Spectra Finds Reach Truck & Mezzanine with ProLift

Spectra Press & Promotions

Bill French, owner of Spectra Press & Promotions, recently completed construction of a 5,500 sq ft warehouse expansion and mezzanine. He needed to find reliable equipment within budget and a forklift partner to support him after the sale.

“One of the things that I knew was Toyota had a great reliability in their equipment,” French said. “So getting a refurbished piece of machinery, I knew I was getting a practically brand new one. [It] was going to be something that wouldn’t slow us down, it would keep us efficient, and keep us rolling.”

While working with ProLift to select which forklift best met his company’s needs, French was informed by a contractor that the construction of a mezzanine in his new storage area would cost $7,000 more than originally quoted, a huge setback. When he explained the situation to ProLift, they assured French that they’d help with the mezzanine construction.

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Common Signals of Forklift Abuse

forklift abuse“Our forklift repairs have increased and we have maxed out our budget only 6 months into the year. How do I determine which repairs are for normal wear and when the damage is caused by forklift abuse?”

When an operator or the application a forklift operates puts a forklift in a situation that causes equipment damage beyond normal wear and tear, it is considered forklift abuse. Some damage can be attributed to reckless driving. In other cases, an untrained operator will harm the forklift without realizing the damage caused.

Common signals of forklift abuse:

  • Tire marks on the floor
  • Clean patches on floor from white-marking tires pulling off dirt
  • Dents on the door frames, roof supports & delivery vehicles
  • Missing paint & impacts on the forklift counterweight
  • Peeled or ripped stickers & safety decals
  • Damaged pallet rack
  • Bent or chipped forks
  • Shattered tail lights & turn signal
  • Cracked back-up lights & alarm
  • Flat-spotted forklift tire tread, or out-of-round tires

It’s difficult to witness and correct unsafe or reckless driving at all times; however, you can begin to recognize forklift abuse with an audit of your equipment and facility.

Starting with the list of signals above, begin a checklist of forklift damages that seem outside the realm of normal wear. For your forklift, consider the age of the unit and how many hours it operates each day. To document damage, take pictures of the forklift or facility. A picture solidifies the time and date of known damage and can be shared easily with co-workers.

Forklift abuse comes with a high price tag that includes service repairs, destroyed product and facility damage. In addition to regular communication about forklift audits, you can increase safe operation with forklift safety training.

Have you spotted unsafe forklift operation at your facility? Contact ProLift to schedule a forklift safety class. We can train any employee that operates your forklift or your on-site trainer.

How to Remove the Wrong Forklift Rental from Your Production

forklift rental

Don’t be limited by the wrong forklift rental – your rental specialist can help!

“My company has a forklift rental but I’ve realized the equipment isn’t fitting our production needs. What steps do I take to secure a better forklift rental?”

Having the wrong forklift may be noticed immediately after receiving the rental or several weeks later. Your company may also find a forklift rental isn’t sufficient after a production change at the facility, which can alter the dimensions, capacity or stacking height of the handled product, where the rental operates or stacking heights.

If your company is in need of a new forklift rental, take time to consider what you want to accomplish with the equipment. Along with sharing information about the product(s) you move, make the forklift rental specialist aware of:

Restrictive Areas
Thinking of where the forklift rental will be operated, will your operators experience space limitations, such as aisles or overhead obstructions? If so, measure areas that decrease working space and share those with your forklift rental specialist. These measurements should include not only aisle widths but stacking heights for racking, mezzanines and other storage solutions.

Indoor / Outdoor Operation
Does your operation include taking the forklift rental outside? If your current rental isn’t equipped with pneumatic tires for an outdoor application, you risk premature wear on the tires or becoming stuck on surfaces such as gravel.

Environmental Policy
Has your Safety Team shared an updated policy? A new policy may require lowered fuel emissions (i.e. LP to battery), or note all forklift rentals in operation have back-up alarms or lights.

Don’t be limited by the wrong forklift rental! Armed with accurate information about the purpose of the forklift rental, your facility and handled product(s), a rental specialist can guide you to the best equipment. Some specialists also provide additional support by offering to schedule an on-site visit with a sales consultant. After reviewing your space, the consultant can recommend the best equipment for your application and then work directly with the rental specialist to schedule delivery of the forklift rental.

Need a
forklift rental? ProLift rents Toyota Forklifts, rated #1 in the industry since 2002. We can also supply rentals for attachments and special applications.  Contact ProLift to speak to a Forklift Rental Specialist!

Reporting Issues with a Forklift Rental

Toyota forklift rental“Our forklift rental gets stuck in gravel when being operated outside. This issue happens almost daily and our operators are frustrated. How can we prevent this from happening?”

A forklift that consistently gets stuck in gravel is an indicator of it having the wrong tires for your application. While cushion tires are ideal for warehouse use and smooth pavement, a solid pneumatic forklift tire is designed specifically to be more reliable for the outdoor elements.

If full details of the forklift rental’s use weren’t collected during the time of set-up, you are at risk for having the wrong rental be delivered to your facility. During the discovery process, it’s important to share what you need the forklift rental to accomplish and where it will be operating.

It’s also possible that when your company originally rented the forklift, it was not needed for outdoor operation. When a production change occurs at your facility, it’s helpful to discuss the update with your forklift rental specialist to ensure your current forklift is a good fit.

Repeatedly getting the forklift rental stuck in gravel will lead to premature tire damage. A dealer typically oversees general wear and tear of the rental’s tires; however, knowingly using the forklift rental in the wrong setting will be deemed as operator abuse, making your company responsible for the tire replacement and labor. To avoid abuse charges, contact your forklift rental specialist to discuss this issue as well as the goals you’re trying to accomplish with the forklift rental. Your specialist can advise the best forklift rental to have in place at your facility.

Need a
forklift rental? ProLift rents Toyota Forklifts, rated #1 in the industry since 2002. We can also supply rentals for attachments and special applications.  Contact ProLift to speak to a Forklift Rental Specialist!

Forklift Fuel Consumption and Efficiency

Forklift fuel consumptionWhen attempting to decrease your forklift’s fuel consumption, there is not one specific change that will greatly alter usage; however, you can focus on smaller tasks to create a cost savings. Discovering which changes will make an impact will require a combination of facility observation, operator training and review of maintenance history.

Facility observation.
The layout of your facility and forklift traffic routes affect the daily travel distance and therefore, fuel consumption. Conduct a walk-through to note forklift destination spots such as delivery points, parking and storage areas. Solicit operator feedback regarding route challenges and suggestions for more efficient production. If the space allows, you may test route changes that decrease forklift travel.

Operator training.
Driver habits can play a role in the amount of fuel used during his or her shift. Communicating forklift best practices should begin in the classroom portion of the OSHA-required training. Educate operators to avoid “gunning” the engine or leaving the forklift to run when not in use. If fuel consumption is high for a particular lift, you may consider tracking usage by shift and assigned operators to address specific issues.

Maintenance history.
Forklifts on a regular maintenance schedule typically run smoother and are more fuel efficient. The quality of fuel is important as well as replacing normal wear items. For example, forklift tires worn beyond their useful life will consume more fuel.

The type of forklift and its application can also affect fuel consumption. If you are uncertain of your average fuel cost per hour per unit, a drive test can help you determine what to expect. Start by training operators to log start and finish hour meter readings each time the fuel tank is replaced. Keep the log in the operator manual compartment for easy access and request readings record the tenths digit. It is also important fuel tanks involved in the drive test have been filled to capacity before placement on the forklift.

A higher number of hour meter recordings will make findings more accurate. To calculate the total cost of each fuel tank, multiply your price per gallon of fuel by the number of gallons your tank holds. Divide this total by the number of hours your fuel tank operated. This is your average fuel cost per hour per unit. Example below:

LP Gas Hour Tracking

Make:_________________________ Serial Number: ____________________________
Price per Gallon of LP Fuel: $1.50
* Based on 7 gallons of LP gas in a 33.5# lb LP tank

START Hour Meter Reading (500) END Hour Meter Reading (530)
Difference (30) Fuel Cost per Hour per Unit ($0.35)

Drive tests may also be used to compare forklift manufacturers and/or models; however, for genuine results ensure each forklift is operated in the same or similar route and application.

Learn more about ProLift and our material handling solutions, including Toyota Forklifts – the #1 selling forklift in the world.