How To Choose The Best Forklift

With an increase in heavy loads being transported and handled, it’s vital that your business is using a forklift that is suitable for its specific requirements, which is why we are here to help. The team at Trucks Direct UK have compiled their extensive knowledge of the trade to create this guide on how to choose the best forklift for your company. 


Your specific requirements


The most important aspect to consider when choosing a forklift is the general requirements, as there is now a wide selection of forklifts that have been designed for specific purposes. For instance, if you are looking for maximum height lift, then a reach forklift may be most suitable due to its lift mast that is capable of reaching extensive heights. Whereas, if you are looking to transport wide or long loads, a side loader may be more fitting due to the ability to drive in narrow aisle width locations. That being said a few of the most other types of forklifts include:


  • Counterbalance forklifts: Commonly used for indoors warehouses and stores, they offer straightforward operation and have dual forks at the front for to pick up and transport the load. 

  • Flexi forklifts: Based upon the counterbalance and reach forklift, the front axle moves to steer the unit, enabling for a short turning radius and ability to carry loads directly from the rack in narrow aisles. 


Load and height capacity


You also need to consider the load capacity for your forklift, as failing to use the correct forklift can slow down productivity and often cause issues. For example, if you use a truck that doesn’t have the capabilities to lift a particular weight, then you could potentially damage or break the forklift if you attempt to lift heavier products. 


Height is also an important consideration, as you will need to establish what reach is required. This is because many forklifts have height restrictions or are simply not designed to lifting loads at great heights, so it’s vital to establish this before you purchase your forklift.




Different usages also require different attachments, with several forklifts being designed with only one specific attachment fixed into place. That being said, there are several forklift trucks that have the functionality to change the attachments, with a few of the most common alterations being:


  • Drum grab: A clamp used to pick up and transport plastic and steel drums with ease.

  • Cage: Can be used in order to safely lift and move personnel to higher platforms.

  • Fork extensions: Extend your current fork with an extension so that you can pick up larger pallets without the risk of the pallet falling.


Electric, Gas or Diesel?


Each forklift operates on a different fuel type, though each fuel has its own advantages and benefits: 


  • Electric forklifts: These vehicles are much more suitable for working indoors, primarily because zero-emissions are given off, as well as being much more economical in terms of fuel usage. However, they require a considerable amount of charging, meaning that costs could increase for batteries and maintenance.

  • Diesel forklifts: Diesel-powered trucks tend to be much more powerful and faster than the alternatives, which is why they are favoured for external operations. That being said, they have a larger expense for fuel, which should be considered before purchasing a forklift.

  • Gas: A balance between electric and fuel in terms of power and energy, gas-powered forklifts are becoming one of the most favoured options in recent years. They are also ideal in both indoor and outdoor work environments, meaning they should always be a top consideration when purchasing a forklift. 




One of the final things to consider when choosing the best forklift is your budget - in particular how you are looking to pay. Due to the large up-front cost to purchase a vehicle outright, many users look into alternative options including finance agreements, leasing or rentals. A few things worth considering include the ongoing costs of the forklift over its lifetime, including its tires, servicing, depreciation and operator costs. 


About Trucks Direct UK

If you looking to purchase a used forklift, then you will be pleased to hear that we are one of the UK’s largest independent suppliers of retail forklifts. All of our vehicles are priced incredibly reasonably, as well as being supplied with a 12-month LOLER certificate and an extended warranty. 

For those that are interested in our forklifts but need financial support, we offer assistance with finance options. To find out more about how we can help you, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with our team by giving us a call today on 0121 667 2780 to speak to one of our expert consultants. 


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