Top tips to ensure you buy the right used forklift

  • Editorial Team
  • Forklift
  • 2 September 2019

Buying a used forklift is often a convenient and affordable way for companies, regardless of their size, to get top-quality equipment that will fulfil their specific requirements.

However, when it comes to buying a used forklift truck, there are certainly some questions you should ask yourself – and some inspections you should carry out – before committing to a purchase.

So, with that in mind, let’s take a closer look at what you need to consider before you buy your company’s next piece of heavy machinery.

1. Ensure it will work for your company’s needs

To many people, it may seem that all forklifts are alike. And, to some extent, they are. However, the details can differ from vehicle to vehicle, with many of them designed for very specific applications rather than for general forklift-based activity.

You need to think about what your company is hoping to achieve with the vehicle, and whether the one you are looking at can fulfil your needs.

Are you going to use it regularly or sparsely? Are most of the tasks it is set to carry out going to happen indoors, or will it mostly be located outdoors? Are there going to be any associated environmental restrictions that relate predominantly to noise or exhaust emissions? Are you going to need a vehicle that has a very small turning circle, or is one of the key requirements that it can operate for a long period of time on a small amount of fuel?

All of these questions need to be asked – and adequately answered – prior to making an actual purchase. Getting the wrong equipment could not only be a costly error financially, but could also mean that you are unable to carry out the tasks you need to achieve.

2. Conduct a thorough visual inspection

If possible, visit the truck in person and look over the machine yourself to get a more robust idea of what you are going to spend your money on. Alternatively, if you are going to purchase online, you may be able to ask the dealer if they can film an inspection on your behalf, or you could send somebody over to the site to do an inspection for you.

3. Get a feel for how it operates

Of course, you won’t actually be able to get a good grasp of how well the forklift performs unless you have actually taken it for a ride. If you are qualified, take the machine out for a drive yourself and test the functionality. Check all of the operations and mechanisms and make sure they perform how you expect. It is probably worth doing this outdoors to see how it handles rough terrain, and also indoors, as this will enable to you see whether there are any oil leaks.

Want to discuss your forklift needs in more detail? Get in touch with us today.