How to Rent a Forklift
Updated: Dec 8, 2020
Before renting a forklift the best thing you can do for yourself is take the time to create a plan of action. There are many questions you will need answers to before you begin. Planning ahead saves you money, time, and headaches. Following is a Step-by-Step Guide that will walk you through the information you need to ensure you rent the proper forklift for the job.
Determine Weight Capacity. How much weight is the forklift required to lift and carry? An average forklift has a weight capacity of around 2500KG. Weight capacity is an important detail when planning your forklift rental because you do not want to pay for a rental only to find that it cannot safely lift the loads you need to handle. Also, how is the product packaged? Is it on pallets or sitting on the floor? Is it uniform in size or irregular? Is the product secured i.e. shrink wrapped or strapped? Make note of this information because you may require special attachments, some examples being: Drum "beak and jaw" attachment for handling drums, Fork tine extensions ("slippers") for handling long loads such as plasterboard, etc.
Determine Lift Height. The next factor to consider is lift height. Similar to weight, measurement must be as accurate as possible. Not only do the forks need to reach a certain height (as determined by your facility needs), but it must have the ability to lift the weight of your load to that height. A forklift that cannot tolerate the amount of weight or lift that weight to the proper height is not only a waste of time and money, but it is very dangerous. A forklift that is overloaded while lifting a load at height can very easily tip over forwards, with potential of causing serious damage to property, equipment, and people.
Identify the environment and ground surface(s) the forklift will be driven on. Will the forklift operate in a warehouse, factory, construction site, lumberyard, ship’s dock? The environment makes a difference in determining what type of forklift you will need - Internal combustion forklifts such as Propane, Gas and Diesel Forklifts are very versatile in large open indoor spaces and outdoors on concrete, tarmac or gravel, however for confined spaces or food manufacturing, an electric forklift will need to be used to eliminate the exhaust gasses. Additionally, what is the required turning radius and what is the minimum aisle widths you need to maneuver the forklift through? If you are short on space, a 3 wheeled counterbalance forklift allows for more maneuverability (though at the expense of stability), as for aisles, there are many different types of forklift to suit your aisle needs - Reach forklifts, "Turret trucks", and Articulated forklifts are among the most common types.
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