On average, a brand new forklift can cost anywhere between $15,000 to $25,000 depending on weight capacity. Fortunately, the used forklift market provides cost-effective alternatives.

Forklifts are a great vehicle for transporting heavy items in the workplace. They also require precautionary use to ensure safety.

Purchasing a used forklift is a great way to save money, but you must do your homework. Consider the following tips before adding one to your fleet.

Inspect and Test

In some ways, the process is similar to buying a used automobile, but door dings and funky smells shouldn’t be your main concern.

Start with the fork and mast. Ensure there are no signs of bending as this can happen over time if a forklift has carried too much weight. Make sure there are no cracks present either as this can significantly compromise efficiency.

Test out the cab. Make sure the seatbelts securely fasten and the overhead guard has no openings. Nearly 35,000 people are injured every year by forklifts.

Also listen to how the engine runs as forklift repairs can be costly. Same goes for the battery, if it uses one, because these can be significantly expensive. Any reputable seller should have no issue letting you test out the used forklift.

Consider Its History

Chances are most used forklifts for sale have had maintenance performed at one time or another. This shouldn’t have a significant impact on which used forklift you decide to purchase, but it’s helpful to know.

Request documents of any formal work that’s been done. You should also keep in mind the environment a used forklift has been in. What kind of cargo was it moving? Was it being used every day? What was the average weight load?

Rather than tracking mileage like a car, a forklift’s age is determined by hours. You can verify this on the dashboard. Keep in mind hours are tracked whenever a forklift’s turned on, meaning not every single hour was spent moving a heavy load.

Make Sure It’s Suitable

Most importantly, consider the type of work you plan on utilizing a used forklift for. Not all forklifts are created the same. They’re all designed to take on different weight capacities.

This is another reason to verify a used forklift’s history to make sure it’s applicable to the type of work you plan on using it for. A forklift used inside a couple of days per week could have a much different result for someone using it outside every single day.

Give yourself a cushion when it comes to weight capacity. Always purchase a forklift with a maximum weight capacity slightly greater than what you intend to transport.

Purchasing a Used Forklift

At the end of the day, a forklift’s purpose is to move heavy items while ensuring your safety. It can be tempting to purchase a used forklift at a low price, but compromising the buying process can have negative repercussions.

Before considering potential used forklifts, compare different types to hone in on a specific make or model that will work best for you.

Are you considering buying a used forklift for your business or are interested in understanding more about the process? Contact us to learn more about how we can help.