Our motto for maintaining safe forklifts is: “When in doubt, check it out!”

It’s always a good idea to keep a regular service schedule for your forklift fleet, but occasionally, we all fall behind or forget. If you think you might have missed a service appointment or can’t remember when you had the last one, here are nine ways to help figure out if it’s time for a checkup.  

  1. Check your calendar. Has it been six months or more? If the answer is yes, it’s time for a service call. 
  2. Count the hours. If you have a general idea of when your forklift was last serviced, you can count the hours of use to help figure out if it’s time for a service call. Has it been 250* hours or more since the last service if you have an internal combustion forklift? Is it used for 500* hours or more if you have an electric forklift? If either answer is yes, it’s time to service your forklift. 
  3. Notice the tires. Check your forklift tires for cuts, cracks, tire treads, or bald spots. If you see anything unusual, it’s a reason for a service call. 
  4. Focus on the forks. Are your forks cracked, dented, or misshapen in any way? If so, you run the risk of dropping or damaging a load. Don’t take the chance. It’s time for a service call. 
  5. Check the chains. Look at your forklift chains to check for rust, corrosion, kinks, or other damage. Properly lubricated forklift chains usually last around 6,000 hours. If you see damage anywhere at any time, it’s time to service your forklift chains to ensure they are safe. 
  6. Look for oil leaks. If your forklift’s oil level is low, you risk increased friction and temperatures, which can cause problems in other parts of the forklift. Oil leaks are also a safety hazard for other forklifts and pedestrians. If your forklift leaks even a tiny amount of oil, it’s time for an immediate service call. 
  7. Listen up. Are your brakes grinding? Are your tires squeaking? Is the mast making an unusual sound? Noises are often the first sign of a problem — time to make a call. 
  8. Follow your nose. Do you smell fuel coming from the forklift engine? If so, you may need a new filter or service. 
  9. Call your local forklift dealer. If your local dealership services your forklift, they’ll be able to tell you exactly when it was in for repair. Let them do the work so you don’t have to.  

If you’re concerned about your forklift or fleet, click here to schedule a service appointment to help put your mind at ease.  

*These are generalizations. Please check your manufacturer’s guide or manual for information on your specific forklift.