lack of planned maintenance!

What kind of environment are you working in? Operational environment plays a massive part in determining the frequency of the maintenance. Normal temperature, indoor units typically require less maintenance than outdoor units or those used in cold areas.

Do you have an Electric forklift? The forklift won't keep charge? Look at the last time the battery was watered. Having well-trained operators and/ or a certified technician maintain the battery is absolutely crucial. An untrained operator filling the battery can go bad in so many ways. If they overfill the battery, it overflows while charging - damaging the battery, the forklift and anything near it. Not to mention the risk of injury to the operator should they get acid in their eyes or mouth.

Do you use your forklift seasonally? The seasonal forklift user relies heavily on the units for a short amount of time, but during that time that forklift cannot go down! Planning and performing maintenance during the off season ensures the least amount of down time when the forklift is most needed.

Planned maintenance is key. Ensure your equipment is ready to perform the job it was purchased for!

Knowing you’ve done the required maintenance on time will give the peace of mind that your forklift is ready to go and work safely and for years to come.

Let us walk you through the appropriate frequency for your specific needs. Spending the small amount for the planned maintenance early on is sure to save headaches and high repair bills later!

TASK Forklift performs thousands of forklift PMP's every year and we know what it takes to optimise your Planned Maintenance program and would appreciate the opportunity to speak to you about your current program, or help you establish a customised Planned Maintenance program for your forklift fleet.

Contact your local TASK Forklift Branch today. Or call 1300 13 2002 and we will put you in contact with someone who can assist you right away.

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