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Purchasing a forklift will help move things quickly and reduce warehouse injuries. Also, the forklift will help you move goods higher than your hand can reach. So, with this equipment, you’ll effectively utilize the available warehouse space.
Your only problem is that you’ve no idea the key features to check when shopping for the forklift. Given you’re spending a huge amount of money, you fear buying the wrong forklift. So what can you do to mitigate this risk?
To help you out, here are seven tips on purchasing a forklift for your business.
1. Find Out About Different Types of Forklifts
You need to start by researching the various general classes of forklifts available in the market. You want to know the feature of each class to determine the ideal forklift to purchase. For instance, if you want a battery-powered forklift that uses motor controllers to hoist things, then choose class 1.
The other thing is to check the special features that each of these forklift classes offers. For instance, you’ll find a flatbed trailer with a piggyback forklift, making it easy to move large volumes. So, you should clearly state your business’s need to decide the ideal type of forklift to purchase.
2. Examine Capacity
You need to check the maximum weights various forklifts can carry to determine the ideal one to purchase. You may assume that the forklift with the highest capacity is the best one to buy. However, this isn’t always the case, as you should choose a forklift’s capacity depending on your needs.
It’s a waste of money to buy a forklift with a huge capacity, yet your business doesn’t handle heavy loads. So, it’s wise you consider your company’s current and future needs when examining the capacity of various forklifts. If you’re uncertain about the ideal capacity to pick, consult a reputable forklift manufacturer.
3. Used vs. New Forklifts
The other thing is to compare the cost of buying a used vs. new forklift. It’s obvious that a used forklift will be cheap, but you need to check other costs. The reason is that the used forklift may keep breakdown and it’s costly to keep repairing it.
So, the safe bet is to buy a new forklift although you’ll spend more money. You want to avoid the headache of inspecting and repairing the used forklift. So, strive to find a reputable forklift manufacturer who offers amazing deals for new forklifts.
However, if you insist on buying a used forklift, find an expert who’ll inspect it before making the payment. You want to get a comprehensive report on the condition of the used forklift. Besides, the experts will help you know the value of the used forklift and avoid overpaying.
4. Compare Propane Forklifts with Electric Forklifts
The other thing is to check the pros and cons of buying propane vs. an electric forklift. The propane forklifts are cheaper than the electric ones. However, the propane forklifts are noisy and have a high maintenance cost.
On the other hand, electric forklifts have fewer moving parts, so they’re easy to maintain. Besides, the electrical forklifts are quiet and reduce environmental pollution. So, if your business can afford it, you should go for an electric forklift.
5. Decide Whether to Rent, Lease or Buy the Forklift
When comparing forklift costs, many business owners only consider the buying options. That’s why most of them end up being discouraged when they discover the high cost of buying a forklift. Some allocate a huge portion of the business’s budget to purchasing a forklift and are left with no money for other expenses.
The smart approach is to compare the cost of buying versus leasing versus renting a forklift. So, you’ll go for an option that is favorable to your business. For instance, if you only need a forklift for a limited duration, then opt to rent it instead of buying.
6. Learn the Maintenance Requirements
The forklift maintenance plan is the other thing you’ll need to check to decide the best one to purchase. Some forklifts are cheap but’s it’s a nightmare to maintain them. You’ll have to keep maintaining them after a few days to prevent breakdowns and enhance safety.
So, you should strive to find forklifts that are easy to maintain. You’ll, however, ask how you’ll know the maintenance needs of a given forklift before buying it. Most companies selling forklifts are reluctant to disclose information about maintenance requirements.
So, to get this information seek the recommendations of other companies using forklifts. You want to learn from them the maintenance requirements of their forklifts. So, with this information, you’ll find the perfect forklift to purchase for your business.
7. Check the Availability of Parts and Accessories
Before you buy a forklift, you need to check the accessories and the parts you’ll need. You want to check the availability of these products and the costs. The ideal situation is when you can access these parts and accessories locally and at a fair price.
Also, look for forklifts that are easy and fast to repair when the need arises. So, you’ll need to find experts who you can trust to offer reliable forklift repair services.
Simplify Purchasing a Forklift by Knowing the Key Things to Check
Knowing the right things to check will make purchasing a forklift for your business easy. You need to compare different types of forklifts to decide the perfect one to buy. Also, you should check the forklift’s capacity and maintenance plan.
The other thing is to decide whether to buy or lease the forklift for your business. In addition, you need to decide whether to buy a new or a used forklift. You’ll go for the alternative that’ll not cause too much financial strain on your business.
For more practical tips on buying business equipment, please see our other blogs.