New or Used Forklift


Use of Frequency:

It may be that you will use the machine for only two or three hours per day or for two or three days in the week. 

Also you may start with a less expensive model. 

Used forklifts are in great demand and you can always swap to a heavier duty model after a year or two. 

In fact you might not even want to buy a forklift but to lease or rent one instead, especially if you haven't quite established how much and what type of use it will get. Some forklift specialists offer a rent to own option. You may pay a little more if you go to a forklift specialist to buy a used machine but there will a wider variety on offer and the advantage of a warranty and a business reputation to be sustained. By checking out two or three such operations, you will quickly acquire a useful working knowledge of the subject.

Even before you choose between new and used, you will need to determine how much weight the machine will be required to transport. You won't need a premium machine with a load capacity of 15,000 kilograms if the heaviest load you are ever going to move is 500 kilograms. The height of your shelves is another issue.

Forklift manoeuvrability

If the forklift is mainly going to be used indoors, then manoeuvrability is a major consideration. (So are exhaust emissions!) How tightly does it turn? How much physical space does it occupy? You don't buy a 1959 Cadillac if you spend most of your driving time in the supermarket carpark!

Forklift service and maintenance costs

Before buying any machine whether used or new, you have to investigate the running costs. If you settle on a used forklift, examine its maintenance history. If the records are not available, you should have it inspected by an expert. Assuming you already have your forklift driver licence, take it for a test run with a load aboard. Does the machine stop well and turn quickly? A forklift with few marks on the paintwork is likely to have been well cared for and probably lightly used. As with cars, brands vary enormously in price and reputation, although there are no duds these days. Servicing schedules will not be identical and in some cases forklifts that cost less to buy will cost more to maintain. So check the cost of replacement parts before you buy (or lease). 

There are numerous brands and types of forklifts. You may wish to have a diesel or LPG machine instead of petrol. You can also get electric machines. Some have dual fuel (petrol and LPG)