6 Forklift Maintenance Best Practices to Keep Your Operation Running

  • Best Forklift Maintenance Practices

    Sticking to a regular maintenance plan and focusing on best practices can help keep your forklifts up and running now and for years to come.

If you recently hired new staff or want to reiterate the importance of forklift maintenance to your warehouse team, consider these six tips to emphasize the value of following proper maintenance procedures:

1. Follow the Manufacturer's Service Schedule

This is typically every 90 days or 100 hours. Keeping parts regularly serviced and updated helps keep small issues from turning into bigger (and likely more-expensive) problems. 

2. Complete a Daily Operator Checklist

Have your operators check basic parts and ensure everything is in working order before they begin using a forklift. By utilizing Raymond’s iWAREHOUSE® operator management tools, forklift checklist questions can be customized, including conditional questions, to suit the specific needs of your business. Completed forklift operator checklist forms are stored in the system, creating an electronic “paper trail” to meet regulatory requirements for the recording of OSHA forklift checklist forms.

3. Keep Dirt and Debris at Bay

This process should include blowing out the radiator, wiping down any dirty elements of the forklift and changing any filters that have become dirty. Checking on this regularly will help keep your forklift in top working order for many years. 

4. Check Hydraulic Hoses

Hydraulic hoses can crack, split or weep, causing equipment break down when levels drop too low. Replace any damaged hoses at the first sign of stress.

5. Watch for Tire Wear

Replace tires when you see chunking, cracking or flat spots on your tires. For optimal performance, make certain your forklift wheels and tires are the proper fit for your intended use.

6. Charge Batteries on a Schedule

Setting up a charging routine helps extend battery life. The general rule of thumb is to recharge the battery after an eight-hour shift or when it’s discharged more than 30%.