Do I Need A Forklift MOT Service?
People who are involved in the warehouse and transportation industry usually ask the question “Do I need a forklift MOT service on my forklift?” Well, here at Trucks Direct, we are here to answer that question for you. First of all, some forklift operators may not know where to take their forklift in order for it to pass safety checks as well as the general procedure for a forklift MOT service. As such this article will discuss:
- Do forklifts need an MOT service?
- What does a forklift MOT service consist of?
- 3 simple tips to reduce your forklift mot servicing costs
Do Forklifts Need an MOT Service?
The all important answer to whether your vehicle needs a forklift MOT service is of course, yes although it’s not a typical MOT that you would normally see at a car garage. This is because each forklift is required to pass a Thorough Examination (TE) to ensure that it’s safe for warehouse and road use.
A TE is required by law, meaning it cannot be avoided, and it does not matter if your forklift (owned or rented) is going to be used on public roads, it still has to pass the examination. It is also worth noting that the TE can only be conducted by licensed companies and appropriately qualified individuals who are accredited to CFTS (Consolidated Fork Truck Services) which is supported by HSE.
Anyone else conducting the TE will mean the result of your forklift service is voided and will mean that your forklift is technically ‘unsafe’ to use. Further consequences of a TE conducted by an unlicensed/unqualified business or individual can result in:
- Inaccurate advice
- Inconsistent standards
- Legal problems
- Potential for forklifts accidents to occur later on down the line which can lead to: damage of equipment, goods and premises, delays in productivity, heavy fines and dangers to human health.
Generally speaking, the forklift MOT service is a far more rigorous process than a standard car MOT but its ultimate aim is to protect users and people in the surrounding vicinity from the dangers when operating a forklift.
What Does A Forklift MOT Service Look Like?
The TE includes a full audit and thorough inspection and testing of the main parts of the forklift which affect safety. This is required under the health and safety law ‘LOLER 1998’ which covers lifting equipment and ‘PUWER 1998’ which deals with all other safety-related items, such as brakes, steering and tyres. Every forklift must have a TE at least once a year and can rise up to 4 and over depending on the forklift’s usage and type of forklift
A brief overview of the MOT service can be listed below:
- Driver safety mechanisms
- Masts and forks
- Engine functions
- Battery functions (if forklift is electric)
The TE ensures that all examinations are recorded where necessary. In addition, the quality mark of the scheme gives a ‘stamp of approval’ to your business. The benefits of having such as stamp are as follows:
- Gives your business immediate credibility and authority
- Makes a positive statement to your customers and staff that you care about safety and their welfare
- Marks your trucks with a symbol of excellence that is nationally recognised
- Reduces the risk of accidents
- Fulfilling your legal requirements to use the forklifts
3 Simple Tips to Reduce Your Forklift MOT Servicing Costs
Below we have listed 3 simple yet effective ways which could save you some cost on your next forklift MOT service:
- Check Your Lights
Our first tip is to check your lights before sending your forklift to be serviced. You’d be surprised at the amount of vehicles that don’t pass their MOT because of lighting and signal problems. This is something incredibly basic and can easily be rectivited. Start by checking that your front and rear lights work as intended. Check your front headlights, your hazard lights and indicators. Don’t forget to check that your dashboard in your forklift shows all the correct warning signals when the engine is turned on.
- Drive Smoothly to Reduce Wear on Brakes
This is more of a long term means of advice but next time you are operating a forklift, make sure to drive as smooth as possible without any sudden harsh braking. Braking suddenly will cause significant wear on your brake pads and if this happens often, you’re more than likely going to need a new set of brake pads earlier than you initially anticipated. Braking issues are also the third most common cause of MOT failure. You’ll need to regularly check your vehicle’s brakes and make sure they are well maintained to remain safe on the road and around the warehouse.
- Check Your Tyres
Tyres can become expensive, especially if you’re not expecting that cost on forklift MOT service day. In order to pass an MOT, your car will need to have the recommended amount of tread on each of the tyres – anything less can result in an immediate failure, even if the rest of your forklift is in perfect condition. Also look at the vehicle’s manual to see how much tread the tyres should have as this may be different from vehicle to vehicle. For more information regarding forklift tyres, why not view our blog on signs your forklift tyres need changing.