Have you ever wondered how forklift trucks work? They use the science of hydraulics, a fascinating aspect of physics that combines with amazing industrial design. If you work in the construction industry or just love big machines, knowing how they work is crucial. 

Physics and machine design can be complicated, so we are here to help. Below, we present our must-know guide on the hydraulic forklift. 

How Hydraulics Work

Hydraulic systems work using Pascal’s law. This is a law of physics that states that when pressure is put on an enclosed liquid, that pressure is transmitted to the interior of the container. In essence, you can apply a little pressure to a liquid in a vessel and change it to a very powerful force. 

In a hydraulic system, the liquid is confined and has pressure applied from one side. The pressure applied transfers to a piston on the other side of the container. This energy pushes the piston upwards. 

For the piston to return, the pressure has to be released. In a hydraulic lifting system, pulling a lever will add pressure to the pistons, and they will not go back to a normal position until the pressure is released by the operator. 

Parts of a Hydraulic Forklift

The hydraulic fluid is held in the tank. This is usually integrated into the vehicle itself, and it dispenses fluid as and when needed. This flows out through the pump, which houses a pair of gears that push fluid in the opposite direction of their rotation. 

There are a number of valves to cut off and redirect fluid. The control valve is the most important, as without it there would be no direction to the fluid and the pressure would not work. The relief valve is a safety measure that relieves the system should the pressure becomes too much. 

The final crucial part is the return line. This returns used fluid back to the tank. 

How Much Weight Can a Forklift Take?

The amount of weight a forklift can take depends on the design of the forklift. One of the most popular types of forklifts is a pallet jack, which is commonly seen in warehouses, picking orders, and lifting goods. They can lift around 3300 pounds. 

Three and four-wheel lifts are the next sizes of forklifts, with four wheels being the bigger versions. They are used for a number of warehouse tasks. Three-wheel forklifts can lift around 4800 pounds while four wheels can make a huge jump to 8000!

The most powerful forklifts are the ones designed for heavy-duty work, often known as rough terrain forklifts. They are the ones you see on building and construction sites. As they lift building materials, they have immense power being able to lift around 35,0000 pounds on one machine. 

Servicing a Forklift

A hydraulic forklift is complicated, sophisticated machinery. You should never attempt to service them yourself and instead contact a reputable company. If not, you risk a huge loss and could be seriously injured. 

Your first stop for forklift and hydraulic servicing should be Superior Industrial Products. We have a reputation for excellence in the Nashville area with the testimonials to back it up. Contact us today for a no-obligation quote and get your machinery ready for the coming year.