Forklifts are extremely popular material handling devices used for lifting and transportation of material within the facility. They are some of the most widely used material handling solutions across the world in warehouses and manufacturing facilities. With organizations with large operations, there are often a large number of forklifts in use. In such a case, it’s important to keep the costs of operating a fleet of forklifts under control. The larger the fleet, the larger is the cost-saving in the case of the forklift. In this article, we will find out how to keep the long-term forklift costs (cost of material handling equipment) under control.
Leasing your forklifts
When your forklifts have been in service for a long time, they might require frequent servicing, have downtime, and consequently you might have to decide whether to replace, retire, or relocate the truck. Doing any of this involves costs that are not easily predictable until they occur. Therefore, in the case of equipment such as forklifts, it is a good idea to lease your forklifts to keep long-term costs under control. With proper planning, you can easily mitigate these risks and stop worrying about unforeseen costs appearing in the future.
Use fuel-saving techniques
Employing techniques such as Auto Throttle, driving speed limitation and the automatic engine shut-down function help curtail the fuel consumption of the trucks. There are ways to increase productivity and optimize fuel consumption. Another way is to use the programmable driving speed limitation function to limit the maximum driving speed to e.g. 15 – 25 km/h (unloaded) and to 10 – 20 km/h (loaded). You should ask the manufacturer for their recommended best practices for fuel-saving.
Scheduling annual or semi-annual inspections of your forklift fleet is a good way to reduce costs. In the long term, a well-oiled truck will have a longer lifespan and operate more smoothly than one that has not been inspected often.
Preventative maintenance schedules
‘Prevention is better than cure’, is a saying that holds true not only for human beings but for machines as well. When managing a fleet of trucks, it is imperative to have a preventative maintenance schedule in place to keep them in good condition and keep long-term costs under control. When the machines are regularly inspected, serviced, and maintained, they will have a longer lifespan leading to cost-savings in purchasing new vehicles. Additionally, you don’t have to spend on costly repairs due to regular preventative maintenance.
While training on proper forklift operation and forklift safety certification is required by the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) in the United States, it is the law in most Canadian provinces as well. Employee training is important, especially for equipment like forklifts owing to their safety requirements. It’s a great way to save costs as damage to forklifts or products caused by poor operating practices can cost a lot of money. Additionally, installing special equipment like directional shift inhibitors, speed limit controls, and other devices could maximize forklift and tire life and also reduce product damage. Click here.