A Novice's Guide to Forklift Selection

About Me
The Big Build: How to Use Heavy Construction Equipment

My name is Jerry, and I run a small construction company in Perth. My team normally completes relatively small jobs such as plastering walls, repairing electrical systems and constructing patios. However, one day a big client got in touch to say they wanted me to help them construct a large apartment building. I have never taken on such a big job before, but I thought it was a good chance to grow my business and gain some new skills. A friend who has completed large scale jobs before advised me on how I should hire the people and heavy construction equipment needed for the job. I learnt a lot from him, and my company has since completed several more big construction jobs. I have decided to start this blog to advise others how to hire and maintain heavy equipment.

A Novice's Guide to Forklift Selection

23 April 2018
 Categories: , Blog

Are you new to the forklift hiring process? Forklifts are invaluable when it comes to lifting construction materials. However, the productivity, as well as efficiency of a forklift, depends on choosing the right one for your needs. With various types of forklifts available for hire, finding the most suitable one for your project may be challenging, especially if it's your first time hiring one. You have to narrow down your options and to do this, a few considerations have to be made. Here is a guide to help you in your selection.

Determine the Weight of The Loads You Intend to Lift

All forklifts have limits when it comes to loading capacity. It is imperative that you match the load lifting capacity of the forklift to the weight of the materials or load you intend to lift. Choosing the wrong forklift truck will have some consequences. First, a forklift truck with a lower load lifting capacity will make it harder to complete tasks at hand. That is, fewer loads will be lifted at a time and this can result in project delays. What's more, overloading the forklift can lead to damages to the heavy equipment and even pose safety hazards to your workers. On the other hand, a forklift with a load capacity that is more than necessary will only result in extra costs because more fuel will be needed to operate it. Manoeuvrability may also be an issue. Therefore, estimate the weight of the largest loads you want to lift and choose a forklift hire with a load capacity that is slightly higher than what you think you need.

Think About the Height

Just like load lifting capacity, forklifts also have limits regarding reach. Therefore, how high do you intend to lift your construction materials? You need to match the reach of the forklift to the height you intend to lift your construction materials. For maximum efficiency and productivity, go for the variable reach options. These types of forklifts are a great solution when it comes to the combination of lifting height, manoeuvrability and load capacity.

Assess the Type of Terrain

The terrain is also important when selecting a forklift. That's because it has an impact on the stability of the heavy machinery, which in turn affects its manoeuvrability as well as safety. Sand, mud and uneven ground will require a telehandler, four-wheel-drive or rough terrain forklift. On the other hand, if you are working on paved and smooth surfaces, you may want to hire a forklift with pneumatic tyres.