Important Forklift Maintenance Tips
For your forklifts to keep operating reliably for years to come with minimum downtime, you need to keep the relevant forklift parts and spares at hand to quickly make the necessary repairs when they are required. However, even with good-quality forklift parts and spares at the ready, it is still essential to schedule full maintenance at the right intervals. When you buy forklifts with built-in diagnostics functionality, this can help to plan for maintenance and routine services to ensure that operations are not completely disrupted. But, let us take a look at how well-planned servicing and maintenance can reduce the cost of having to invest in forklift parts and spares.
Do not skimp on the quality of the forklift parts and spares. This is one area where you do not want to compromise. Only buy original parts and spares, as this will help to reduce the number of breakdowns and, most importantly, help prevent serious accidents because of parts failure.
Schedule the Maintenance Dates
Do not wait until breakdowns occur before you schedule maintenance. Every time a forklift is out of action because of a breakdown, it means productivity loss. Indeed, you may very well find that it breaks down at a crucial stage of operations. And because you did not plan for such an eventuality, you may not have the forklift parts and spares at hand to fix it there and then. This means having to get a replacement machine and waiting a few days before your most-used forklift is back on duty. Apart from breakdowns, consider how a lack of maintenance leads to inefficiency. Fuel or energy usage increases and you also face more safety risks. If the brake system fails or operates incorrectly, it can lead to serious accidents and injuries. It thus makes sense to schedule maintenance at the right intervals.
Maintaining the Forklifts
Even a small part missing or broken can lead to malfunctioning of the forklift. This, in turn, means more money spent on repairs. Firstly, keep the fluid lines clean and this can be done by ensuring that the hydraulic and oil lines operate as they should. Any fluid sediment build-up leads to a reduction in the lifespan of the forklift. If you follow the simple rules of replacing parts when necessary, buying only quality parts and spares, and keeping to the maintenance schedule, your forklifts can be functional and efficient for ten years or longer.
Tyres are among the parts that need extra care, especially when the forklifts operate on rough surfaces. Worn or damaged tyres are dangerous and at the same time increase energy usage, whether it is battery or fuel-powered. If not addressed, the tyres can deflate to the level where they can lead to the forklift tipping over when a heavy load is lifted or carried.
In addition, you need to ensure that the wheels are greased well to prevent parts failure. Correct lubrication helps to reduce the wear on the machine and if everything is well maintained, you will enjoy smooth operation, fuel efficiency, and optimal safety. If anything breaks down, replace the part immediately. Always, and this is extremely important, have original manufacturer forklift parts and spares available to immediately repair the machines.
You need to regularly inspect the forklifts. Set up a checklist for operators regarding pre-usage and post-usage inspections. They must do the visual inspections, while you must also ensure diagnostic inspections are performed at set intervals. The inspection intervals will be determined by the age and condition of the forklift, the hours it has logged, the type of work it regularly does, its service record, and past maintenance.
Daily maintenance schedules must be set for inspection of the forklifts for leaks, tyre wear, operational safety, operation of the lifts, brakes, and steering, in addition to mast operation, fork condition, and oil, hydraulic fluid, and water levels. You need to do preventative maintenance through regular servicing. Also conduct full maintenance at set intervals. Reactive maintenance must be done when there is a problem, and at once.
At Bidvest Forklifts, we stock original manufacturer forklift parts and spares, offer full servicing and maintenance, and sell top-quality forklifts that are energy efficient, are equipped with self-diagnostics systems, and are covered by service and maintenance plans.